Estimating Agile Projects.Or Not

Leading Answers

Project managers generally like plans and estimates so we can forecast when things should be done and how much they may cost. " So, when project managers hear about ideas such as "let's stop estimating," it can trigger a knee-jerk reaction.

Project Management Processes & Phases

ProjectManager.com

If so, it might be time to start implementing proven project management processes and phases at your organization in order to bring your company’s workflow under control. At first, the concept of the project management process and its practical adaption can seem a little daunting, but this article will give you everything you need to set up PM processes and phases at your business. Cost: Estimate the costs involved across the project and formulate a budget.

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Project Estimation: Master the Tools and Techniques

Online PM Courses

There are two reasons why Project Estimation is a big deal for project managers. And second, poor estimates are often a primary reason for a project cost or schedule over-run. So, in this article, we’ll take a careful look at project estimation, to help you learn how to master the art and craft of doing it well. What is Project Estimation? Why is Project Estimation so hard? The Estimation Knife Edge. Methods and Tools for Project Estimation.

8 Tips for Estimating Resources in Project Management

MavenLink

There are several methods for using project scope to help estimate deliverables, including a top-down or bottom-up approach. Analyze Published Estimating Data. The information you gain through these systems can be invaluable to your project management process.

Project Management Process & Phases

ProProfs Project Management

In simple terms, the Project Management process is the art of managing all components of a project from starting to closure using a structured scientific methodology. According to the PMBOK guide, which is considered the bible for project managers, project management is scientifically done by managing project documents through 49 processes that are grouped into five project phases. . The processes in this phase are: . How to Implement a PM Process in Your Organization.

Software Estimating Resources

Herding Cats

This blog page is dedicated to the resources used to estimate software-intensive systems using traditional and agile development methods. The reason for this resource page is the lack of understanding of how to estimate, the urban myths about software estimating, and the fallacies that estimating is not needed, when developing software, in the presence of uncertainty, when spending other peoples money. Estimating Probable System Cost,” Stephen A.

RBS is one more technique for your estimation tool belt!

Kiron Bondale

Project managers need to be comfortable with different estimation techniques. Foundational project management courses will teach you about analogous, bottom-up, parametric and three-point estimating. Take a course covering agile delivery and you’ll learn about relative sizing techniques such as estimating poker or t-shirt sizing. Estimate the size or effort of that story or work package.

Estimating Resources

Herding Cats

There's a never-ending opportunity to learn how to estimate in the presence of uncertainty. Here's some resources for informing that learning process. . Don't need estimates? - Related articles. Want To Learn How To Estimate? Herding Cats: Estimating on Non-Trivial Software Projects. NoEstimates Estimating

Why Johnny Can't Estimate?

Herding Cats

Since all risk comes from uncertainty - reducible (Epistemic) and irreducible (Aleatory), estimating is a foundation of all we do. There is no discussion of the conjecture that estimates are a waste, estimates can't be done, estimates are evil, estimates must be stopped immediately. To be informed how to estimate in this broad range of domains, problems, and impacts - education, exp[erience, and skill are needed. Gow to avoid common estimating mistakes.

Closed Loop Control and Granularity of the Estimating Process

Herding Cats

DP6Jw is an overview of this process. To control this process using feedback and corrective actions ‒ in the same way, your closed loop controller for your air conditioner or heater does - a sampling rate is determined based on the rate of change of the underlying processes. These measures, corrective actions, and resulting outcomes operate in the presence of statistical and probabilistic processes. Stochastic process control is the field of study.

Estimating is a Learned Skill

Herding Cats

Estimating is a learned skill, used for any purpose from every-day life to management of projects. When I left for the airport this morning to catch my flight to a customer site I estimated, given the conditions, how much time I need to get to my favorite parking spot at DIA. The same process for estimating is applied to multi-billion dollar projects we work. And the same process is applied to the Scrum development processes on those projects. .

Why Johnny Can't Estimate? (Update)

Herding Cats

There is a discussion of the conjecture that estimates are a waste, estimates can't be done, estimates are evil, estimates must be stopped immediately. To be informed how to estimate in this broad range of domains, problems, and impacts — education, experience, and skill are needed. Through this education process and the hands-on experiences that followed, we all learned an Immutable Principle. Generating accurate and precise estimates is straightforward.

Principles of Cost and Schedule Estimating

Herding Cats

One of the 4 summary root causes of project performance failures is Unrealistic Cost and Schedule Estimates based on inadequate risk-adjusted growth models. Those making these claims may have their own personal purposes, their own agenda, their own reasons for sell this idea that estimates are somehow no longer needed when we're spending other people's money to produce value in exchange for that money. If you have no uncertainty, then estimates provide no value.

Decisions Without Estimates?

Herding Cats

Can you make a decision without an estimate? There are NO means of making a credible decision in the presence of uncertainty without estimating the outcome of that decision. These two points of view are the basis of any credible business management process. If you want to decide what's the probability of occurrence of some Epistemic uncertainty or the statistical processes for some aleatory activity you need to estimate. Don't assume, Estimate.

