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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.

Why Are Daily Scrum Meetings Important for Successful Project Management?

MPUG

The Scrum meeting is an essential part of every project’s management, especially one following Agile methodology. To take full advantage of the benefits of daily Scrum meetings, companies need to believe in empiricism and create an integral framework for implementation. Listed below are many benefits of implementing daily Scrum meetings for successful teams, organizations, individuals, products, and services. So, plan for that daily Scrum meeting!

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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.

Scrum Master Responsibilities: What Does a Scrum Master Do?

Project Bliss

Are you thinking of taking on a Scrum Master role? Do you know what the Scrum Master responsibilities are? To make sure you’re ready to carry out Scrum Master responsibilities, ensure that you have a good understanding of what’s involved. You may at first think it’s just leading the team in answering the three questions in your daily scrum meeting. But as you read on, you’ll see there’s more involved in Scrum Master responsibilities.

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Scrum Master Servant Leader: 12 Ways To Move Your Team to Greatness

Project Bliss

A scrum master servant leader can lead his team to greatness with this advice from Geoff Watts’s wonderful book Scrum Mastery. Please see the Editor’s note below regarding the variation in spelling of the term Scrum Master. Scrum’s framework is easy to understand but hard to master. Especially in the role of Scrum Master as a Servant Leader. What is SCRUM and a Scrum Master? Scrum. Scrum Masters: Team Servant Leaders.

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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.

The Difference Between The Kanban Method and Scrum

Digite

Continuing our theme of helping Agile teams understand the Kanban Method, so they can effectively adopt it for their improvement efforts, I am again honored to publish a guest article by another great friend of ours – Dave White. In this article, he outlines the similarities of the two as WIP Limiting, Pull-based systems – with cadences and a focus on learning – while also explaining their differences. You will enjoy this excellent article. Scrum.

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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.

Agile Project Management With Scrum or Kanban (2018 Guide)

PM Basics

Scrum or Kanban on its own is not an Agile Project Management approach. Scrum and Kanban are separate and self-sufficient frameworks. Main execution phase is done with Scrum. Without Agile Manifesto and marketing buzz around Scrum and Kanban – these are just frameworks.

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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.

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.

Scrum for Newbies: How to Use Scrum to Tame Chaos

Wrike

More specifically, we chose to get our work done using a Scrum framework. How Scrum Helps With the Chaos. We’ve written about Scrum before. Scrum is a process whereby teams break down and accomplish large projects in chunks, allowing for iterations to improve the product progressively. Scrum helped us manage that project and maintain my sanity as well. The Elements of Scrum. How to Make Scrum Work. Parting Advice to Scrum Newbies.

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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.

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 Origins of Scrum and Empirical Closed Loop Control

Herding Cats

Scrum is) more defined rather than empirical process. scrum, not agile. not as it was prior to scrum. Scrum is prescriptive and defined rather than empirical. This took me back since Scrum is derived from an empirical closed loop control system developed in the USAF by Col. No need to explain why OODA is the basis of Scrum, here's a much better post - OODA: The Mindset of Scrum. . Related articles.

How Agile and Scrum Changed the Way We Do Marketing

Function Point

What we found were mostly the typical processes (project lists, goal settings , Adaptive Framework (APF), Waterfall etc.), but we needed something that created both flexibility and accountability – enter Agile mindset with Scrum methodology. Agile project management is an iterative approach to planning and guiding project processes. Previous to Scrum and Agile. Making the Shift to Scrum. Here’s a few: Scrum Effort Estimation and Story Points.

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How Agile and Scrum Changed the Way We Do Marketing

Function Point

What we found were mostly the typical processes (project lists, goal settings , Adaptive Framework (APF), Waterfall etc.), but we needed something that created both flexibility and accountability – enter Agile mindset with Scrum methodology. Agile project management is an iterative approach to planning and guiding project processes. Previous to Scrum and Agile. Making the Shift to Scrum. Here’s a few: Scrum Effort Estimation and Story Points.

