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What is an estimate class?

I just saw on a project management website the following terms:

- Estimate class a
- Estimate class b
- Estimate class c
- Estimate class d (it seems there are only 4 of them, from a to d)

Apparently, all the above are all related to cost/time estimation of the project, but the author did not explain what these estimates are about exactly, and what is the difference between each estimate class. Can someone explain to me in detail what they are?
asked 10 years ago by anonymous

1 Answer

As you mentioned, all of the above are types of cost/time estimates. The accuracy of the estimate increases the more you move into the alphabet, for example, an cost estimate of class a is barely accurate, while a cost estimate of class d is highly accurate (but nothing is a 100% accurate).

Here's how they are used:

Estimate class a: Ballpark estimate. This is the kind of estimate when you're in a meeting discussing potential projects and someone asked you how much do you think this project will cost, and you tell him immediately around $1 million.

Estimate class b: Preliminary estimate. This is the kind of estimate you come up with after having a very shallow idea about the requirements of the project.

Estimate class c: More accurate than estimate class b, this estimate is based on real requirements.

Estimate class d: The most accurate type of estimate, this estimate is based on detailed requirements that are gathered from the client.
answered 10 years ago by MaplePM (46,940 points)

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