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Discussion on: ⏰ How to nail time estimations

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ksaaskil profile image
Kimmo Sääskilahti

Thanks for the interesting article! I very much like the advice of taking past experiences into account when estimating.

I've found PERT estimation technique to be quite useful in estimating, I think I picked the recommendation from the Clean Coder. Do not give a single number as estimate but three numbers: one for optimistic estimate, one for the most likely, and one for the pessimistic. If the effort is wildly difficult to estimate, it shows up in the numbers.

Also remember that estimation is not the same as committing to a date. If you commit to a date, then other people will make their plans depending on your commitment, and you must get the job done. I think that's just professional behavior for a software dev. If you are unsure, don't commit. It's much better to say "it's probably ready next week but could take up to four weeks" than make your boss happy by saying "it'll be done next week" and then go to them in a week and say it'll take three more weeks.

Finally, we'll all miss deadlines. The important thing is that when you see a deadline approaching and you know you'll miss it, you should immediately notify every stakeholder you'll miss the deadline so they can take that into account.

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carmenhchung profile image
Carmen Chung Author

Love this response!