Agile Project Management – Part 1 of 2

  • estimation should be redone during the planning time for the next sprint., There are various methods for doing this
  • Estimation of total cost - As the team continues to deliver tested chunks of business value back to the organization during each sprint, an average velocity is created. From this it is possible to estimate how many sprints it will take to complete the backlog (or to meet a certain release point). There are various methods for doing this, and, like other estimation processes, it should be redone as part of sprint planning. In general, estimates are very bad for the first few sprints and get progressively better as the project continues
  • Story Points - An arbitrary measure of relative complexity of delivery for stories. They have no units and are not fungible from project to project
  • Requirements/Analysis/Design/etc - These traditional terms and skills from technology development do not disappear from agile teams, rather they exist alongside agile concepts. However projects are not planned or managed from these traditional concepts. For instance, Earned Value Management systems (EVM) need to be significantly re-thought in terms of agile concepts. Likewise Portfolio Management Systems


Accounting and agile project management are not naturally enemies! Even though it can seem so. PMI and accounting principles still apply, although you need to be less rigid in how you understand and use them.

Unfortunately, we're not at a point where we can just roll out tools and lay down the Ten Commandments as to how things are going to work. In a world of SarBox and CAP, agile is the new kid on the block. That doesn't mean it won't all work together -- but it means that it's going to take some work to make it happen.


About the Author

Daniel Markham is a hands-on technologist, agile coach, and writer. Some of his clients include State Farm, Pitney Bowes, Charles Schwab, Ford Motor Company, and the Department of Defense. His agile consulting business, Bedford Technology Group, works with clients worldwide to create hyper-performing teams. He is a pilot and scuba diver, and lives with his wife and 2 children in Bedford, Virginia. You can reach him at [email protected] or follow his blog at



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