Initial Estimate | Targetprocess - Visual management software

Initial Estimate

Initial Estimate predefined field is available for high-level planning entities: Epics and Features. Input values to the field when you plan and roughly estimate your backlog on high level.

Initial Estimates are really meant to function as placeholders so that epics and their nested features can show reasonable Effort sums prior to adding user stories.

Retrospectivelly, Initial Estimate helps to identify if your estimations are accurate. Historical data on initial estimates is accessible through reports. Compare initial rough estimates with more precise detailed ones and see how good your forecasts are.

Effort Calculation

It is possible to manually set Initial Estimate to features and epics. Initial Estimate substitutes an Effort when a feature or an epic does not have any nested work items added yet.

Effort Calculation


When a feature has no user stories, its effort is equal to its initial estimate.

When a feature has at least one user story, then its effort is equal to total effort of its nested stories.


When an epic has no features, its effort is equal to its initial estimate.

When an epic has at least one feature, then its effort is equal to total effort of its nested features.

Custom Calculations

It is possible to introduce a metric for Epics that would populate a custom field for each epic with total initial estimates of its nested features.


More information: How Effort is calculated for high-level scopes of work

User Stories

There is no predefined Initial Estimate field for User Stories. When you query the field with reports or API, the values are always blank.

There was such field in the past. Later we decided to remove it in order to reduce complexity of the tool and decrease amount of information shown on views.

It is possible to add a Custom Field to input and keep initial estimates for user stories. Should you require it, add the field manually in the settings of your process.


Add initial estimates of features and epics as cards units or list columns on your views within Estimate customize cards units.


Refer to initial estimates of features and epics in Advanced Filters and Visual Encoding rules using InitialEstimate field name.

?InitialEstimate > 0


Estimation Accuracy reports help to compare initial estimate, detailed estimated effort, and actual time spent.

Automation Capabilities

Targetprocess system does not update Initial Estimate field values automatically. Set up custom fields and metrics when automatic custom calculations are needed.

It is possible to set up visual warnings. Work items can be highlighted or filtered when their total effort exceeds initial estimates. Use Visual Encoding rules or Advanced Filters for this purpose.

It is not possible to introduce strict limits and validation rules so that total effort of work items would always be less or equal to their initial estimates.

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