2016 40

Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) in Traditional and Agile Life Cycles with MS Project

MPUG

A WBS is important to further estimation—cost, duration, or resources, planning for resources, risk identification, schedule development, among others. The lowest level of the WBS is known as the work package , where you can estimate for cost and duration. Articles wbs.

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Accelerate Agile Project Management Success with Microsoft Teams and Planner

MPUG

Even if a customer requirement appears straightforward, it is very difficult to estimate a forecast on effort and necessary development time. Progress is always checked in an iterative process and workflows are adjusted as needed. SCRUM. Articles agile planner teams

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Forecasting versus Estimating - are they Different or are they the Same

Herding Cats

One of the escape clauses of #Noestimates is to re-label Forecasting as NOT Estimating , It is forecasting, based on empirical data. This is in comparison for estimating purpose for a theoretical model that produces data, parametric from empirical or theoretical models that produce data. In all cases the data is used to estimate some outcome in the past, present, or future. When that estimate is about the future, it can also be referred to as a Forecast.

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Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) in Traditional and Agile Life Cycles with MS Project

MPUG

A WBS is important to further estimation—cost, duration, or resources, planning for resources, risk identification, schedule development, among others. The lowest level of the WBS is known as the work package , where you can estimate for cost and duration. Articles wbs.

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Stories about Stories in Agile Development

MPUG

The process is a complex one with many stakeholders involved over months, sometimes years. In this process, written requirements with written words are many times inadequate, sometimes even inaccurate, and most of the time said requirements don’t convey the real intent. Once have your stories, you break them down to tasks, which can be estimated in hours. This happens in the Iteration Planning meeting (or Sprint Planning meeting, if you are using Scrum).

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Scrum Team has stabilized- what next?

Stepping Into Project Management

Most transformations start with the basic idea of either getting teams to start working in Agile or streamlining their existence process. For more info read Jeff Sutherlands article here. Bottom-line, under estimating doesn’t help as much as over estimating doesn't.

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Webinar Recap: PMI PMBOK Guide 7th Edition Standard – What’s New?

MPUG

So for the first time the PMBOK guide is shifting from a process based standard to a principle based standard. Such as, framework, methods, approaches, processes, knowledge areas, process groups, inputs, tools, techniques, outputs. But, when you take processes.

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Project Management, Jungle-Style

MPUG

With regard to the Tiger Tops workforce, what is the estimated time-on-the-job for all employees (in years)? Please describe the process in your own words…. Articles project management project manager

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How to Manage Project Scope Without Scope Creep (with examples)

Girl's Guide to PM

One of the reasons for that is scope creep – and that’s what this article is all about. Change control or change management is the process of managing unplanned but desired influences on the project. Managing scope starts and ends with a robust change management process.

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DDSTOP The Saga Continues

Herding Cats

We were on of the first users of eXtreme Programming, long before Scrum was around and presented that early work in 2003, " Making Agile Development Work in a Government Contracting Environment, Measuring velocity with Earned Value." . By simply NOT Estimating? All by NOT Estimating?

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DDSTOP The Saga Continues

Herding Cats

We were one of the first users of eXtreme Programming, long before Scrum was around and presented that early work in 2003, " Making Agile Development Work in a Government Contracting Environment, Measuring velocity with Earned Value." . The result was a safety stand down for everyone on the site (5,000 Steel Works), including all us office workers, to get the message about health, safety, and safeguards of the materials and processes on site. . link] Cost Estimating Tools.

DDSTOP The Saga Continues

Herding Cats

We were one of the first users of eXtreme Programming, long before Scrum was around and presented that early work in 2003, " Making Agile Development Work in a Government Contracting Environment, Measuring velocity with Earned Value." . The result was a safety stand down for everyone on the site (5,000 Steel Works), including all us office workers, to get the message about health, safety, and safeguards of the materials and processes on site. . Analytical Hierarchical Process .

