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The benefits of Function Point Analysis

Now that you have a little understanding of what FPA is, we can discuss the important things that they bring to your overall software development process.

From my experience, I've found that with a small amount of experience, understanding the functional size of your applications leads to a goldmine of other information that will help you run a successful software development business, including:

  1. The ability to accurately estimate:
    1. project cost
    2. project duration
    3. project staffing size
  2. An understanding of other important metrics, such as:
    1. Project defect rate
    2. Cost per FP
    3. FP's per hour (what I refer to as "velocity")
    4. The productivity benefits of using new or different tools

As an example of what FPs can do for you, my company can now tackle projects on a fixed-price basis, whereas in the last five years we've had only one other fixed price effort. This gives us a significant competitive advantage against our competition, because most people think it's impossible to develop software on a fixed price basis.