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<p>A method for estimating software development effort in the early phases of a large software-intensive project and a front-end process incorporating this method are presented. The application of this methodology to the domestic US 5ESS Switch project (a large multiyear continuing effort, with new features incorporated into yearly releases) is described. For each feature to be estimated, a feature team generates a detailed feature definition with high-level functionality requirements and a high-level design proposal. These are used in a formal working meeting of estimators from affected parts of the project. The meeting produces a development estimate for use in deciding which features to include in the next release. The benefits of this methodology include well-defined milestones (high-level features requirements, high-level designs and estimates), and less tangible benefits like better working relationships between parts of the project, interorganizational synergy and increased confidence in the front-end process.</p>
estimeeting methodology; software development effort; large software-intensive project; front-end process; domestic US 5ESS Switch project; feature team; feature definition; high-level functionality requirements; high-level design proposal; formal working meeting; development estimate; well-defined milestones; high-level designs; working relationships; interorganizational synergy; DP management; human factors; personnel; project engineering; software engineering; telecommunications computing

R. Hudgins Jr., L. Taff and J. Borchering, "Estimeetings: Development Estimates and a Front-End Process for a Large Project," in IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, vol. 17, no. , pp. 839-849, 1991.
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