Inflectra | Estimation

Posts Tagged 'Estimation'

The Perils of Agile Estimation (Part 2)

June 7, 2021

In the previous post, we examined why and how agile software estimation goes wrong so often, and we identified three principles that must support any good estimation method:

  1. Reliability - An estimate must reflect the performed work within a reasonable confidence interval.
  2. Objectivity - The same estimate should be given for a task, regardless of who's giving the estimate.
  3. Consistency - Given nothing else has changed, an estimate should not change with time.

I call this the ROC principles. In this post, we'll start looking at techniques and methods we can apply to our estimation process to implement these principles. In order to properly ROC-ify our estimates, the first thing we need to grok is the difference between complex and complicated tasks.

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The Perils of Agile Estimation (Part 1)

March 23, 2021

Estimation has always been an inflection point in the software engineering world. Many developers admit that one of the hardest parts of their job is not about naming things or invalidating caches (as the old saying goes) but giving estimates. Certainly, for many experienced software engineers, estimates have always been the most frequent area of friction between software developers and managers. Both sides seem to have valid arguments: managers want to know how long things will take, as they need to manage budgets and customer expectations. Developers, on the other hand, know that most software tasks cannot be estimated accurately enough to satisfy the manager's needs. This friction has been so intense that it's given rise to the #NoEstimates movement and many flame wars on social media. But is the choice truly between one of these two extreme positions, or can a happy medium be found that satisfies both sides?

This series of articles attempts to explore and answer this question.

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Simplifying Test Estimation | InflectraCon 2020 IRL

October 29, 2020

We have recently hosted Inflectra's annual user conference - InflectraCon. In 2020, we have dedicated InflectraCon to Agile Software Testing and DevOps theme and held it virtually. InflectraCon 2020 combined multiple tracks, of which, one - called Inflectra in Real Life or IRL in short - showcased the various uses of the Inflectra platforms (SpiraTest, SpiraTeam, SpiraPlan, Rapise, Kronodesk, etc). 

Inflectra is happy to present an InflectraCon 2020 IRL talk by our friend from far away New Zealand - Geoff Horne. In the session, Geoff demonstrates an Excel-based tool for estimating software testing projects. 

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Blog: Art of Agile Estimation

May 22, 2019

Frequently, people wonder whether agile estimation approaches differ completely from the plan-driven approaches in project management. While each framework has its own uniqueness in their approach to gathering estimates, the nature of estimates gathered should be considered in relation to the project or product lifecycle.

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Why Time Spent is Not the Same as Work Done!

March 3, 2016

One of the questions we get frequently asked is - how do the various effort fields in Spira work? Specifically - if I have an estimated effort of 10 hours but the actual effort is 5 hours, how come it doesn't show 50% completed. This blog post explains the fields in Spira and why time spent does not always (or often) equate to how much work has been done!

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User Story Normalization

April 24, 2015

Traditional software development estimating techniques are slow, long lasting exercises and as such are totally unsuited to Agile processes. New methods of estimating have emerged which fit the Agile model, requiring minimal effort to provide ‘just enough’ information to support prioritization and decision making. The popular unit of measurement for Agile sizing is the Story Point. Read More

Estimating Agile Projects

August 26, 2014

Traditional software development estimating techniques are slow, long lasting exercises and as such are totally unsuited to Agile processes. New methods of estimating have emerged which fit the Agile model, requiring minimal effort to provide ‘just enough’ information to support prioritization and decision making. The popular unit of measurement for Agile sizing is the Story Point. Read More