Estimating in the agile world!

I’ve read this article by Dan North – the perils of estimation

With this question in mind “how do you plan in agile (or kanban)”

Up to now we’ve been using stories which are great for say 2 week planning but not for 1 month or 3 month planning, or you end up in the situation that Dan describes in his article above I’ve been there, I’m there now as well it’s a waste the estimate are worth the paper their written on!

So I’ve found a few things that might help and I’m going to try them out over the next few months and see:

The first idea/tool is Effect Maps http://gojko.net/papers/effect_maps.pdf – high level business value planning

Second, Deliberate Discovery (discussed in Dan North’s article above and in more detail here)

Third, estimate at the epic level using a good estimation process and alway give three point estimates:

  • best case
  • most likely
  • worst case

don’t be afraid to write down assumptions either if they change then your estimate becomes invalid and only let all three of your estimates be published be aware if someone just takes the best case!

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