Wednesday 2 February 2022

Percentage estimation of project duration

Many are interested in how many percent of the project time is usually allocated to specific stages of work, for example, stage one - feasibility analysis, stage two - system development, etc. Basically, the reason for the interest lies in the use of this knowledge to evaluate the rest of the project.

For example, if the first stage represents 10% of the total project, then you can simply multiply the amount of time spent on work by ten. This is an unreliable approach to scoring, so avoid calculating data in this way.

The development of a project system varies from larger to smaller, and while statistics should definitely be supported, it is still believed to be a flawed assessment approach. Instead, it is recommended to be based on estimates of the approximate plan of the product being created, including all parts, such as input data, results, files, records, data item, etc. 

Some of these components can be adopted from other systems, others will require modification, and some may be completely new. It's called an assessment based on a system of "specifications," a simple concept derived from engineering and manufacturing. Even if your project includes a single program, you should check the types and number of components that affect the job.

Many companies skip the early stages of work, instead of concentrating on the programming phase, which is considered a very important job. In this scenario, programming represents 85% of the project. Instead, you need to spend more time early on to clarify the requirements, and to produce better specifications for programmers and database administrators. Consequently, 60% is allocated to the early stage, which includes system analysis and design, 15% to programming and 25% to execution and verification. Only 15% is devoted to programming - why such a discrepancy? Because programmers have long suffered from a lack of appropriate technical specifications, with difficulty finishing the work. But if you first concentrate on improving the technical conditions, you can avoid guesswork in the work of the programmer.

Some consider the preliminary work to be something insignificant, and that the real work is included in the programming. Why this happens is unknown, perhaps programming is a more tangible work, since the image and reports can be visually shown to people. But this is not the case, the most important work is carried out in the early stages. Regardless, if you want to create something, whether it's a bridge, a skyscraper, a car, an entire system, or a single program, you'll have to prepare carefully first, or you'll redo the work over and over again. If we also build bridges, as we build systems in the country, then most likely the nation will make do with ferries.

And a few more words about the application of the percentage assessment of the project. The danger is that you may think that you are 90% done, but then you will inevitably realize that the last 10% will last forever. Therefore, it is recommended to avoid this trap and start using the specification method.

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