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Small batch delivery & big batch finance how to speak the language of forecasting by Robert Pieper

· scrum

Teams have been trained to deliver software quickly using different methodologies like Scrum and Kanban,

but still face challenges in explaining the concept of incremental finance to upper management during annual budgeting meetings.

🚗👨‍🔧 We can compare the process of getting car tires replaced with financing development initiatives.

This highlights the need for clear expectations regarding cost, quality, and completion time.

But note that the challenge of development is less predictable than routine car maintenance.

🔮 There is inherent complexity and uncertainty in software projects, particularly in larger ones.

That challenges the notion of accurate estimation due to the ever-evolving nature of technology.

✍️ Software development is a continuously evolving and creative process, like poetry.

Developers are constantly striving to improve their coding skills and produce more elegant and maintainable code.

🔄️ Managing complexity in software development involves breaking large projects into smaller, agile pieces

that can be delivered quickly, allowing for rapid responses to change and making it easier to correct mistakes.


🌪️ Forecasting path of hurricanes is similar to "incremental finance" approach.

It is a CONE narrowing forecast with time.

You establish an hurricane forecast and while the actual path of the hurricane was somewhat different than the original forecast, it remained within the forecast the whole time.

🔮 To understand forecasting complex projects, you need to understand the cone of uncertainty.

When you are close to done, estimates vary less.

The closer you get to done with any work, the more likely you’ll be right in estimates about when it will be finished.


🔨 The key to success is breaking up large initiatives into smaller deliverable.

If you can get your initiatives down to 3-month, completely finished projects, you’d be on the right track to better estimates and better funding decisions.

✊ Projects often get batched larger and larger.

Resist that urge and encourage your senior leaders to do the same.