September 17, 2020 - 10:33 pm UTC
Reviewer: A reader
Chris, thanks for your valuable insight. Estimating this is a very frustrating request. There are so many variables. First, it is unknown how much time the DBA has to spend time on nonDBA tasks like company administrative stuff like training, reading emails, attending meetings, etc. Then you have support staff requirements needed by the DBA to get database systems setup like system admin, storage admins, etc that vary from place to place. Also, every DBA isn't created equally. Finally, as you mention you have varying needs on development efforts, various different issues that can arise from say the RAC/clusterware setup, etc.
I totally agree on your advise of "Focus on the value you can provide to the customer over the time it takes you to complete the task." The problem is that the DBAs who will work on the effort isn't even known which makes this type of request even more insane.
"Ultimately one of the more effective estimation techniques is to think of times you've done similar tasks in the past and use these as the starting point for your effort estimates. e.g. if the last time your team did a security audit and associated hardening it took 2 months, estimating 10 days this time around is a little optimistic." Again, the problem is that I don't even know the DBA who will be performing it.