One of the most common questions I’ve been asked by managerial folks is how I can raise my eyebrows independently from side to side at will.  Second to that is “why bother with repackaging“, and all that automated deployment stuff.

So far, I’ve been successful in pointing them to my trusty old blog post “Stick Shift or Automatic: Software Deployment by The Numbers“, and most are content.  However, a few have come back asking for more.  So, to help them out I put together a spreadsheet to provide a rough estimate of the time and costs compared between manual and automated installations.  It’s not too shabby either.  Here’s a screen capture below…

app_deploy_estimator

Breakdown

The worksheet is grouped into blocks by general category:

A = Number of total installations

B = Time for completing a Manual Installation

C = Time for completing a Repackaged Installer

D = Labor Rates

E = Tallies them each to compare the results

There’s also a “Detailed Calculation” block to help make sense of the bong-induced mathematical hallucinations.  I mean, it details the calculations.  The spreadsheet can be downloaded from my shared Google Drive link.  It was created with Microsoft Office Excel 2013, so don’t flip out if it looks weird in older versions or in OpenOffice.  It should still work even if the formatting is goofy.  Trust me, it looks pretty in Excel 2013.

Important Notes

The boxes filled with pretty colors are static labels and should not be modified.  The boxes filled in light grey are calculated results, so you shouldn’t modify those either.  The numeric boxes which are filled in plain white with double-line outlines are what you should modify to suit your needs (times, rates, quantity, etc.).  Values in cells C13…C15 are copied automatically from the same cell associations for manual installations, so they should be the same in most cases.

Play around with it and see what you come up with.  I’ve run this a few times already, using this new format (I’ve been using an older format for years).  The sample data provided was derived from an actual deployment a few months ago (neither labor rate is my own).  Any feedback/comments to improve it would be very welcome.  Enjoy!

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