Skip to main content

A case study applying process and project alignment methodology

Abstract

Software Process Improvement (SPI) is one of the main software development challenges. However, SPI standards and models (CMMI, SPICE) have not been always adopted with success. The current problem is a lack of strategy to implement successfully these standards and models. To undertake this objective is essential observe real life experiences and detect process and project mutual relationships. Without this alignment it will not be possible to find out how process management is really important to achieve organization’s strategic objectives. This paper proposes a methodology that allows the definition, evaluation and improvement of an organization software development process. This proposal, called a Process and Project Alignment Methodology (ProPAM), allows the specification of an organization development process, as well process and project alignment. ProPAM presents the following life cycle: (1) process definition; (2) project definition considering a base process model; (3) project coordination and monitoring and (4) process improvement assessment. This paper also provides an overview of the action plan to be taken within the software organizations that intent to conduct a SPI initiative. This plan includes two distinct phases: (1) specify the development process and (2) analyze projects, starting an SPI effort. In order to evaluate ProPAM, a study case is undertaken. The case study is performed following the action plan and presents all the steps of the ProPAM. Final results show that, when the organization started using ProPAM, process and project alignment reduced project planning time and effort. ProPAM also introduced new organizational practices that result in a SPI program.

References

  1. [1]

    O. Salo. Improving Software Development Practices in an Agile Fashion.Agile Newsletter 2/2005, Agile-ITEA, pp. 8, 2005.

  2. [2]

    B.C. Hardgrave, D.J. Armstrong. Software process improvement: it’s a journey, not a destination.Communications of the ACM, 48(11), pp. 93–96, 2005

    Article  Google Scholar 

  3. [3]

    Software Engineering Institute. Capability Maturity Model for Software (CMM), Version 1.1, Carnegie Mellon University, 1993.

  4. [4]

    Software Engineering Institute. Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI), Version 1.1, Carnegie Mellon University, 2002.

  5. [5]

    SPICE Project. Software Process Assessment Part 2: A model for process management, Version 1.0, 1998.

  6. [6]

    P. Kuvaja, J. Simila, L. Krzanik, A. Bicego, G. Koch, S. Saukkonen. Software Process Assessment and Improvement: The BOOTSTRAP Approach. Blackwell Publishers, 1994.

  7. [7]

    K. Beck et al. Manifesto for Agile Software Development. http://www.agilemanifesto.org/principles.html, 2006

  8. [8]

    J. V. Vandeville. Organizational Learning through the Collection of Lessons Learned.Informing Science, vol. 3, pp. 127–133, 2000.

    Google Scholar 

  9. [9]

    V. Gruhn, J. Urbainczyk. Software Process Modeling and Enactment: An Experience Report related to Problem Tracking in an Industrial Project.Proceedings of the 20th international conference on Software Engineering, Kyoto, Japan, 1998, pp.13–21.

  10. [10]

    B. Curtis, M. I. Kellner, and J. Over. Process Modeling.Communications of the ACM, vol. 35, pp. 75–90, 1992.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  11. [11]

    H. Krasner, J. Tirrel, A. Linehan, P. Arnold, and W.H. Ett. Lessons learned from a software process modeling system.Communications of ACM, vol. 35, n.9, pp. 91–100, Sept. 1992.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. [12]

    G. A. Bolcer, R. N. Taylor. Endeavors: A Process System Integration Infrastructure.International Conference on Software Process (ICSP4), Brighton, U.K., 1996.

  13. [13]

    V. R. Basili, G. Caldiera, G. Cantone. A Reference Architecture for the Component Factory.ACM Transactions on Software Engineering and Methodology, 1 (1). pp. 53–80, 1992.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  14. [14]

    S. Henninger, J. Schlabach. A Tool for Managing Software Development Knowledge.Third International Conference on Product Focused Software Process Improvement, Germany, September 2001, pp. 182–195.

  15. [15]

    M. Heller, A. Schleicher and B. Westfechtel. A Management System for Evolving Development Processes.Proceedings 7 th International Conference on Integrated Design and Process Technology (IDPT 2003), Austin, Texas 2003.

  16. [16]

    H. Krasner, J. McInroy, D.B. Walz. Groupware research and technology issues with application to software process management.IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man and Cybernetics, 21(4), pp. 704–712, July/August 1991.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. [17]

    N. L. Kerth. Project Retrospectives: A Handbook for Team Reviews, Dorset House Publishing, April 2001.

  18. [18]

    A. Cockburn. Crystal Clear: a Human Powered Methodology for Small Teams, Addison Wesley, November 2004.

  19. [19]

    T. Dingsøyr and G. K. Hanssen. Extending Agile Methods: Postmortem Reviews as Extended Feedback.4th International Workshop on Learning Software Organizations (LSO’02), Chicago, Illinois, USA, pp. 4–12, 2002.

  20. [20]

    O. Salo. Improving Software Process in Agile Software Development Projects: Results from Two XP Case Studies.30th EUROMICRO Conference (EUROMICRO’04), Euromicro, 2004, pp. 310–317.

  21. [21]

    Object Management Group. Software Process Engineering Meta-model Specification, Version 1.1, January 2005.

  22. [22]

    P. V. Martins and A. R. Silva. PIT-P2M: ProjectIT Process and Project Meta-model.Proceedings of the OTM Workshop: MIOS+INTEROP 2005, Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Volume 3762, Agia Napa, Cyprus, pp. 516–525, October/November 2005.

  23. [23]

    M. E. Loomis. Object Versioning.Journal of Object-Oriented Programming, January 1992.

  24. [24]

    Y. Mashiko and V.R. Basili. Using the GQM Paradigm to Investigate Influential Factors for Software Process Improvement.J. Systems and Software, vol. 36, no. 1, pp. 17–31, 1997.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  25. [25]

    J.H. Iversen, L. Mathiassen, and P.A. Nielsen,. Risk Management in Process Action Teams.Improving Software Organizations: From Principles to Practice, L. Mathiassen, J. Pries-Heje, and O. Ngwenyama, eds., Addison-Wesley, pp. 273–286, 2002.

  26. [26]

    A. R. Silva. O Programa de Investigação ProjectIT”, version 1.0, October 2004.

  27. [27]

    T. Packard. TQM and Organizational Change and Development.In Total Quality Management in the Social Services: Theory and Practice. B. Gummer and P. McCallion, editors, Albany, NY, Rockefeller College Press, 1995.

    Google Scholar 

  28. [28]

    W. Hayes, D. Zubrow. Moving On Up: Data and Experience Doing CMM-Based Process Improvement.Technical Report CMU/SI-95-TR-008, August 1995.

Download references

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Martins, P.V., da Silva, A.R. A case study applying process and project alignment methodology. J Braz Comp Soc 12, 65–82 (2006). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF03194496

Download citation

Keywords

  • Software Process Improvement
  • Project Management
  • Meta-models