Re: Time management issues

Subject: Re: Time management issues
From: Stuart Burnfield <slb -at- westnet -dot- com -dot- au>
To: hsteele1 -at- gmail -dot- com
Date: Wed, 11 Jun 2008 22:36:05 +0800

Hi Holly -

Forget fudge factors--illogical and not useful. ("Based on my
experience, everything takes three times as long as I expect it should
based on my experience." Yup, right.)

JoAnn Hackos has published an online Dependency Calculator:

I've found it to be a very useful planning aid. It avoids the problem
of the 'standard situation', because it's based on your own past
performance, not someone else's. (Of course you still have to track
your projects for a while to get realistic benchmarks.)

Even better, the calculator forces you to think about the special
characteristics or risk factors of this project, and how they might
affect your general metrics either way. These dependencies include:
- Product stability/completeness
- Information availability
- Subject-matter expert availability
- Writers' writing and design experience
- Writers' technical experience

... and some others. Clearly, if the project team is very experienced
in the subject matter, audience, and publishing tools, and the product
is functionally stable and a prototype is available to the project team,
you would expect higher productivity. If you have inexperienced writers,
new documentation tools, invisible subject-matter experts, and a product
that is being redeveloped frantically up till the release date, you must
expect to increase your standard estimates for each of these factors.


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