Synchronize and Stabilize Methodology

One open-source model is the one used by Microsoft. The methodology is used to build Microsoft's consumer level products with the synchronize and stabilize methodology (see Figure 4.11). The concept is easy project team members synchronize their individual/team tasks on a continuous basis and then stabilize the product in small increments, as the project moves forward. The methodology is based on the phases shown in Table 4.6.

Table 4.6: Synchronize and stabilize model

Phase

Task

Who

Planning (3 12 months)

Prepare vision statement /requirements assessment.

Develop product specification(s).

Project schedule preparation /formulate team.

Product manager

Design build functionality (6 12 months)

Design third of the system features critical features.

Design second third of the features.

Design final third of the features (less critical items).

Program manager Feature team

Stabilize fix and freeze build (3 8 months)

Test internally. Test externally. Prepare release.

Testers

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Figure 4.11: Synchronize and stabilize methodology.

This methodology is feature driven. The team members can work autonomously, thereby ensuring that some creative license is allowed on the project, provided their work can be combined successfully into the daily builds. The teams are also allowed to come up with fun ways of discipline when a daily build has not been achieved. Synchronize (daily build) and stabilize (fix errors at end of each milestone), such that the required set of features is completely functional. Product managers develop a vision statement and feature list based on customer input. Program managers develop an initial functional specification based on the vision statement. Program managers create schedules and parallel feature teams of three to eight developers and testers based on the functional specification.

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Project Management Made Easy

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