The #NoEstimates Paradigm and Response

Herding Cats

This is a good starting point for answering the mail on the notion that decisions can be made in the presence of uncertainty without estimating the impact of those decisions. I attended our Agile Meetup last night, where the speaker walked through the three current Agile at Scale development methods, all based on Scrum - SAFe, LeSS, and Nexus. But his conjecture starts with estimates are a waste , not saying for whom they are a waste for. Process improvement?

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Should Your Team Claim Tasks in Sprint Planning?

Brad Egeland

Sprint planning is typically an industrious, productive process. Teams refine the backlog, set a target velocity, select user stories for the upcoming sprint, estimate effort and define tasks. Use code BRAD10OFF for 10% off your purchase of the Agile estimating tool Planning Poker Despite all this planning, developers often leave planning without tasks assigned to them – and that can be a good thing. Read the full article

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Fallacy of the Week

Herding Cats

Five Different Decision-Making Strategies That Don't Need Estimates. How can you know what is strategic without estimating the strategic value to those paying? In the presence of uncertainty, these means making estimates of both the intangible assets and the tangible outcomes. No Estimate needed. Then you'll need to estimate the Value, the Cost to produce that Value, the Time when that Value is needed. Related articles.

Webinar Recap: Agile Series Part 1 – Understanding & Incorporating Agile Project Management

MPUG

So if you’re new to this or perhaps you’ve kind of been using it in a couple of different veins, maybe you’ve been part of a scrum team or you’ve watched it happen around you, or maybe you’ve seen a horrific implementation of an agile process, it isn’t necessarily the methodology, but sometimes you have to think about your culture, the environment, and what you’re trying to do. So individuals and interactions over processes and tools.

Definition of Done

Herding Cats

The common definition of the Definition of Done in agile software development is (mostly from the Scrum Alliance and other official Scrum sites): A simple list of activities (coding, comments, unit testing, integration, release notes, design documents, etc.) Do those capabilities meet the Measures of Performance that characterize physical or functional attributes relating to the system operation, measured or estimated under specific conditions? Related articles.

2017 38

Misunderstanding Making Decisions in the Presence of Uncertainty

Herding Cats

What happens if you shift focus from "accurate estimation" to "reliably shipping by a date"? . This quote demonstrates a lack of understanding of making decisions in the presence of uncertainty and the processes and events that create uncertainty. There is naturally occurring variability from uncontrolled processes. If your project has no uncertainty, there is no need to estimate. Aleatory uncertainty is expressed as a process variability. Related articles.

A Wrap Up of the #NoEstimating Conjecture Analysis to Date

Herding Cats

The conjecture that we can make decisions in the presence of uncertainty without estimating the impacts of those decisions is without any principles that can be tested beyond personal anecdotes of I know people who spend other peoples money without providing estimates. Here's some reading to help understand why its bunk and how to learn to estimate in the presence of uncertainty in order to make better decisions. Software Estimating Taxonomy. Estimating Accuracy.

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Five Immutable Principles of Project Success

Herding Cats

No matter the engineering processes used to produce the outcomes from the project. Estimating how much is the starting point. Since all risks come from uncertainty, we have to estimate those uncertainties, their impacts, their residual risks after mitigation. Estimating is part of risk management. No Estimating? This is true for planting tomatoes, writing software with Scrum, flying to Mars. Related articles. No matter the size of the project.

Modeling the Future Using Empirical Data from the Past

Herding Cats

This, of course, would mean that climate models, compressible fluid flows, stock markets, automatic landing systems, fracture mechanics, any closed loop process with stationary or non-stationary stochastic behaviors would NOT be possible. Multidimensional integrations of statistical mechanics process in physics. The original author of that opening quote may not be familiar with either these or the general principles of modeling stochastic processes. Related articles.

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The Trouble with Charts

Herding Cats

The findings in this document are extracted by looking for correlations between decisions or behaviors (keeping teams stable, setting your team sizes to between five and nine, keeping your work in process— WiP—low, etc.) The other statistical issue is the chart showing #Noestimates versus other types of estimates. The Performance Index of #Noestimates in the chart above shows differences from Scrum and Lightweight Scrum. Related articles.

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