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Agile Estimating and Planning

4.08  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,284 Ratings  ·  76 Reviews
" Agile Estimating and Planning "is the definitive, practical guide to estimating and planning agile projects. In this book, Agile Alliance cofounder Mike Cohn discusses the philosophy of agile estimating and planning and shows you exactly how to get the job done, with real-world examples and case studies. Concepts are clearly illustrated and readers are guided, step by st ...more
ebook, 368 pages
Published November 1st 2005 by Prentice Hall
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Feb 22, 2010 Kevin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: technology
After having read many books on agile software development, this is the book that finally made the entire system hang together for me. Cohn walks through all of the various aspects of agile planning, providing reasoning about why various approaches are taken as well as how to go about executing them. While the flow of the book can be a bit jarring at times, jumping from one topic to a seemingly unrelated one between chapters, I still came away from the book with a much better understanding of th ...more
Jekaterina Dmitrijeva
May 13, 2015 Jekaterina Dmitrijeva rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pm-stuff
Ļoti koncentrēta informācijas ziņā grāmata. Tiek doti visi nepieciešamie pamati agile plānošanai un darbu novērtējumiem - gan kā vērtēt stāstījuma punktos vai ideālajās dienās, kā noteikt plānoto izstrādes ātrumu (velocity), kā saplānot iterāciju un relīzi. Katra nodaļa it kā būvē māju tālāk uz iepriekšējām nodaļām un dotās informācijas.
Man patika, ka informācija ir skaidri izklāstīta, bez liekvārdības, bet arī ne pārāk sausi. Ļoti palīdz arī kā pēdējā nodaļa iekļautais "reālais" projekts, ar pl
Sebastian Gebski
The bible of agile planning. True classic. Even if personally I don't agree with some statements, this book is a MUST read for anyone who's interesting in REAL-LIFE aspect of agile approach. This book is exactly about the actual bread and butter of agile projects in the COMMERCIAL environment - where risk and predictability have to have some harness.

For me personally it's kind of a shame that I've read it so late and who knows - maybe even I'd skip it completely, but I've decided to read it as a
Jaideep Khanduja

Book Review: Agile Estimating And Planning By Mike Cohn: A Must Read For All Agile Aspirants

This is an excellent book written by Mike Cohn who is the founder of Mountain Goat Software. The title of the book Agile Estimating And Planning says it all for estimating and planning of an Agile Project. It says if the planning and estimating is not done in an agile way, the agile project is not relevant to this estimating and planning. Without taking agile into a
Evan Leybourn
People are, in general, bad at estimating with any definition or accuracy.

That's pretty much the core of this book; and it puts across that message quite well. It then puts forth some good ideas on how to work around this. Using the Fibonacci sequence is a stroke of brilliance and is pretty much the de-facto standard in all agile projects.

The book hasn't, however, held up well over time. It can lack coherence, and once you understand the core message, there's not much additional value in reading
Johnny Graber
May 11, 2014 Johnny Graber rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mike Cohn delivers with “Agile Estimating and Planning” a 360 degree view on estimating an agile project. He explains the topic in a understandable manner and gives you many good insights on what works and why. One of those tips is to separate estimates of size from estimates of duration. This fundamental idea behind story points is explained in a way everyone can follow.

On the other hand I’m not fully convinced that estimating in such a detailed manner is worth the effort. On big projects that
John Telford
One of the best technical books I have read and an excellent treatise on the subject. If you work with Agile or are interested in it, I highly recommend this educational resource.
Jan 21, 2015 Irwan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: finished, it, 2015
Having been involved in several agile projects, with various degree of loyalty to the concept, I found reading this book refreshing. Sometimes it gives me terms for something I have done without knowing exactly what to call. Sometimes I also find concepts or tools that have been more evolved than the one described in this classic (2005?) book. I guess I might be a little bored if I hadnt had those experience. However I would say the narrative in the case study at the end of the book may present ...more
Mar 11, 2010 Danien rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Probably one of the best books I've read on software production management (with the caveat that I have not tried the techniques yet, but will be doing so for a current project).

Estimating and planning in software development with any sort of real confidence is a big challenge. Even more so in game development, where experimentation, the discovery of new features and new problems are all part of the process; meeting a set of specifications doesn't guarantee a good game.

Cohn describes a small set
David Workman
Agile Estimating and Planning has jumped to the top of my list of must-read books for Software Engineers. The book covers a huge amount of extremely useful information covering estimation and planning activities at a truly useful and workable level.

The book starts with chapters on defining the problem areas of estimation and plans, which include items like: estimated times being unrealistically precise (or at least giving the impression of being so), plans that are created and forgotten and then
Erika RS
Like many books on agile, much of this book's ideas and tips are only useful if you are using an agile process with sprints, small tasks, team sprint planning and other features of popular agile methodologies. If your team only uses some elements of agile or is using a lighter weight agile approach such as kanban, it is less useful.

Part 1: The Problem and the Goal

A good overview of the purpose of planning. I took away two points: the process of planning is more important than the plan itself, a
Dec 11, 2009 steve rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'll try to update this later with a summary of what I learned in this book, but my overall impression is that this was a great book for learning the basics of Agile software planning. I especially liked the last chapter, which wrapped up the whole book in a fictional narrative based at a game software development company. Using this example to wrap up all of the concepts in the book was a great move, even if (as a work of fiction) it was horribly written.

