#1. Imagine that you are a senior manager of a functional area in which a mission-critical system is being developed.
How can you safeguard this project from mushrooming out of control? [If you have seen this in an enterprise which you are familiar with, how were the issues addressed?]A mission-critical software project requires operational resiliency. It has to have zero downtime, an acceptable quality of service even when thousands of simultaneous multiple transactions are being completed, and a sustainable data handling system that prevents transaction data loss. To ensure operational resiliency, these should be well managed: a) scope of work/ project coverage; b) seamless integration of the functional area with the enterprise; c) software configuration and management (Pressman); d) deliverables; e) quality of service in relation to transaction volumes, bandwidth pressures, network latency, or slow queries; and most importantly, f) good stakeholder relationships.Scope of work should be clearly prioritized with regards to available resources and skill sets, and timelines. Software modules/ functions/ features should be broken down into small work packages, each with a definite timeline (Project Management Institute 10). When development starts small with the easiest and most important features, the development team gains greater confidence and learns rapidly to address the complex features later on.
Most importantly, the development team tests, debugs and stabilizes small programs easily. This ensures seamless integration of an automated functional area with the whole enterprise.In another light, software configuration and management or SCM is usually interdependent with scope management (Project Management Institute 7). New functions or additional features are likely to cause downtime in operations (Pressman) with these usual causes: a) global and local variable mismatches; b) index mismatches; c) procedural mismatches; and d) transactional data mismatches. Together with good scope management on any additional user requirements, a keen awareness on the usual causes of downtime and rigorous testing can help remedy or contain any design flaws or deficiencies.Good scope management combined with well-communicated deliverables can minimize unfulfilled expectations among stakeholders (Project Management Institute 7-8). When stakeholders are aware that certain outputs require specific inputs, project stakeholders are less likely to demand results without providing for the needed inputs.
In the same sense, quality of service (QoS) concerns are usually resolved with well-communicated inputs in terms of hardware, network, software, process, people and data considerations. When project stakeholders are willing to invest their time and resources for the acquisition of the inputs previously described, then outputs are likely to meet ideal QoS specifications.Most importantly, any senior manager should develop good stakeholder relationships through constant communication even beyond the project parameters. When problems escalate, good communications and warm personal relationships ensure that all project stakeholders have calm minds and cool, cooperative stances that enable everybody to act as a team and resolve any issues.
#2. Four approaches were discussed to evaluate system acquisition alternatives. They are: Group Consensus, Cost/Benefit Analysis, Benchmark Tests, and Point Evaluation. No one approach is always best. How would you decide which approach to use in a particular instance [and how did it affect an outcome in an enterprise which you are familiar with]?Communication is key hence a group consensus among software staff and operational staff is necessary to choose the top three alternatives. Afterwards, the team will conduct a cost/benefit analysis.
Next, benchmark tests will validate the marketing claims of each system. Finally, the team needs to hold a point evaluation to determine the best choice after considering the benchmark results with the outcome of the cost/benefit analysis. For instance, historians attribute the US victory in World War II to a similar method of evaluation in the case of the atom bomb versus house-to-house fighting in Japan.
Thus, it is likely that US Military enterprise software systems are chosen via the same method.#3. What is the goal of conducting a system review? What factors need to be considered during a system review [and how would it affect future projects in an enterprise which you are familiar with]?The goal is quality (O’Neill). The factors are: a) specifications and design; b) development; and c) test (O’Neill). A good system review is likely to result in more stable SCM with minimal downtime.Works CitedO’Neill, Don. “Quality: Peer Reviews.
” Encyclopedia of Software Engineering. 2000. 1 August 2007.
html>.Pressman, Roger S. “Software Configuration and Management.” Software Engineering Resources.
R. S. Pressman & Associates, Inc. 2001-2006. 1 August 2007. <