“So – your ‘back of the fag packet’ estimates – what did it include?”

“So talk to me about how you worked out your project estimates.”

My ex-colleague, T, had just joined a company as an IT Director and was keen to replace the CRM with #Salesforce and we were having a discussion about whether he should engage a #SalesforcePartner or recruit his own team and implement it in-house.

“So – your ‘back of the fag packet’ estimates – what did it include?”

He admitted that they worked roughly on the functional requirements that he drafted, and made some assumptions around the bits that required development and coding (which he was going to hire some contract devs to do).

Eeek (my internal PM brain went).

Estimating a project isn’t as simple as adding up all the time required to build the functional components. A + B + C = D.
There are a number of other things to think about:

1. The org structure, number of sandboxes, deployment and release processes/cadence.
2. Connectec systems data cleansing/migration activities can add to the timeline and complexity.
3. Project management, team coordination, deployment, testing, as well as the business change management piece.
4. It needs to also factor in project risk and mitigation actions, the critical path, dependency, resource capability and availability
5. Business Change Management – possibly the biggest piece and most underestimated workstream of all.

“Did you take those into account when knocking up your numbers for the costing?

Errr, no.

Well ok then – it sounds like you do need the help of a #SalesforcePartner. Otherwise you’re going to get into such a mess.

It’s ok to DIY if you know what you’re doing; otherwise leave it to the experts.

You may find that the “little leaky tap” that’s not going to be a big job has now morphed into flooded kitchen that requires major re-build and a lot more ££.


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