Management Artifacts

The management set includes several artifacts that capture intermediate results and ancillary information necessary to document the product/process legacy, maintain the product, improve the product, and improve the process. These artifacts are summarized next and discussed in detail in subsequent chapters, where the management workflows and activities are elaborated. Although the following descriptions use the word document to describe certain artifacts, this is only meant to imply that the data could be committed to a paper document. In many cases, the data may be processed, reviewed, and exchanged via electronic means only.

Work Breakdown Structure

A work breakdown structure (WBS) is the vehicle for budgeting and collecting costs. To monitor and control a project's financial performance, the software project manager must have insight into project costs and how they are expended. The structure of cost accountability is a serious project planning constraint. Lessons learned in numerous less-than-successful projects have shown that if the WBS is structured improperly, it can drive the evolving design and product structure in the wrong direction. A project manager should not lay out lower levels of a WBS (thereby defining specific boundaries of accountability) until a commensurate level of stability in the product structure is achieved. A functional breakdown in the WBS will result in a functional decomposition in the software. The concept of an evolutionary WBS is developed further in Chapter 10.

Business Case

The business case artifact provides all the information necessary to determine whether the project is worth investing in. It details the expected revenue, expected cost, technical and management plans, and backup data necessary to demonstrate the risks and realism of the plans. In large contractual procurements, the business case may be implemented in a full-scale proposal with multiple volumes of information. In a small-scale endeavor for a commercial product, it may be implemented in a brief plan with an attached spreadsheet. The main purpose is to transform the vision into economic terms so that an organization can make an accurate ROI assessment. The financial forecasts are evolutionary, updated with more accurate forecasts as the life cycle progresses. Figure 6-4 provides a default outline for a business case.

Release Specifications

The scope, plan, and objective evaluation criteria for each baseline release are derived from the vision statement as well as many other sources (make/buy analyses, risk management concerns, architectural considerations, shots in the dark, implementa-

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

Get My Free Ebook


Post a comment