Things to note when doing an Estimation for an Enterprise level Project at presale stage

  • Three-point estimate
  • Planning poker
  • Affinity grouping
  • Random distribution
  • T-shirt sizes (Estimation units)
  • Buckets
  • Large, small, uncertain
  • Dot voting
  1. We don’t know well detailed scope of the project
  2. We know or can plan what are the technologies involved, but there can be doubts in the complexity on each where a Proof of Concept is required
  3. There can be resources issues on the technology stack, sometimes experts will be available sometimes not in the company
  4. Client may expect kind of a estimate that they can convert that into cost and see at what range this project will cost, in this case we need to estimate for all the features, which should avoid long gap with the actual implementation
  5. Even though we may done a similar setup, there can version upgrades and fixes may introduced to the products, there can be question how to estimate it

Highlights during estimation at presale stage

  • Better to maintain a separate team for presale activities with domain and technical expertise.
  • Make sure the presale team involve in development or implementation activities during each quarter or rotational based. This will provide better / accurate estimation for Most Likely part.
  • Do not confuse with “We have done it before” during the estimation process, this can go wrong in the below scenarios. When doing the platform implementations there can be product version upgrades, Operating system level upgrades and technology wise syntax updates, so these needs be taken into consider and proper estimation needs to be made.
  • When doing environment wise implementations the second environment will take less time than the first, but when doing new projects first environment always consider it as fresh, unless you are doing the exact same deployment.
  • Always make sure to add buffer to resources, because at resource level the estimation can change based on the expertise. There is no guarantee that the same presale team will do the work.
  • As a common approach try to make sure that you are taking the 95% confidence level.
  • If you have doubts always do a quick possible POC before sharing the estimation. This will help to get the confidence that this can be done.

Resource Loading

When resource loading make sure that the platform is ready by the Devops team before loading your development and QA teams to the project. As a practice you can load the QA team at the verification stage of the platform and the development team once you have the initial Detailed Designs are ready. If its sprint based loading then make sure at-least 2–3 sprints designs were finalized and also you have an overall design plan with dependent features.

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Ajanthan Eliyathamby 🇱🇰

Ajanthan Eliyathamby 🇱🇰

Associate Architect — Enterprise Integration | WSO2 Certified Solution Architect | https://ajanthane.blogspot.com/