You Know #NoEstimates is Right For You If …
With full apologies to Jeff Foxworthy, you know #NoEstimates is right for you if …
■ Your customer has no idea what done looks like and is willing to spend money to find out.
■ Your customer has no deadlines to meet while spending that money.
■ The requirements for the benefits produced by the project are so vague that can’t be defined, order, or tested against the value proposition for the work.
■ Your customer is happy taking the minimal viable features as the outcome when time and money runs out. No need to worry that those MVP’s don’t include all the needed capabilities.
■ All the work you’re doing is independent from each other, no dependencies, just a pile of separate features all stand alone, done in any order the customer sees fit.
■ There is no uncertainty in anything on the project. No variances in productivity, performance, capacity, reliability, defects. Just one solid unvarying stream of work.
■ Your customer has no obligation to the managerial finance people to know something about the exposure to cost for this project.
■ Your customer has no obligation to know something about the “return on investment” for the spend to produce an undefined value before the money runs out. Since that pesky ROI equation gets a “divide by zero” error when there is no Estimate to Complete (ETC)or Estimate at Completion (EAC), your customer really doesn't care about that.
■ Your customer has no interest in any system for fiduciary control where targets are set and performance measured against those targets. No problem, since Open Loop Control is the business governance policy were you work. Just keep spending, we’ll tell you when to stop.
■ Partially completed capabilities can be put to productive use, since there is no real interdependencies between all the features. Any old set of features will be good for now, just produce something.
■ The "value at risk" for your project is sufficiently low that when you overrun your budget or show up late, no one really cares that you overspent. It's a sufficiently small enough loss.