A successful outsourcing arrangement is one that delivers a high quality product that meets the needs of the business (provides value) for a reasonable price. This article explains how you can use Function Point Analysis, in an outsourcing arrangement that includes service-level agreements, to measure both cost and value.
How much insight do you have regarding your software vendor’s level of performance? And how do you know if an outsourcing arrangement is cost effective? Learn how Function Point Analysis can be used to answer both of these questions.
Agile is hard. Why? Because successful Agile requires change. In this article, David Herron outlines eight guidelines an organization can follow to successfully initiate and achieve change. These guidelines can be applied to an Agile implementation.
Past criticisms of Function Point Analysis (FPA) have included concerns that it takes too long, it requires too much detail, it is too difficult to implement, and it costs too much. A recent study has shown that an adaptation of the FPA methodology – FP Lite™ – is a reasonable alternative to the detailed FPA method, and in fact, addresses many of the criticisms that have been levied in the past. This paper introduces the FP Lite™ methodology in correlation with two studies designed to statistically understand the accuracy of the FP Lite™ methodology in contrast to the detailed FPA method.
Software Project Managers have many responsibilities, ranging from managing customer expectations to directing internal resources towards a successful software build. That said, their easiest path to a quiet life is to design, develop and deploy software on time, on budget and with a high degree of quality. Why, then, do industry publications continue to unveil stories about failed projects and the financial impact they have had on the organization? Of course, not all projects fail. When we do read about successes, we learn that these projects were well managed and effectively controlled. So, what is missing or what is the gap between project success and project failure? This article discusses that gap and how to close it.
There are any number of reasons why IT organizations execute a formal customer satisfaction survey. Regardless of the reason, the goal is to transfer measurement of customer satisfaction from a post-facto critique into a proactive process improvement tool. Read how DCG helped a key client measure customer satisfaction as a measure of process improvement.
Learn how to successfully manage organizational changes.
Service-level agreements (SLAs) are one of the most critical components of an outsourcing arrangement. When properly designed and executed, SLAs drive desired behaviors, monitor performance and guide the governance of contractually agreed objectives. Learn how to properly frame SLAs for outsourcing success.
Everyone agrees that software estimating continues to be an ongoing problem for IT managers. Sometimes there is a perception that an estimation model is a black box with a magic process from which the absolute answer appears, when an estimate is just that – an estimate. We need to reframe our thinking about estimating and view it as a vehicle to manage customer and management expectations based on the best available information at that point in time.
How does that old joke go? A fellow walks into the doctor’s office with a bad stomachache. The doctor examines him and says, "I think you need your appendix out." The patient says, "I want a second opinion," and the doctors says, "… and I think you’re ugly." Badda-boom. Okay, so maybe it isn’t so funny anymore. Well neither is a project estimate that is ill-conceived, resulting in misrepresented delivery expectations. There are times when a second opinion estimate is critical to the on-time, on-budget delivery of software and to ensure a high level of customer satisfaction.
An introduction to Function Point Analysis, including what it is and who would benefit from it. At DCG, we offer a variety of function point counting services, using both COSMIC and IFPUG.
Learn a fast-approach to sizing your software with the use of function point analysis.
Can "Software as a Service" (Saas) be a value-added proposition to your software process improvement initiative? In a word - yes! Process and project management tools are available in an SaaS format and can add value to most process improvement initiatives. This presentation discusses this valuable path to improved performance.
This presentation, from David Consulting Group (DCG) and PIEmatrix, shows you how best practice processes and project portfolios can be executed and governed with a real-time software-as-a-service (SaaS) collaborative platform. We will show you how this solution will make it easy for all team members to improve productivity and for management to gain transparency and predictability with a real-time simple dashboard.
Have you ever had a project come in late or over budget? Of course you have, and you’re not alone. Very few organizations have effective sizing and estimating practices. This presentation discusses an economical and realistic solution to your estimating woes. Estimating on demand is a service that can provide you with the information you need to make better and more informed decisions.