How to Talk About Estimates

Herding Cats

What is an estimate? An estimate as a noun is an approximate calculation or judgment of the value, number, quantity, or extent of something. An estimate as a verb is to roughly calculate or judge the value, number, quantity, or extent of. But those estimates, nouns, and verbs themselves's have other attributes. Estimating and the resulting Estimates must be described by their accuracy and precision. Related articles. Estimates.

Basis of Estimating Software Development

Herding Cats

The estimating of software development is both straightforward and complex. When it is suggested that estimating is hard, of no value, and unnecessary, always ask what principle is used to support that claim? Here are some resources that will provide guidance to produce credible software development estimates, in both traditional and agile domains. Software Sizing and Estimating: Mk II FPA , Charles Symons, John Wiley & Sons, 1991. Related articles.

Estimating the Risk

Herding Cats

Aleatory uncertainty, which is the naturally occurring yields variances in the underlying processes. Epistemic uncertainty comes from probabilistic processes that can be addressed with handling responses. In order to make risk-informed decisions, we must estimate the outcomes and the impacts of those outcomes on future activities (cost, schedule, and technical performance of products and services). Without these estimates, there is no risk management.

Top 7 Leadership Articles: Winter Edition

Epicflow Blog

If the sales rate decreases, think over all the parties participating in this process. To understand the figures, there’s nothing better than talking to the heroes involved in the process of data production. This process should also involve taking into account all related facts and data related to the disparities and their further investigation. Written by Art Petty, this article proposes 8 tips for managers to become better decision-makers.

Why Johnny Still Cannot Estimate

Herding Cats

He doesn't know how - He doesn't understand how estimates fit into the process of business and managerial finance of product or service development. He doesn't understand why estimates are needed - He doesn't understand the impact on the business for not knowing how long, how much, and what will be produced for the time and money. Coding work is much more fun than making estimates, documenting the requirements, writing tests. Related articles.

Reasons to Estimate and Measure

Herding Cats

Estimating Software-Intensive Systems: Project, Products, and Processes , Richard D. Stutzke is a starting point for estimating software projects. I recommend it for anyone starting out in the estimating business all the way to seasoned veterans. Any estimating process requires discipline and repeatability to produce accurate and precise results. The estimate can also be produced parametrically, empirically, or through a modeling and simulation.

When to Estimate and When Estimates aren't Needed

Herding Cats

Paul Boos has a post about estimating and makes a case for the Principles of when NOT to estimate. This struck a cord around a bigger topic - the inversion of estimating. When should we NOT estimate? What business decision making conditions could be in place where we don't have to estimate the outcomes of our decision in the presence of uncertainty? Then on to the original conjecture for No Estimates from Paul's post. Not principles for NOT estimating.

How to Estimate Any Software Problem

Herding Cats

ways to make decisions with No Estimates. can we make a decision in the presence of Uncertainty without making an estimate of the impact or outcome of that decision? Let's put aside for the moment the missing principles of managerial finance, probabilistic decision making, microeconomics of decision making, Real Options, Bayesian decision networks, and other decision making processes used in modern business when spending other people's money. An estimate is.

Estimating Accuracy Mathematics

Herding Cats

In the estimating business, like many things in project management, there is confusion about principles, practices, and processes. A good estimation approach should provide estimates that are within 25% of the actual results, 75% of the time. The term within 25% is the Mean Relative Error, that is the estimate is within 25% of the actual value - the real value compared to the estimated value. Related articles. Want To Learn How To Estimate?

How To Create A Simple Project Plan (Project Planning Process)

PM Basics

Nevertheless, project planning is a structured and logical process. In this article, I’ll show you a proven workflow. At each moment of the process, you’re in need of information that you don’t have yet. Most of the processes are interrelated, and you don’t know where to start from. You use outputs from the previous steps in the next step in the process. You need to evaluate each process. Here, I focus on project planning process only.

Agile Estimating Methods and Impact on Project Development Performance Index

Herding Cats

The presentation " Quantifying the Impact of Agile Practices ," Larry MacCherone at the RallyOn 2013 Conference, presents some results on estimating impacts. The chart below shows 4 estimating types, including No Estimates, the sample sizes for each type and the components that make up the estimating types. The Higher the number the better the performance of the process. Teams doing Full Scrum have 250% better Quality than teams doing No Estimating.

Why Estimates are Needed for Success in the Nondeterministic Universe

Herding Cats

There's a fallacy used by some in the software development business, that estimates are not needed to make decisions in the presence of uncertainty. And of course to manage in the presence of uncertainty and the resulting risks we need specific processes and practices based on principles. . Here's an example of the probability distribution of a cost estimate for a project. Related articles. Why Guessing is not Estimating and Estimating is not Guessing.

4 Fallacious Reasons to Estimate and Why Those Are Fallacious

Herding Cats

There's a recent post titled Four Fallacious Reasons to Estimate. It lists the usual suspects for why those spending the money think they don't have to estimate how much they plan to spend when they'll be done producing the value they've been assigned to produce for that expenditure. And like many posts and tweets about estimating, it's made from this point of view, not the business point view, not from the point of view of those paying the developer. Related articles.

