The Era of People Re-engineering - Page 2


Development Complexity Time Line

So, it’s complexity in managing the software process that is challenging our success in the software development business, hence the crisis or, in the least, the challenge.

Look at the slide above, tracing how this process management complexity evolved across time. The starting point is the nascence of web technologies (complexity was not zero before it of course but we shall start above what was there anyways, which was really trivial in comparison), where applications started to move to the web, with a lot of pressures on developers coming from new technologies, new class of requirements, new pace and time scales for production as well as new operational threats. You can see that complexity is going up from the start till say approx 2K (Year 2000) on the timeline. In this era, as well as net-enabling usual business applications, new e-anything business was born, to mark the impact of how we develop applications not only on the way we do business, but also on the way we live.

Under pressures of the new paradigms, this segment in time (start – 2K) witnessed a difficulty in controlling our {Q, P, S} vector: denoting {Quality, Productivity and Stability}, which called for revisiting and revamping two things, that represent two sub-intervals:

  • S.E techniques, things like SDLC, waterfall and Structured Programming,  to recover our {Q,P,S}, at least in its Q, P elements! This didn’t work fine as such, as it was too much predictive in an era where non-predictiveness started to take the leading role. Still we felt the need to proceed to some more penetrating solutions.
  • Then came a time where our attention went to the process and we hired the TQM process management techniques to produce things like ISO variants, CMMI and Probably PSP and maybe more, that were deemed to enhance our QPS results. There were some improvements, represented by a less steeper segment after transition from S.E to BPE years. But complexity went on thirsty for more to do.

In spite of that, our industry still enjoyed the highest rate of turnover represented by S in QPS vector, with that low rate of full success of its projects in comparison to well-established industries.

To complicate things further, the application market was dashing faster towards a new class of applications that serves the emerging Knowledge Economy Era, whereby the application itself could be the business, just recall things like a booming game, mobile app or service.

In the same time, and immediately before and crossing 2K barrier, there started to be some awareness for more need to turn the focus to people, those who do it all. Techniques to reduce their stresses and redirect their energies positively were devised by great minds in technology. Ahead of all came Agile Movement and Object Oriented Development Methodology (starting earlier of course) which targets reuse as a main virtue that saves any development team a hell of hours spent in re-inventing the wheel.

In my thinking, as a close observer to development arena, we came today to a point where the importance of people has climbed to a point where they must receive a continued attention to keep them not only technically competent, but (and above that) resilient and motivated to meet the challenges in elevating that QPS of the development organization. This effort is what I here call People Re-engineering.

So, Let's Define IT!

It’s a process that goes in tandem with the main production process of the organization, through which people’s behavior is consciously and transparently  monitored for improvement, with the purpose of encouraging positive initiatives, spotting negative attitudes and fixing them with the right actions.

The fact that is never to drop is that conscious and closely attached  leadership is the key player in implementing that.