# Estimation points - Effort vs duration

In Zoho Sprints, a project is the biggest entity that has a defined scope which is sub-divided into smaller units called Sprints. The scope of the project is released in smaller deliverables to the customers by running different sprints. In Agile, every project is defined by a size that will determine the complexity of the work that you do. This size is known as the Estimation Type.

# Estimation Type

Every project that you create in Zoho Sprints will have an option to create a prefix and estimation type. Zoho Sprints offers Fibonacci and Custom series for defining your estimation type.

Based on the business, you will set the estimation type for your project. If you are opting for Fibonacci series, you can set up to five values: 1, 2, 3, 5, 8. And the team can work around these estimation points for their work items.

For example, if you're running a large business, the project will have a huge amount of work. In this case, you cannot confine to lower points.  What's the solution? You can set up to 15 custom points with a maximum of 3 digits. With this, you can have a clear estimation of the work your team does.

Estimation Points

In Agile methodology, every work is defined with an estimation point. It is based on the type of work, the amount of effort required to complete the work, and its complexity.

Estimation points are not random numbers that define work, it has a standard format that scales the effort and complexity of the work involved in the project.
• Accurate and clear way of defining the effort of your work.
• Defines the complexity of the work
• Measure the performance of the team by calculating the total estimation points completed vs total estimation points committed.

# Estimation points vs duration

There's a huge difference in estimating your work in points vs duration. Let's run a simple instance 'CLIMBING THE STAIRCASE'. Now, the task is to climb 150 steps and we have two individuals to accomplish this task.

David is 24 years old and he can climb the steps in 10 minutes and Charles is 40 years old and he can climb the steps in 20 minutes. When you estimate the work in duration, you tend to take the expertise of the person here because of the age and health. Charles would take 2 times the duration of David to complete the task.

In Scrum, the overall performance of the user is calculated based on the effort required to accomplish the task - Here, effort refers to the complexity of the task. In the above case, the effort of climbing the 150 steps for both the individuals is same but the time taken to complete the task differs.

Let us take a software example:

Mark runs an online shopping site and has two stories in the backlog:

User story 1: Develop payment module
User story 2: Develop support form

Both the user stories requires design, development, and testing effort, but the user story 1 is complex than user story 2. User story 1 is a whole new section in the website that has a lot of development effort whereas user story 2 is less complex compared to the former. So, Mark estimates 50 points for user story 1 and 30 points for user story 2.

"Scrum calculates more on effort and complexity of the work rather than the time it takes to complete the task".

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