"Planning Poker" in Agile Project Management
A Fun and Useful Tool for Estimating
Imagine that you're working out the budget for a large, complex and fast-moving project.
You spend hours talking to the different people involved, researching best- and worst-case scenarios, and calculating costs, even though much of the project is beyond your control and expertise.
It takes you a week to finalize your schedule and finance. But no sooner have you done so than you discover that the project requirements have changed, and much of your work is now irrelevant. What a waste of time, energy and resources! Surely there's a better way?
In this article, we look at how playing "planning poker" can help you to estimate what's required for your project in a fun, fast and effective way. And, as part of the Agile approach to project management, it involves all of your team members in the process.
What Is Agile Project Management?
Agile Project Management is an iterative, flexible approach to project planning. The technique works well in fast-paced environments, in complex situations, and when requirements frequently change, such as in software development.
Agile gives teams the freedom to adapt the way that they work, which means that the final product is often different from the original idea. But, because the customer is involved throughout, and because team members learn from each iteration, they are able to deliver a product that the end user actually wants.