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My Software Engineering Home Page : Assignment#2

Problem: A software project team structure is shown in Fig. 1 that evolves over the life-cycle.

Fig 1.

Qn: What do you think are the advantages of having such an evolutionary team structure for software development?
The structure allows a software project team to effectively identify and place emphasis on one of the four processes, for each of the four periods of the lifecycle: Inception, Elaboration, Construction and Transition. Different weightage has been placed for all processes, distributed among various components of the project over the life-cycle. This would allow the distribution of the workload among the team members over the entire life-cycle, for each and every stage.

From the life-cycle, it can be seen that in every stage, all components would not be overlooked as emphasis is still placed on them, although in varying amounts.


Qn: What are the inherent problems in such a structure?
Such a structure would not allow a project team to effectively deal with any unexpected delays they may encounter in the previous processes, thus hampering the time period needed to complete the project. Such a structure is only meant for ideal cases, but in the real world, problems may occur due to a lack of emphasis on certain processes in the later stages.

The actual amount of effort or emphasis placed on the different processes may have to be changed accordingly as to ensure greater efficiency. If the life-cycle was to be followed exactly, the project may be delayed.

Qn: Modify the diagram and show how you would improve the team structure.

Modified Diagram

Fig 2.

From the modified diagram, Fig 2, it can be seen that the most of the emphasis for the processes of each stage has been modified. This is more apparent in the early stages of the life-cycle, Inception and Elaboration.

The reason for this is because in the early stages of the project, sufficient emphasis on the Software Management and Architecture will allow the entire team to know how the project is going to be developed. A well-planned approach will give rise to less problems when the emphasis has been shifted to the development and assessment of the software.

Since the distribution of workload cannot be easily accounted for with a percentage, this structure gives slightly more emphasis to the management and development process of the Elaboration stage, so as to ensure sufficient manpower.

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