Conference Paper

Organizational commitment towards software process improvement an irish software vses case study

Comput. & Inf. Sci. Dept., Univ. Teknol. PETRONAS, Tronoh, Malaysia
DOI: 10.1109/ITSIM.2010.5561489 Conference: Information Technology (ITSim), 2010 International Symposium in, Volume: 3
Source: IEEE Xplore

ABSTRACT This paper presents a study of the software development processes of very small software companies, with a focus on the company's Software Process Improvement (SPI) activities. SPI has gained an increasing importance in software engineering domain. However, recent studies show that the obligation and commitment towards SPI especially in small companies is weak and not always taken seriously. This situation is often related to insufficient availability of resources either in term of financial, human and time in this type of companies. Accordingly, this paper explores the current situation in very small companies and gauges their acceptance levels towards SPI actions and the underlying reasons behind this. In this research we carried out a survey which contains open and close ended questions in a series of very small software development companies in Ireland. A quantitative analysis that use a statistical analysis, and qualitative analysis that adopt the qualitative content analysis method have been followed throughout this study. The results indicate that the SPI initiatives in very small software development companies are done on a small scale manner, informally and indirectly. In addition, the results also indicate that commitment and involvement of people in these organizations towards SPI is high.

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    ABSTRACT: Teams of software engineers working together in a collaborative manner to execute a software development process complete most software development work. Whilst there is much literature examining the software process and how to improve the software process, less attention has been paid to the issues of team working and specifically the impact of team dynamics on the software development process. Teamwork is more effective with the existence of positive team dynamic, as it encourages a better working environment with satisfied, fulfilled employees who will in turn be more productive. However, achieving and maintaining positive team dynamics in Very Small Entities (VSEs) is particularly challenging given the unique characteristics of VSE and limited resources in particular. This paper discusses the dynamics of software development teams (structure, process, communication, learning and sharing) and its impact on Software Process Improvement (SPI) in software VSEs based on empirical data collected in a groups of software VSEs. This paper shows that VSEs have a high level of team dynamics although their SPI initiatives are conducted on a small scale and in an informal and indirect manner. The results also indicated that this situation occurs due to the following factors in a team: working and social relationship, willingness to share, having a good interpersonal skill, and work closely with each other.
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    ABSTRACT: Software process adaptation and improvement (SPI) addresses the need of companies to adapt new and/or improve their software processes in order to meet, e.g. business optimization goals or regulative requirements. Such an initiative comprises manifold activities, e.g. analyzing, designing, realizing, evaluating, and deploying new software processes or, respectively, new versions/variants of a maintained software process. Therefore, such initiatives are often considered to be (self-contained) projects. Although reference models such as CMMI and ISO 15504 contain practices and assessment methods they, however, lack in defining supporting artifacts for SPI projects, which help process engineers to structure the outcomes, to guide process engineers during the set-up and the operation of SPI projects. Therefore, setting-up and operating SPI projects highly depends on the individual expertise of process engineers. In this report, we present a compact artifact model and a set of complementing processes to support SPI projects and software process management (SPM), which we inferred from six years of experience. The presented model serves as template for creating analysis, design, and supporting artifacts in SPI projects. Furthermore, the artifact model is embedded into an organizational context in which SPI projects are initiated and executed, and the results are deployed to the process consumers. The report at hands serves as “data sink” and contains all detailed artifact model descriptions and further information aiding the definition of a software process management approach and, furthermore, provides guidance to process engineers to organize and manage a particular SPI project.
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    ABSTRACT: peer-reviewed This paper compares and contrasts the results of two similar studies into the software process practices in Irish Small and Very Small Enterprises. The first study contains rich findings in relation to the role and influence of managerial experience and style, with particular respect to the company founder and software development managers in small to medium seized enterprises (SMEs), whilst the second study contains extensive findings in relation to people and management involvement / commitment and SPI goal planning in very small enterprises (VSEs). By combining these results of these two studies of Irish SMEs/VSEs we can develop a rich picture of managerial commitment towards SPI and in particular explore the similarities between Small and Very Small Enterprises. SFI


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