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Whether you are a project manager planning for a smooth implementation of a plan or a project sponsor on whose decisions a project depends, you cannot escape from the fact that project estimation is essential to its success. In the first place, there are three basic requirements that a project must satisfy: schedule, budget, and quality. The need to work within these essential project boundaries poses a huge challenge to everyone in the central management team. There are various aspects that affect project estimates, such as team skills and experience levels, available technology, use of full-time or part-time resources, project quality management, risks, iteration, development environment, requirements, and most of all, the level of commitment of all project members. Moreover, project estimations do not need to be too complicated. There are tools, methodologies, ... (more)

Metrics that Matter in Agile Projects

Agile methods need only the most important metrics: the ones that tell the whole story about the project. Metrics measure the health of a project and are by far the most objective ways by which a project manager enables all project sponsors and delivery teams to see where resources are needed or spent, or which areas of a project need more focus. Among agile project teams, consolidation of metrics differs significantly, in a way that only the most meaningful metrics should be maintained. In another word, there are certain metrics that agile project teams keep to summarize their ... (more)

Five Ways to Incorporate CMMI with Agile Methods

There is a common misconception that CMMI and Agile are polar opposites. One relies on institutionalization and documentation of processes and methodologies, while the other emphasizes interaction among workers and “working software over comprehensive documentation” (Agile Manifesto). Process documentation and institutionalization is the lifeblood of CMMI, and it is often used in critical software development life cycles. On the other hand, the Agile approach is called into action when a project features incremental changes, particularly those that have not been included in ini... (more)

Waterfall, RUP and Agile: Which is Right for You?

Despite signs of life in the economy, the realities of software development persist. Most companies and customers need their software yesterday with the most advanced features at the lowest possible cost. To accomplish these seemingly contradictory goals, developers seek to streamline production with fast, effective processes that can give the customer what he/she wants in the shortest time possible. These realities and past development failures have led to a shift in software development thinking from the more structured, sequential methods of software development of the past, ... (more)

Seven Questions to Ask Before Building an IT Strategy

Even as modern economic activities rely heavily on sound IT strategies, many organizations fail to take advantage of the many opportunities that technology can provide. For instance, some types of can improve processes and profit margins. Clearly, there is a gap between the availability of infrastructure, and what enterprises actually need to overhaul at their place of business to benefit cash flow. Before formulating your company's IT strategy, there are a few questions that you should ask. Is the strategy too generic? IT organizations hardly cater to just one type of need, on... (more)