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Why Agile Estimation?


Agile estimation is a technique used in Agile project management and software development to predict the amount of work that can be accomplished in a particular sprint.

Story points are a unit of measure for expressing an estimate of the overall effort required to fully implement a product backlog item or any other piece of work. They consider not just the work to be done, but also the complexity and any risk or uncertainty in the task.

Agile estimation provides a prediction of how much work a team can handle in a given sprint, thus helping in planning and prioritizing the work effectively. It also aids in forecasting when the work could be completed.

Common Agile estimation techniques include Planning Poker, T-shirt sizing, the Bucket system, and Affinity Estimating.

No, Agile estimates are not meant to be exact. They provide a relative measure of complexity and effort involved in a task, rather than an exact measurement of time. The aim is to facilitate better planning and task prioritization.

Teams can improve their estimation process by regularly reviewing and reflecting on past estimates, being consistent in how they assign story points, and fostering open communication so that everyone’s views are considered in the estimating process.

While you can use hours, it’s often discouraged. Hours represent a time-bound concept which does not consider complexities and uncertainties in the same way that story points do. Story points are a more abstract measure that reflect the effort and complexity, not just the time it will take.

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