About MoSCoW, Kano, and RICE.

As a product manager, chances are you’re already familiar with a fun challenge that we all face: deciding what to get your team to focus on – and in what order.

It’s a really important skill to master. How you prioritise can make or break the success of your product. And this is at the very core of what we do. No pressure.

There are a number of prioritisation approaches you can use to help with this. These strategies will help you to maximise value, optimise user experience, and achieve product market fit.


The MoSCoW method refers to Must haves, Should haves, Could haves, and Won’t haves.

It’s a simple but powerful framework, that helps you categorise activities based on their importance.

Must haves are non-negotiable. Should haves are important but not critical. Could haves are desirable but not essential. Won’t haves are the things to steer clear of.

Simply go through a group of ideas, outcomes, or tickets, and put them under one of the four columns. Then start by focusing on the Must haves.


The Kano model groups features into three types: Basic needs, Performance needs, and Excitement needs. It helps you to understand how changes impact customer satisfaction.

Basic needs are expected. Performance needs are linear in impact. Excitement needs can surprise and delight your users.

Prioritisation is based on where features land on these scales.

Another way to look at these needs is as follows.

Basic needs allow a product to enter the market.

Performance needs allow products to stay in the market.

Excitement needs allow products to stand out.


RICE stands for Reach, Impact, Confidence, and Effort.

This system will help you to evaluate ideas objectively.

Reach measures how many users a feature will affect.

Impact quantifies the feature’s impact on users.

Confidence gauges your confidence in these numbers.

Effort estimates the resources required.

By scoring each feature, you can prioritise based on potential impact and feasibility.

When to prioritise?

Prioritisation is a one-off activity – it’s an ongoing task.

Markets evolve, customer needs change, and your product develops and matures.

Be sure to regularly work on your prioritisation strategies to stay agile and competitive.

In summary

In product management, feature prioritisation is a fundamental skill. By using prioritisation strategies, you can make informed decisions, ensure your product meets user needs and expectations, and stay ahead of the curve.

Photo by Sean Stratton on Unsplash