An Analysis Of The Recommended Knowledge For The Software Project Management Discipline

Araujo, Jonathan (2014). An Analysis Of The Recommended Knowledge For The Software Project Management Discipline. Thesis (Master thesis), Facultad de Informática (UPM).


Title: An Analysis Of The Recommended Knowledge For The Software Project Management Discipline
  • Araujo, Jonathan
  • Moreno, Ana Maria
Item Type: Thesis (Master thesis)
Masters title: Ingeniería del Software
Date: June 2014
Faculty: Facultad de Informática (UPM)
Department: Lenguajes y Sistemas Informáticos e Ingeniería del Software
Creative Commons Licenses: None

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According to the PMBOK (Project Management Body of Knowledge), project management is “the application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques to project activities to meet the project requirements” [1]. Project Management has proven to be one of the most important disciplines at the moment of determining the success of any project [2][3][4]. Given that many of the activities covered by this discipline can be said that are “horizontal” for any kind of domain, the importance of acknowledge the concepts and practices becomes even more obvious. The specific case of the projects that fall in the domain of Software Engineering are not the exception about the great influence of Project Management for their success.
The critical role that this discipline plays in the industry has come to numbers. A report by McKinsey & Co [4] shows that the establishment of programs for the teaching of critical skills of project management can improve the performance of the project in time and costs. As an example of the above, the reports exposes: “One defense organization used these programs to train several waves of project managers and leaders who together administered a portfolio of more than 1,000 capital projects ranging in Project management size from $100,000 to $500 million. Managers who successfully completed the training were able to cut costs on most projects by between 20 and 35 percent. Over time, the organization expects savings of about 15 percent of its entire baseline spending”.
In a white paper by the PMI (Project Management Institute) about the value of project management [5], it is stated that: “Leading organizations across sectors and geographic borders have been steadily embracing project management as a way to control spending and improve project results”. According to the research made by the PMI for the paper, after the economical crisis “Executives discovered that adhering to project management methods and strategies reduced risks, cut costs and improved success rates—all vital to surviving the economic crisis”. In every elite company, a proper execution of the project management discipline has become a must.
Several members of the software industry have putted effort into achieving ways of assuring high quality results from projects; many standards, best practices, methodologies and other resources have been produced by experts from different fields of expertise. In the industry and the academic community, there is a continuous research on how to teach better software engineering together with project management [4][6].
For the general practices of Project Management the PMI produced a guide of the required knowledge that any project manager should have in their toolbox to lead any kind of project, this guide is called the PMBOK. On the side of best practices
and required knowledge for the Software Engineering discipline, the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) developed the SWEBOK (Software Engineering Body of Knowledge) in collaboration with software industry experts and academic researchers, introducing into the guide many of the needed knowledge for a 5-year expertise software engineer [7]. The SWEBOK also covers management from the perspective of a software project.
This thesis is developed to provide guidance to practitioners and members of the academic community about project management applied to software engineering.
The way used in this thesis to get useful information for practitioners is to take an industry-approved guide for software engineering professionals such as the SWEBOK, and compare the content to what is found in the PMBOK. After comparing the contents of the SWEBOK and the PMBOK, what is found missing in the SWEBOK is used to give recommendations on how to enrich project management skills for a software engineering professional.
Recommendations for members of the academic community on the other hand, are given taking into account the GSwE2009 (Graduated Software Engineering 2009) standard [8]. GSwE2009 is often used as a main reference for software engineering master programs [9]. The standard is mostly based on the content of the SWEBOK, plus some contents that are considered to reinforce the education of software engineering. Given the similarities between the SWEBOK and the GSwE2009, the results of comparing SWEBOK and PMBOK are also considered valid to enrich what the GSwE2009 proposes. So in the end the recommendations for practitioners end up being also useful for the academic community and their strategies to teach project management in the context of software engineering.

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Item ID: 32927
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Deposited by: Mr J Araujo
Deposited on: 01 Dec 2014 08:18
Last Modified: 03 Dec 2015 16:07
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