25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
A very useful reference guide,
This review is from: Agile Estimating and Planning (Robert C. Martin) (Paperback)This is a good book for project managers and senior developers who have enough experience to understand that even a practice like agile development needs a framework to work within and a certain number of standard project management controls to be successful.
It deals with some of the practical issues a project manager will face like prioritisation techniques, acceptable levels of functional delivery, inter-dependencies, estimating, padding estimates, monitoring progress, release and iteration planning.
Cohn hasn't written the book specifically around any one methodology (ie SCRUM, XP etc) which is good, as in reality people lift and use ideas from various methodologies. In that respect this book is a good reference guide to dip in and out of, picking the bits that are most appropriate, rather than reading it cover to cover. It is well laid out and easy to read.
As a project manager I am responsible for planning the end-to-end process from requirements through to delivery, therefore I felt that there were some areas that were either not covered in enough depth or omitted altogether:-
* the writing of user stories, and how to plan for their handover to programmers (if produced by a separate individual or team),
* while programmer testing is discussed their is no mention of functional (or acceptance testing) of the produced code,
* scaling up to large (possibly enterprise size) projects is only skimmed over,
* while the estimation techniques discussed can be applied to user story creation and functional/acceptance test creation and execution it is implied rather than explicitly suggested,
* personally I didn't feel that the book addressed the area of changing requirements enough, but maybe that's me.
Being a project manager with more waterfall than agile development experience I might be being overly harsh in these criticisms.