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Five Core Metrics: The Intelligence Behind Successful Software Management

Book Description

This is the digital version of the printed book (Copyright © 2003).

To succeed in the software industry, managers need to cultivate a reliable development process. By measuring what teams have achieved on previous projects, managers can more accurately set goals, make bids, and ensure the successful completion of new projects.

Acclaimed long-time collaborators Lawrence H. Putnam and Ware Myers present simple but powerful measurement techniques to help software managers allocate limited resources and track project progress.

Drawing new findings from an extensive database of software project metrics, the authors demonstrate how readers can control projects with just Five Core Metrics–Time, Effort, Size, Reliability, and Process Productivity. With these metrics, managers can adjust ongoing projects to changing conditions–surprises that would otherwise cause project failure.

Table of Contents

  1. About This eBook
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Also Available from Dorset House Publishing
  5. Acknowledgments
  6. Contents
  7. Introduction
    1. The Evolution of the Metrics
  8. Part I: What Software Stakeholders Want
    1. Chapter 1. Some Software Organizations Are Doing Very Well
      1. Maturity Assessments Reflect Hope
      2. Has Software Development Mired Down?
      3. Way Down Low
      4. Intelligence Can Guide Us
    2. Chapter 2. A Finite Planet Makes Measurement Essential
      1. What Makes Metrics Effective?
      2. The Management of Software Projects Is Very Difficult
      3. Measure What Has Been Done
      4. These Five Metrics Work Together
    3. Chapter 3. Integrate Metrics with Software Development
      1. Metrics Meter Limited Resources
      2. What Is the Process?
    4. Chapter 4. “I Want Predictability”
      1. The Software Situation Is Serious
      2. Department of Defense Calls for Predictability
      3. The Underlying Reasons Are Complex
      4. Competition Stirs the Pot
      5. The Limits of the Possible
      6. There Are Certain Limits
  9. Part II. The Metrics Needed for Effective Control
    1. Chapter 5. The Measurement View
      1. The Profound Difference
      2. One Fact Is Minimum Development Time
      3. The Core Measurements Underlie “Getting Work Done”
      4. The Key Concepts
      5. Expressing the Key Concepts in Metrics
    2. Chapter 6. Estimating Size as a Measure of Functionality
      1. Shannon’s Path
      2. Representing the Amount of Functionality
      3. Sizing Functionality by Calibration
      4. Sizing Implications of Reuse
      5. Estimate Size
    3. Chapter 7. Penetrating the Software Productivity Jungle
      1. Finding the Right Relationship
      2. The Effect on Productivity
      3. Obtain Process Productivity by Calibration
      4. Don’t Do It This Way!
      5. Do It with Process Productivity
    4. Chapter 8. Defect Rate Measures Reliability
      1. The Fifth Core Metric
      2. Software Development Is in Trouble
      3. Why Do We Commit Errors?
      4. Plan Projects to Minimize Error-Making
      5. Find Defects
      6. Some Defects Remain at Delivery
  10. Part III: Control at the Project Level
    1. Chapter 9. Do the Hard Stuff First—Establish Feasibility
      1. The Vision Comes First
      2. What to Build
      3. How We Got into This Leaky Boat
      4. The Inception Phase Establishes Feasibility
      5. Make the Business Case
    2. Chapter 10. Do the Tough Stuff Next—Functional Design
      1. The Tough Stuff
      2. Meshing the Activities
      3. Formulating Requirements Is No Longer Simple
      4. Key Requirements Lead to Functional Design
      5. Identify Significant Risks
      6. The Business Case at Phase Two
      7. Supporting Phase two Itself
      8. Nearing the Bid Decision
    3. Chapter 11. The Power of the Trade-Off
      1. Avoid the Impossible Region
      2. Stay Out of the Impractical Region
      3. Trade-Off Time and Effort
      4. Trade-Off Time and Defects
      5. Small Is Beautiful
      6. Once More with Emphasis: Small Is Beautiful!
      7. Selecting the Software Relationship
      8. The Bid Is Different from the Estimate
    4. Chapter 12. Turning Your Range Estimate Into Your Client’s Point Bid
      1. The Uncertainty Drivers
      2. The Time-Effort Curve Is Uncertain
      3. Estimators Face Constraints
      4. Manage Estimating Risk
    5. Chapter 13. The Main Build Leads to Operational Capability
      1. Staff Allocation
      2. Projecting Functionality
      3. Detecting Defects in Test
      4. Apply Statistical Control to the Core Metrics
      5. Track System Size
      6. Track Defects
      7. The Essential Point: Control
    6. Chapter 14. The Operation and Maintenance Phase
      1. Where Does Phase Four Begin?
      2. What Goes On in the Phase?
      3. When Does the Phase End?
      4. How to Estimate the Phase
    7. Chapter 15. Replan Projects in Trouble
      1. The Award Differs from the Original Estimate
      2. The Award Reflects the Estimate
      3. Replan Troubled Projects
      4. Replan Periodically
  11. Part IV: Control at the Organization Level
    1. Chapter 16. A Telecommunications Company Evaluates Its Software Suppliers
      1. Lessons from Construction
      2. Lack of Facts Leads to Pain
      3. Lower Tier, the Same
      4. PTT Telecom BV Gets Real
    2. Chapter 17. Evaluate Bids on the Facts
      1. The Reality Is Research and Development
      2. Getting to the Facts
      3. The Bidder Cooperates
      4. The World of Wild Bidding
      5. Experience Supports the Factual Approach
      6. Who Needs the Facts?
    3. Chapter 18. Managing a Portfolio of Projects
      1. A Senior Manager Can Master-Plan
      2. Good Project Plans Underlie a Good Master Plan
      3. What a Master Plan Does
      4. Planning Staff at the Enterprise Level
    4. Chapter 19. Improving the Software Development Process
      1. Performance Comes from the Entire Process
      2. Process Improvement Comes Hard
      3. Why Has Process Improvement Been Hard?
      4. Some Organizations Are Improving Their Process
      5. The Place to Start Is Where You Are
    5. Chapter 20. Managing Reusable Components
      1. The Five Stages of Reuse
      2. What Are the Essential Supports for Reuse?
      3. Estimating in the Age of Reuse
      4. Any Metric Measuring Functionality Will Do
      5. Architecture-Wide Components Increase Reuse
      6. Functionality or Process Productivity?
    6. Chapter 21. Metrics Backstop Negotiation
      1. Negotiation Bridges Gaps
      2. The Core Metrics Support Negotiation
    7. Chapter 22. Motivating Participants in the Software Development Process
      1. People Are the Ultimate Resource
      2. Five Essential Motivating Factors
      3. Extending Estimating Wisdom More Widely
      4. Ten Great Truths
  12. Appendix A. Good Enough Is Better Than Floundering
  13. Appendix B. Behavior of the Core Metrics
    1. Study Results
    2. Will the Next Period Reverse Again?
  14. Bibliography
  15. Index
  16. Adaptive Software Development
  17. Peopleware
  18. Surviving the Top Ten Challenges of Software Testing
  19. Waltzing with Bears