Software Estimation

  1. List everything you need to do to finish the big chunk of work. this includes any infrastructure work such as setting up branches in the source control system.
  2. Estimate each item on that list. This initial estimate will help you see how long it might take to complete the entire task.
  3. If you have a task longer than one day, break that task into smaller pieces…Only ever track tasks at 0% or 100% complete.If anything more fine-grain is needed then the task can be broken down further.
  4. you can have multiple status to show task completion in context of project delivery. e.g. Ready for QA, Production Ready etc.
  5. Determine a way to show visible status to anyone who’s interested. If you’re the person doing the work, what would you have to do to show your status to your manager? If you’re the manager, what do you need to see? You might need to see lists of test cases or a demo or something else that shows you visible progress.
  6. Since you’ve got one-day or smaller tasks, you can track your progress daily. I like to keep a chart or list of the tasks, my initial estimated end time and the actual end time for each task. This is especially important for you managers, so you can see if the person is being interrupted and therefore is multitasking

[via Coding Horror]

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