The Magic 7 Project Portfolio Management Process Steps

Project-Management.pm

Countless business articles have provided you viable information regarding project portfolio management , accompanied by its objective, the roles of the portfolio manager, and the benefits of the project portfolio management as a whole. And the answer to all of these is in the guise of project portfolio management process steps. Project Portfolio Management Process Steps : #1 – Commitment from the Executives. Project Portfolio Management Process Steps : #5 – Balance is Key.

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Estimating on Non-Trivial Software Projects

Herding Cats

A nice conversation on twitter about estimates on software brought up the topic of estimates as commitments. The #NoEstimates advocates see estimates as making commitments. Yes, commitments are made when we estimate. I have an 80% confidence (an estimate) I can deliver what you need on or before September 15 (an estimate), at or below $15,000.oo (an estimate) with a 15% error band (an estimate). . Estimates are not needed.

Ten Ways to Solve Dysfunctional Communication Processes

Ganttic

Communication is the life force of each and every project and business so it needs to be fully effective to enrich the process. A dysfunctional communication process will undermine what you are trying to achieve. This is a guest post by Michelle Gillam.

The Five Laws of Software Estimating are Wrong

Herding Cats

There's a blog post from a few years back that has resurfaced The 5 Laws of Software Estimates. Law of Software Estimating. Fact of Software Estimating. Estimates are waste. To those paying the developers, estimates provide actionable information needed to make decisions: Can we afford to develop this feature? Estimates are non-transferrable . Its claimed Software estimates are not fungible. This is basic business process improvement.

Five Immutable Principles of Project Success and Estimating

Herding Cats

In order to manage risk - and act as an adult when spending other people's money - you must estimate many aspects of the project. The Five Immutable Principles of Project Success layout the aspects of project success that must be managed using estimates. . There was a question asked on Twitter - what do estimates have to do with these Principles ? Controlling that path - in the presence of uncertainty - means making estimates of the possible outcomes of any decision. .

Estimating is an Everyday Life and Everyday Projects

Herding Cats

A recent twitter post started out with I predict my train will depart from platform 12 in 10 minutes: degree of predictability correlates with length of time I then asked and what is the evidence on which you base this estimated time of departure? I got back I didn't estimate departure, there is a timetable there, but Trains someone's run late & platform sometimes changes. But in fact - mathematical fact - there was an estimate made. Related articles.

12 Principles of Agile with and without Estimates

Herding Cats

When we hear that the next big thing in agile is Not Estimating, let's look to see how those 12 Principles can be applied without those estimates? . How estimates help implement these principles. Without estimates what is missing. Without estimating the delivered value to the business for the estimated cost and time to delivery that value, the balance sheet will be wholly uninformed about when the breakeven date for this expenditure. Yes, good process.

Empower Your Human Resources Processes

MindGenius

Entrepreneurs can’t afford to lose time, money and results from a bad hiring choice (a recent Forbes article by Falon Fatemi quotes Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh who once estimated that bad hires had cost the company “well over $100 million”). What I have learnt from all hires is that consistent review and updating of the recruitment and onboarding process is key to getting it more right than wrong. A Guide to Saving Time in Marketing Planning.

Common Ground for a Conversation about Estimating

Herding Cats

Neil Killick posted a good question, what's the common ground for talking about estimates. All estimates have two attributes - accuracy and precision. The values of these two attributes are what those needing the estimates are after. With the knowledge of the two values of these two attributes the decision makers can assess the "value" of the estimate. That request comes from those asking for the estimate. But that dysfunction is not "caused" by the estimate.

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Behavioural Economics, Estimating, and Decision Making in Presence of Uncertainty

Herding Cats

The behavioral aspects of these decisions involve individuals, organizations, processes, procedures, and governance principles. . You're NOT going to increase the probability of success in the presence of uncertainty without making estimates of the aleatory and epistemic uncertainties the create project risk. Anyone telling you that you can make an informed and credible decision while spending other people's money without making estimates is selling you a pig in a pok e.†. †

Wilo's Law and Mature Communications Processes

Herding Cats

To make some conjecture that some process will fix the problem - Estimates are the smell of dysfunction and NOT Estimating will fix that dysfunction - is naive at best and willfully ignorant of Root Cause Analysis at worse. Avoid Verbal Orders is a critical process in any critical situation. Related articles. Why Guessing is not Estimating and Estimating is not Guessing. A popular quote in the agile community is Wilo's Law.

Principles, Processes, and Practices of Project Success

Herding Cats

Practices and Process are Fads. A Process is a series of steps and decisions involved in the way work is completed. Here's my version in the form of questions that when answered form the foundation for the Practices and Processes. With these 5 Principles, there are 5 Processes needed to implement them. Each of these processes has Practices that have been shown to be widely applicable in many domains, including Agile development. Related articles.

Coherent Design and Development Process

Herding Cats

Related articles. Why Guessing is not Estimating and Estimating is not Guessing. We're working on a white paper "Increasing the Probability of Program Success with Continuous Risk Management," for the Joint Space Cost Council, Scheduler's Forum. During our research, I found a paper "Management Disciplines: Harbingers of Successful Programs," David Acker, Defense Systems Management Review , Summer, 1979.