Critical parameters for adoption of Software Capability Maturity Model in Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)
Amulen, Christine Joyce
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Controlling and improving the processes used to develop software has been proposed as a primary remedy to the problems of schedule, over budget and non conformity to requirements in software development (Kurniawati et al 2004). Consequently the software development community has adopted several software process improvements (SPI) approaches such as the Software Capability Maturity Model (SW-CMM) published by SEI as a criteria to evaluate and improve an organization’s software process maturity (Kautz 2000). The premise of the SW-CMM is that, a mature development process will deliver products on time, within budget, requirements and of high quality. Research carried out in developed countries to evaluate the effectiveness of such programmes has confirmed that, SPI can contribute to the production of high quality software. However, this phenomenon has been less studied in smaller enterprises such as those in Uganda and other developing countries (Chrissis et al 2005). Much as the SW-CMM has been widely advocated for, results of studies from large software organizations may not be entirely applicable to the small software organisation in Uganda. There is a prevailing misunderstanding about SW-CMM effectiveness for use particularly in small software enterprises (Gresse et al 2006). The study involved a survey of Ugandan software developing enterprises, the results revealed the absence of any formal approaches for gauging the maturity of software production process. The research also examined the software development environment in Uganda and the operational tenets of SW-CMM in order to establish the critical parameters that should be considered for successful adoption of the software capability maturity model for use in small software enterprises such as those in Uganda and others with similar characteristics and proposes a modified model that may be suitable for small software enterprises like those in Uganda.