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Best Practices for Estimating Work

Learn how to effectively estimate work in Shortcut

  1. Overview
  2. Story Point Scoring
  3. Assigning Points
  4. Using Points to Plan Iterations
  5. Using Docs

Step 1 - Overview

Learn how estimate work effectively and understand estimation best practices used by the Shortcut team.

This path gives an overview of how the Shortcut team estimates work and how the Shortcut tool effectively supports that process. Whether you adopt the whole strategy or pick and choose parts that will work best for you we hope this helps you effectively estimate your work.

Regardless of your team’s strategy Shortcut gives you the ability to customize your Estimate Scale to meet your team’s needs. To adjust your scale go to settings and then Estimate Scale.

Shortcut leverages Story points in order to
- Help us determine a realistic amount of work for each Iteration/sprint cycle
- Ensure that we only work on bodies of development work that are small and well-understoodWe use story points to represent complexity (not time).

We use a Fibonacci sequence (1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13…) to assign points to Stories.

Points are the best way to signal that a Story is too big and needs to be broken down. Estimating by hours is less ideal because an engineer with more experience could take 40 minutes, for instance, while another engineer might take 4 hours. Their estimates will be wildly different. However, the Story’s complexity would still be the same. This is why Shortcut and many other folks use Story points to represent the Story's complexity.