I found Agile Estimating and Planning to
Suhail Khaled
Mar 07, 2016 Suhail Khaled is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Finished Chapter 1: The Purpose of Planning. Nothing new there.
Finished Chapter 2: Why Planning Fails. Pretty obvious facts laid down with a bias against the traditional approach. I have prioritized features in traditional development as well as handled uncertainty - it's all part of risk management.

Finished Chapter 3: An Agile Approach - Mainly covers the Agile Manifesto
Chapter 4 looks very exciting - Estimating Size with Story Points
Aug 23, 2015 Maria rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: agile, in-2015
This book provides a lot of detail about different aspects of agile project estimation. Mike Cohn gives lots of pointers on planning to deliver value, picking story points, sizing stories and breaking them down into tasks, measuring and visualizing velocity and progress. The book is easy to read, and has very concrete advice and techniques that could be applied to either set up an agile project from scratch or to tweak an existing process. There are also plenty of examples and a full case study ...more
Jun 17, 2016 Fred rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hands down the best book I have read on this topic. You might wonder how one could write an entire book on just the topics of story estimation and planning, but there is a surprising amount of relevant subject matter that he covers, along with real-life examples. I believe I'll be using this as a reference as long as I'm working with dev teams.
Feb 09, 2014 Aaron rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: agile
I read this book a couple years ago and it has completely transformed how I think about project management. We have applied these concepts in an eCommerce business model and adapted it to meet the needs of a non-technology company. We are about 1.5 into using this methodology an it has been a total success. Thank you Mike Cohn!!
Jack Repenning
Continuing the author's series of must-read books, "Agile Estimating and Planning" clearly, quickly, yet thoroughly takes you through the topic, imparting techniques and judgement on optional variants, along with aposite insights into how these techniques contribute to making Agile processes more effective than rivals.[return][return]And if that's not enough for you, I think the book might be worth the price just for the quotes that head off each chapter:[return][return]Planning is everything. P ...more
Tania Pilbeam
Aug 06, 2014 Tania Pilbeam rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the best book on agile estimating and planning I've read so far. Being the one of the key contributors to creation of Scrum and having years of real-world experience, Mike provides very practical information to successfully implement agile estimating and planning. I highly recommend this book.
Celso Crivelaro
May 19, 2014 Celso Crivelaro rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is a must read for agile professionals in Scrum Master or Product Owner Role.

Covering since the planing to reporting, this cook cites a couple of techniques and examples to conduct a Agile Project.
Fabio Fabbrucci
Agile is not a boolean condition. I'm agile or not...
Cohn gives tools to facilitate a transition to a waterfall project management to an iterative approach. Step by step.

Thanks Mr. Cohn for this book.
Kelsey Van
Mar 05, 2015 Kelsey Van rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my favourite Agile planning books. I like Mike Cohn's style and find him very readable. I particularly liked the way he used and build upon the same example(s) throughout the book.
Manoj Das
Feb 18, 2015 Manoj Das rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Agile estimating and planning is in between art and science. This book eloquently brings out the key takeaways for the practitioners. This is one of the books I used for the PMI-ACP exam.
Feb 11, 2012 Ivan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Covers each and every aspect I could think of. Sometimes too much words to express a simple thing. Cross-referencing other frameworks(PMBoK) is incredibly cool idea, but only available in the first few chapters.

Thorough review complementing the book and worth reading too exists on the Internet:

If you like the part about estimates buffering, see this too:

In some way it's similar to Allen Karr's books - nice to read, b
Ho Yan
Aug 14, 2010 Ho Yan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dev, non-fiction
Probably one of the best books I've read about Agile software development. Cohn covers all the basics of what estimating and planning is like in an Agile methodology (actually, I think seems pretty Scrum-centric). More importantly, however, he includes a considerable amount of discussions on some of the more common points of confusion - e.g. story points vs ideal days, estimating size vs estimating duration, planning for multiple teams, etc. Also has a lot of helpful material for Product Owners, ...more
Dec 27, 2015 Ratheesh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very good book - talks about practical aspects of AGILE. My best part - how to approach AGILE estimation especially estimating initial velocity.
Shyam Gorak
Sep 15, 2015 Shyam Gorak rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book covered the fundamentals and provided a good insight which is very important to individuals who work on projects using Agile methodology.
Altaf Darzi
Sep 08, 2015 Altaf Darzi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good read! A few more case studies with real time challenges could have added more value
Kirill Klimov
good for those who start learning Agile concepts
Agile Kindergarten
Defining story points, explaining a disciplined approach to story prioritization, laying out communication plans, defining buffers and much more are included with the nitty gritty details of how to plan and estimate with agility. I particularly liked Cohn's inclusion of graphs based on actual research to drive home the point that there is a right way and a wrong way; one increases productivity and quality, the other decreases quality and productivity. I expect those graphs to come in handy when ...more
Feb 27, 2016 Santosh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mike Cohn at his best
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Mike Cohn is the owner of Mountain Goat Software and is recognized as one of the contributors to the invention of Scrum. He is one of the founders of the Scrum Alliance and is a Certified Scrum Trainer. He is a trainer on Scrum and agile software process techniques and helped popularize Planning poker which he provides as a free online planning tool.

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“To be uncertain is to be uncomfortable, but to be certain is to be ridiculous.” —Chinese proverb” 3 likes
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