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9167Re: [scrumdevelopment] Re: WIP

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  • Jeff Sutherland
    Sep 4, 2005
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      An issue that is a lot more important than WIP is whether what is in
      the queue is in the right priority order or is even worth doing. For
      companies with big bucks ready to do a lot of analysis, they should
      use Software by Numbers:
      http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0131407287/002-3446661-8579227

      Denne and Cleland-Huang show that unless you systematically forecast
      cost vs. revenue vs. time for each item in the product backlog you
      will lose at least 25% of the potential revenue and in some cases up
      to 400% of the achievable revenue.

      There is also the issue that 45% of the WIP on the average should
      never be built. A Software by Numbers analysis will do enough
      micro-costing of the product backlog that it should flush most of this
      out.

      People should always start with:

      1. Avoid doing this - where's the revenue time line?
      2. Given the revenue time line, is this the most important thing to do now?

      Software by Numbers nicely factors in architectural change and
      maintenance into the revenue stream, something most other methods
      avoid or do poorly leading to revenue loss.

      Without answers to these questions you should always do nothing with
      the WIP. Every line of code you write you will maintain for the rest
      of your working life (or some poor proxy will maintain it). When it is
      useless code, it is an Albatross that you will wear forever. Be
      extreme and avoid coding at all costs.

      Jeff Sutherland

      On 9/4/05, mwpolen <mwpolen@...> wrote:
      > While I agree that cycle time (the time from customer request to
      > customer fulfillment) is the most important measure I do wonder how
      > you can get any software organization to buy into it. I have found
      > that simple elegant measures, really anything simple, to be too
      > simple for the people with the $BIG$. The people in charge seem to
      > think "hey if it really was that simple everyone of my peers would
      > be doing it this way...NAH this can't work it's a complicated job
      > and complicated jobs require complicated ______" In this can
      > measurement is the fill in the blank.
      >
      > So how do the people in group handle my perceived conundrum?
      >
      > -Mike
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