Publications by Mike Harris

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The Software Value Management Office (SVMO)

This white paper discusses how to transform the PMO into a strategic partner to deliver business value.

Author: Mike Harris
How can we get more value out of software development?

This white paper discusses the importance of collaboration between the business unit and IT to identify the value a software development initiative can offer your organization. Michael D. Harris, author and speaker on the Value Visualization of IT, describes a 5-step “value visualization” concept that can help IT departments and business units join forces to set, measure and track goals based on value.

Author: Mike Harris
IT as a Value Center (not a Profit Center or Cost Center)

This white paper demonstrates how a value visualization culture - one where all stakeholders have a clear understanding of the goals of the project and expected business value - should and can transform the IT department from a cost or profit center to a value center.

"By leveraging the proper metrics, all stakeholders can visualize the value and work toward the same set of goals on a project, helping transform IT from a cost or profit center to a value center."

Author: Mike Harris
Outcome Metrics for Outsourced Software Development Contracts

As a direct result of the difficulties of measuring software development, the success of development tends to be measured in input metrics. For internal software development (and any outsourcing that is included in that), organizations tend to manage this output measurement problem at a macro level, by allocating a “reasonable” budget for software development (an input), estimating what projects can be delivered for that budget, and then prioritizing according to the organization’s strategic and tactical needs (outputs at a macro level). But, this macro approach does not really work for outsourcing contracts.

In this article, Mike Harris offers a solution via vested outsourcing.

Author: Mike Harris
Cloud-Enabling Applications: Migrating Enterprise Applications to the Public Cloud

This article discusses the difficulties many companies are facing in moving enterprise applications to the cloud. It discusses some common issues that are encountered, as well as what applications make for good candidates for migration and what challenges should be expected.

Author: Mike Harris
Effective Measures for Project Managers

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.

Author: Mike Harris; David Herron
Agile and the Declaration of Interdependence

There has been much said and written about the mythical “conflict” between the values and principles of the Manifesto for Agile Software Development and those of Software Process Improvement embodied in models such as CMMI. However, there is increasing experience (and evidence at SEPG and other conferences) that shows that both sets of values and principles can be combined to deliver more value to an enterprise than either one on its own. A lesser-known descendant of the Agile Manifesto is the Declaration of Interdependence (DOI) (, which seeks to extend the Agile Manifesto to non-software products, project management and management in general. This article discusses the Declaration of Interdepence.

Author: Mike Harris
Six Rookie Mistakes in Vendor Management

Outsourcing is about adding a competitive link to your ‘VALUE CHAIN,’ not just a cheap cog in your supply chain. At the end of the day, you must have added value that supports your business objectives. This article talks about avoiding mistakes common to organizations that are new to outsourcing.

Author: Mike Harris
The Business Value of IT (Abstract)

This is an abstract from The Business Value of IT: Managing Risks, Optimizing Performance, and Measuring Results. 

In this abstract, you will learn: 1) How information technology (IT) adds value to your
business; 2) How to measure and demonstrate that value; and 3) Why your business
personnel and your IT team members must have a close working relationship.

Author: Mike Harris
Measurement Roadmap Process Description and Process Flow

This document describes the steps that are necessary to successfully complete the Measurement RoadmapSM . The Measurement RoadmapSM is a propriety framework, developed by DCG Software Value.

Author: Mike Harris
Performance Benchmark Process

The multi-step Performance Benchmark Process facilitates an organization, or a line of business, in coming to a consensus on the most important goals and values for IT to focus on. This is done by measuring a sample of project-related data and analyzing the information for comprehensive insight into your IT organization’s productivity and quality performance.

Author: Mike Harris
Featured Publication
Using TMMi To Deliver Higher Quality Software

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.

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