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Management SE603

Unit 1: So*ware Project
Management Basics
Dr. Abdulrahman Galal
Egypt, 1.6.2014


So#ware project management is about planning and leading so#ware
projects. It is a sub-discipline of the project management in which
so#ware projects are planned, implemented, monitored and
Unit 1 introduces the basic elements that so#ware project manager
should be aware of. StarJng from idenJfying the so#ware project
characterisJcs, dierenJaJng between projects, programs and
porLolios, having an eye on so#ware project management funcJons
and acJviJes, be acquainted with so#ware project life cycles, and
determining the so#ware project constraints and success criteria.

1. Introduc:on
The market of the so#ware industry is so massive ($407 billion in
2013) and the failure rate of the so#ware projects is so dramaJc
($20 billion in 2013). Therefore, there is a close aUenJon on the
progressive development of the so#ware project management
acJviJes to miJgate such great losses [1].

So*ware project management is the applicaJon of planning,
organizing, stang, direcJng and controlling to ensure the
development of the so#ware projects is disciplined, and quanJed


2. What is So*ware Project? (1/2)

So*ware Project is a set of connected tasks executed over a limited
Jme domain with certain limitaJons (cost, resources, Jme, etc.) to
achieve certain so#ware project type.

So*ware Project Types are: [8]


It is about building
so#ware products
from scratch



It is about modifying
so#ware products in
terms of features or


It is about obtaining
a so#ware product
from a so#ware
supplier to be used
by a client

2. What is So*ware Project? (2/2)

So#ware is developed and delivered either as : [13]:
1. So*ware as a Product (SaaP): So#ware as a product is about
purchasing a license to use the soluJon and hosJng it at the client side.
Example of such delivery is Microso# Oce suite 2011 (word, excel,
power point, access, etc.).
2. So*ware as a Service (SaaS): SaaS is about delivering soluJons over
the Internet, and charge a regular fee for the use. On top of that you
could pay only for specic features out of the whole package. For
example, instead of buying Microso# Oce suite, you could pay only
MS word as you go (number of days used).
SaaS soluJons are hosted only by the provider, on the contrary of
So#ware as a product. An example of such delivery is Prezi and Bynder. 5

3. How is So*ware Project dierent? (1/3)

So#ware project has disJncJve features than projects from other
industries [2]:

1. Intangible: so#ware products are dicult to be quanJed due to
the progressive development to have a fresh clean product.
Therefore, its dicult for a customer to judge about the compleJon
of the product. For a so#ware under development, the customer
might nd the interface funcJons work well but the core elements
are sJll under development or tesJng. For the ordinal projects such
as building bridges or paving roads, its easily to determine how far
the progress done as you could see the progress live.

3. How is So*ware Project dierent? (2/3)

2. High Customiza:on: in most so#ware systems, the experience gained
in one project is o liUle help to another except for progressive versions
of the same product due to building knowledge bases for challenges
and opJmal soluJons. the knowledge transfer is always done verJcally
(the same product / suite versions such as windows versions) not
horizontally (between dierent projects: Microso# oce and Windows)
is limited, therefore, it is dicult to detect and prevent bugs in so#ware
development cycles.

3. Technology: technology of today is obsolete for tomorrow. The life
span of the tech products is very limited and the most large so#ware
houses employ new technology everyday with outstanding features in
their new versions enforcing clients run behind products to save Jme,
cost and on top of that the compaJbility with the new so#ware systems
(backward and forward compaJbility)

3. How is So*ware Project dierent? (3/3)

4. Legal: Many legal issues are involved (intellectual property rights).
The IP issues extended to cover patents, copyrights and trade secrets.
As the hackers have sophisJcated tools to reverse engineer the
products, it is easily to steal concepts, ideas and funcJons. Therefore,
the IP issues are troublesome. Dra#ing and registering IPs are always
dicult and country limited ; this means in case you would like to
protect your so#ware, you should issue the patent protecJon in the
country of interest and keep doing that for the possible regions you
are interested expand to or penetrate.
5. Complexity: Complexity of so#ware project cant be measured
unJl we actually work on it. The is due to the elements listed before:
intangibility, backward and forward compaJbility and high

4. So*ware programs and porVolios (1/2)

So#ware projects could be grouped into programs. The same for
programs (group of related projects) could be grouped into
porLolios (group of related programs) to achieve strategic business
objecJves [7].

4. So*ware programs and porVolios (2/2)

Consider the following example:
a so#ware house has three
strategic objecJves: "Innovate
in the industry," "Develop
secure so#ware" and "Provide
high end customer support."

To saJsfy the (innovaJon
objecJve), a set of related
so#ware projects are grouped
to form a programme (industry
training), then the (training
programme) is combined with
(compeJJve analysis project) to
form (innovaJon porLolio) [5].

