Friday, June 19, 2009

The First Number Sticks Forever

Two months ago, we looked at some Data Warehouse design information.

It looked like 8 months of work. It might be finished by year-end. Fatal mistake: we gave a "number". Year-end.

We did due diligence, investigating source applications, data marts, subject areas, etc. And, the client delayed their decision-making process.

After the investigation, we created a detailed estimating model. We didn't create a waterfall schedule. Instead, we defined a typical release and sprint structure and a backlog.

The Unacceptable Revision

We wound up with 9 months of work, beginning next month.

Our sales person was appalled -- shocked! -- that we could no longer make year-end.

"Duh," we said. "It's a month longer, starting three months later. What do you want?"

"We can't tell the customer that," the sales person said.



  1. Stick to your guns! Ask the sales person what features he/she would like to cut so you can make the year-end deadline.

  2. Situation: normal.

    I'm not sure how you'd fix this in a commercial environment, but what I try to do is get in the same room as the 'salesperson' and the 'client' every now and then, and force everyone to tally their books together.