Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

The dreaded monster of time tracking

By | July 20, 2011 | No Comments »

Andrew Zaikin
Anyone who has ever managed a software development organization will agree: time tracking is a pain in the neck. It’s difficult to get people to fill out time sheets, or otherwise submit their hours into some kind of system. Developers see it as a boring and irritating activity that is also invasive: people just don’t like to be tracked, and if you try, they will suspect ulterior motives. In short, most developers hate time tracking with a purple passion.

But what if you really need time tracking? Well, all is not lost. Read more

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Estimation techniques

By | July 6, 2011 | No Comments »

Rouslan Minasian
Over the years, I’ve been involved in a lot of discussions about how to estimate during sprint planning. If you’re new to Scrum – or even if you’re not – I hope you can find value in these musings.

Story Points. There are some very good reasons to estimate in story points rather than in man-hours. When you work in an Agile environment, everybody pretty much agrees that there is uncertainty to every user story. In order to claim that a requirement will “cost” 8 man-hours, you should first call in a business analyst to flesh out the requirement until it’s 100% unambiguous, and also an architect to design a solution for it. Read more

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Labor Arbitrage Isn’t

By | July 5, 2011 | No Comments »

Peter VaihanskyThe use of the expression “labor arbitrage” to describe outsourcing in general, and outsourcing of software development in particular, has always seemed extremely misleading to me. The term “arbitrage” refers to the practice of taking advantage of a price difference between two or more markets: striking a combination of matching deals that capitalize upon the imbalance, the profit being the difference between the market prices. In other words, arbitrage means the possibility of riskless profit at zero cost. Read more

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Using different units of estimation

By | July 1, 2011 | No Comments »

Michail GanchikovA while ago the structure of our project team changed, making it distributed: several very senior developers in another country joined us in order to assist in the implementation of certain features crucial to the project.

This was a reasonable decision because the new developers had deep knowledge of the underlying technology, and that knowledge could now be spread across all team members. Read more

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