So#ware Projects

So#ware Programs So#ware PorLolios

CompeJJve analysis
AUend conferences
Train product managers
IdenJfy external resources


Security tesJng
Build Server Farm
Develop registraJon code


Deploy call center

JckeJng system


Hire and train call center sta

Develop and release
e-learning resources
Build customer interface
for JckeJng system


5. So*ware Project Management and

So*ware Project Life Cycle (1/5)
So*ware Project Management is what to do to manage the project
[12]. It is a managerial concept applied to all project types whatever
the industry. It that includes the following stages [2]:
1. Planning: it is about idenJfying deliverables, lisJng constraints and
dening the success criteria
2. Organizing: it is breaking down deliverables into smaller work units
while idenJfying the capacity needed to have these units done and
organizing the prioriJes and the communicaJon threads.
3. Stang: once the capacity aUributes required to implement the
project are idenJed in the organizaJon phase, selecJng and training
the workforce are o major concern to make sure that plans are full

5. So*ware Project Management and

So*ware Project Life Cycle (2/5)

4. Direc:ng: although youve selected the best possible resources and
trained them, you might achieve poor results or experience bad
performance. This is because of the lack of supervising the workforce
to achieve the expected results. Supervision methods has many styles
such as the moJvaJonal-based or authority-based (posiJon power)
5. Controlling: to make sure that your project is heading toward the
predened objecJves with no / slight change in Jme, scope or
budget ; developing, measuring, and evaluaJng the performance of
acJviJes should be engaged.


5. So*ware Project Management and

So*ware Project Life Cycle (3/5)
Project life cycle is what to do to get the work done [12]. It is industry
oriented. A project life cycle is a series of acJviJes associated with
each so#ware project management funcJon:

1. Planning Ac:vi:es: Sekng objecJves and goals; Developing
strategies; ConducJng risk assessment; Sekng procedures and rules;
Developing project plans; Preparing budgets ; etc.

2. Organizing Ac:vi:es: IdenJfying project acJviJes; SelecJng
organizaJonal structures; Dening responsibiliJes; etc.

3. Stang Ac:vi:es: Training, EvaluaJng and appraising personnel;
CompensaJon; TerminaJng assignments

5. So*ware Project Management and

So*ware Project Life Cycle (4/5)

4. Direc:ng Ac:vi:es: Supervising personnel; DelegaJng authority;
MoJvaJng personnel; Building teams; CoordinaJng acJviJes;
FacilitaJng communicaJon; Resolving conicts and Managing

5. Controlling Ac:vi:es: Developing standards of performance;
Establishing monitoring and reporJng systems; Measuring and
analyzing results; IniJaJng correcJve acJons; Rewarding and


5. So*ware Project Management and

So*ware Project Life Cycle (5/5)


ISO 12207 and CMMI-DEV 1.2 are both life cycles

used in the acJviJes related to managing projects.

ISO 12207 is be\er than CMMI in handling the
post deployment aspects that play an important
role in compleJng the so#ware life cycle. [3]

CMMI is be\er that ISO 12207 in managing
stakeholders and resolving the coordinaJon issues
and managing dependencies. [4]


6. So*ware Project Constraints (1/3)

Constraints are the barriers that project managers should esJmate to
avoid challenges and conicts. They could be [9]:

1. Schedule: constraints about the availability of resources, vendors'
ability to deliver, access to tesJng faciliJes, etc.

2. Budget: constraints about the cost of so#ware, hardware, user
acceptance tesJng, etc.

3. Resources: as the so#ware houses run various projects in parallel with
limited number of sources ; so ; a developer could be assigned for 2
projects. Accordingly, prioriJzing tasks is a challenge.


6. So*ware Project Constraints (2/3)

4. Technology: backward compaJbility is a huge constraint.

5. Management Style: the management style aect enormously the
delivery style. In the IT eld, the more agile management you run; the
more fruits you get from the developers. SomeJmes, the manager with
higher inuence could secure resources beUer than another manger
with less authoriJes

6. Time: customers might push aggressively to meet deadlines with no
consideraJon for the emerging challenges regarding implementaJon
and the above constraints.


6. So*ware Project Constraints (3/3)

During the project implementaJon, handling a constraint would aect
the other, consider the following examples:

o Delivering in less Jme might lead to more budget or reduce
o Going for less expensive product might lead to reducing scope or

Therefore, handling constraints should be do in a balanced way while
considering the consequences of the changes.


7. So*ware Project Success Criteria

The success criteria are o major concern to conrm the project
compleJon. The project manager could consider the project
successful in case it meets the following factors: Jme, scope and
budget ; however the client could nd this project didnt meet what
he / she expects.

Client perspec:ve (sa:sfac:on) [9]
The Sydney Opera House went over planned budget and Jme,
however , the Australians consider it an icon.

Project Manager perspec:ve (mee:ng :me, cost, and scope ) [9]
The Millennium Dome in London was completed on Jme and budget
but the project didnt meet the high expectaJons of the BriJsh.

8. Classica:on of the So*ware Project Managers

1. Program Manager [15]
If the so#ware project is are part of larger projects (e.g.
accounJng systems or aircra# system). The person in charge for
managing these related projects is enJtled to be the program

2. Project Manager [15]
If the so#ware to be delivered is a stand-alone that wouldnt be
plugged in a bigger project, the person in charge for handling
such project is enJtled to the project manager.

3. Acquisi:on Manager [15]
This manager manages the process of contractually obtaining
from a supplier a so#ware-intensive system for use by another
groups or organizaJon