Estimating software projects always include a certain amount of inaccuracy. However, to avoid these big price differences we use strategic estimation methods to get as close as possible. Have you heard about using Magic Estimation for valuing a high amount of requirements to create an accurate project plan in a short spell? Magic Estimation is used to work out epics and is based on relations.
Unlike Poker Planning, which rates user stories, this method lets you estimate a large number of epics to create an applicable scenario for the entire project scope. How does Magic Estimation work?
Epics on cards are related to each other. Why? Ratios are easier to estimate than exact values. It's easy to say that a dog is half the size of a horse. However, it is difficult to say that the dog is exactly 60 cm and the horse is 120 cm tall.
A request is determined as a reference value. All others are estimated either larger or smaller. This creates a first ordered size system by putting the epics in an order. Work with physical boards on the wall or floor to best visualize the layout.
To get a meaningful estimation in agile projects, numerical values are best. Each epic now gets a fictitious currency size, such as Project Points or Space Dollars, to refine the first order of magnitude.
In the next step, an epic is broken down to its user stories.
Then each user story is divided into their tasks and estimated to hours. Again, this is done by the service provider and the customer together to achieve a common agreement.
The estimated number of hours of all user stories is the equivalent of the epic.
This estimation is agile and will be regularly reviewed during the project and compared with other epics.
The more experience you gain from estimating requirements, the more accurate you will be when it comes to planning projects, effort, budget, or individual sprints in the future.
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