This presentation address issues concerning effective estimation. It discusses a basic model for estimation, along with common sense techniques, use of historical and industry data and automated/on-demand estimation.
Improving on-time delivery is dependent on many factors. Starting the project off with an estimate that is factual helps set proper momentum. This presentation discusses the importance of effective estimation and how DCG's Estimation Services can help you advance your on-time delivery goals.
Project management offices - a great idea made ineffective by poor execution. Great PMOs help organizations get things done. Unfortunately, industry studies show that most PMOs have become PAOs, project administrator offices, lacking the influence to help projects meet tactical and strategic objectives. Learn how your PMO can become great by closing the gap on performance with proven best practices.
Results from a 2011 DCG survey of project managers.
A question that seems to be circulating within IT organizations these days is whether or not the roles and responsibilities of the Project Management Office (PMO) are adaptable to supporting Agile projects. Do traditional PMO practices fit the Agile models, such as Scrum or feature-driven development? This presentation serves to advance that discussion by presenting observations from recent client experiences, as well as sharing some of the current thinking on the subject of PMOs and their role in supporting Agile.
A project manager makes many important decisions throughout the life of a project. Decisions regarding resources, expenses and schedules are just a small part of what they are being asked to manage. Many of the decisions a project manager makes are dependent upon having good information and being able to use that information to produce realistic plans and estimates. David Herron examines what information is necessary to produce realistic estimates, allowing for better and more informed decisions.
These webinar companion slides outline how data is used to help drive strategic change.
Experts from CAST and DCG explain how to proactively manage risk while optimizing the value you bring to the business. Learn how adding application quality measurements into the assessment process can ensure project deliverables meet requirements and expectations.
Story Points and Function Points are both methods for ‘sizing’ software. This Trusted Advisor report will establish why sizing is important and present an overview of the two sizing methods followed by a discussion on the merits of both Story Points and Function Points by answering some very common questions:
Can I use function points on an agile project?
“Story points are much easier and faster than function points?”
Is there a relationship between story points and function points?
The discussion that follows will explore:
• The key components of an effective estimating model
• The benefits of effective estimating
• The challenges impacting effective estimating
• Pros and cons of vendor developed estimating model(s)
To properly address the question and to evaluate the potential benefits of a vendor developed estimating model, we should understand the characteristics of an effective estimating model. Similarly we should know the benefits and challenges of estimating in order to evaluate the impact an estimating model may have on realizing those benefits and meeting those challenges. Once we have formed our basis of understanding in that regard we are then well positioned to evaluate the pros and cons of vendor developed estimating models.
There are a variety of ways to look at this question. The first response that comes to mind is to simply say, it depends. It depends on who is asking the question. For example, quality may be far more important than productivity if you are talking about a customer who is using the software. It depends on how we define quality and define productivity. Finally, it depends on what we mean by important.
Find out how you can manage change in order to get developers on board with using function points for software estimation.
This report is intended to provide a value analysis, or business case, for how an effective estimating practice contributes value to the organization in both financial and non-financial terms.
This report examines the pros and cons of distributing estimation to SMEs versus centralizing it.
We often read articles about software development best practices. There is no known industry standard or certification that is used to qualify something as a best practice, nor are there any rules or guidelines that help to classify something as a best practice. So, how do we know if something is a best practice? What gives a practice or a process that special distinction of being the ‘best?' This report examines how IT can identify its own best practices.
The average cost to fix a defect at the end of the lifecycle is 400-800 times greater than if it were addressed earlier. On average, poor requirement practices account for 60 percent of a project’s time and budget. Organizations with well-defined, closely managed, and effectively measured quality activities succeed and continuously improve. Yet, in a recent survey, 77 percent of managers reported that bad decisions have been made due to a lack of accurate information.
This presentation outlines the TMMi model, the de facto international standard to assess and improve test maturity, featuring independent best practices from more than 14 quality and test models. It explores how TMMI can be used in conjunction with the GQM model to ensure that upper management is provided with the information they need to make informed business decisions.