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Better Estimation and Planning

When will it be done?

From the dawn of time, we're asking: How long will the project take, and when can we see something working. Especially in our Agile era when the market, technology and skills shift so quickly, we need to communicate estimates clearly and plan effectively, in a sea of uncertainty.

Over time, we've collected a few methods of estimation. We're going to discuss and experiment with them in this workshop, and taste what works and what doesn't. In addition, we're going to see what metrics we need to collect as we go, and how to interpret them to meaningful projection. Finally, we'll see if (and when) the NoEstimates method may be the right answer.

Topics covered in the workshop:

  • Why planning and estimation is important (and to whom)
  • Dealing with the uncertain and the unknown
  • Reducing risks in planning and reporting
  • Estimation methods (relative, story points, cumulative flow)
  • Pros and cons of the different methods
  • Estimating the unknown
  • Projection methods and meaning (Monte-Carlo simulations)
  • Getting real with NoEstimates


Key takeaways:

  • Why estimates suck
  • The priniciples behind using techniques like story points, velocity, flow, and principels planning poker that makes them effective (and what breaks them)
  • How to collect the right data to get better projection for the future
  • How to communicate effects effectively