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SPERT® News, Tips & Tricks.

Hi <<First Name>>!
Welcome to the Statistical PERT® September 2020 newsletter!

Hurricane Laura hit the US this week, and September is historically the most active month of hurricane season. Let's see how this month unfolds...

The Free September Webinar

Customize Your Agile Burn-up Chart Using Statistical PERT® Normal Edition. In this month's free webinar, we will expand on what I covered earlier this year when I introduced the Agile Burnup Chart worksheet in the Statistical PERT® Normal Edition. 

 Here are the questions we'll address:

  • How do I create agile forecasts that span over the upcoming holidays?
  • How do I forecast for my “Scrumfall” project?
  • How do I selectively choose how much of my team’s historical record I want to include as part of my forecast?
  • When should I ignore my team’s historical record (and what should I do instead)?
  • How and why should I control the “cone of uncertainty”?

Click here to register for this FREE, one-hour webinar on Tuesday, September 15 from 12P-1P (Eastern USA).

Can't attend on that day & time, but still interested in the topic? Go ahead and register anyway, and I'll send you (and everyone else who registers) a link to the recorded webinar a few days after the live event.

New Release! Download Version 0.4.0 of SPERT® Lognormal Edition

I announced last month that I'm working on a new edition of Statistical PERT Lognormal Edition which features Excel's built-in lognormal functions, LOGNORM.DIST and LOGNORM.INV. The lognormal distribution is shaped like a skewed bell-curve (long right-side tail) but, unlike the normal distribution, can't have negative numbers.

The SPERT Lognormal Edition is a "Bonus Download" on my website's "Free Downloads" page. The latest build is version 0.4.0, which includes a "Beginners" worksheet that shows a step-by-step process of using the Lognormal Edition. Try it!

New Release! Download Version 3.0.1 of SPERT® Beta Edition

At work, I've been creating a schedule for a big Oracle E-Business Suite ERP upgrade project using the SPERT Scheduler in the Statistical PERT Beta Edition. The SPERT Scheduler is one of the new features included in the new Version 3 of this edition of SPERT.

What I noticed, though, is that the SPERT Scheduler was showing a finish date that was calculated as if the activity finished at the beginning of the next work day, rather than at the end of a work day (like how Microsoft Project does). I don't know how I didn't notice that when I was testing this new SPERT scheduling feature, but I tweaked the formulas so the finish date now calculates the end-of-work-day finish date, just like Microsoft Project does. Download this latest release and try-out the SPERT Scheduler on your plan-driven project by visiting the Statistical PERT download page.

SPERT Tips & Tricks

Here is a tip just for Scrum teams...

You get to choose how much (and which) of your team's historical record to include in your agile forecast. 

Using the "SPERT® Normal - Burnup Chart" worksheet included in the Statistical PERT Normal Edition, you can decide how much of your team's history to include when creating the burn-up chart.

In cell O10, you can stipulate which iteration (sprint) you want SPERT to begin using to calculate your team's velocity.

For example, I had a Scrum team that had been working together since January, but we didn't really hit our stride until February. Using cell O10, I could choose to begin using our 3rd sprint to calculate our team's velocity, rather than counting our 1st and 2nd sprints (which weren't reflective of my team's actual productivity).

Moreover, you can use cells O15 and P15 to override the SPERT-calculated velocity and standard deviation, too. This gives you enormous flexibility in deciding what values to use with your agile burn-up chart forecast. You aren't constrained to use exactly what your team's actual historical record is. I will explain reasons why you might to to do this in my September webinar, so please do join me for that if you are using burn-up charts to forecast for your agile teams.

Got any questions about SPERT?  What would you like to learn about Statistical PERT?

I'd love to hear from you, so contact me.

Stay safe!

Copyright © 2020 William W Davis, MSPM, PMP, All rights reserved.

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