Monday, April 23, 2012

Software Cost Management - Resources and Bibliography

Organizations Providing Services in the Area

QSM offers a full range of tools and consulting services to help you develop achievable, accurate cost and schedule estimates. With over 20 years of experience in software estimation, coupled with sophisticated tools and a proven methodology used by Fortune 1000 organizations worldwide, we offer the knowledge and experience you need to succeed.

QSM Tools

SLIM-Estimate has been the industry leader for estimation, analysis, and presentation of software schedule, effort, and quality data since 1978. It allows you to create and evaluate an unlimited number of possible solutions. More importantly, you can leverage data from your own completed projects, as well the latest trends from QSM’s database of over 6300 completed software projects.

The power of your own history and QSM industry trends can help you:

  • Calibrate project estimates to your environment
  • Maximize the accuracy of your estimates
  • Evaluate both internal and contractor plans against past history and the latest industry benchmarks
  • Create risk-buffered plans that help you deliver on time and within budget
  • Negotiate and communicate more effectively with colleagues and customers.

EstimateExpress is QSM's software project estimation tool for organizations with smaller estimating requirements. EstimateExpress accurately calculates the cost, schedule, reliability, and resources for large and small software projects while providing the ability to negotiate and plan multiple project scenarios. Backed by QSM and our worldwide industry database of thousands of software projects, Express is a perfect choice for software development shops that don't need an enterprise solution.

Article by QSM on Software Cost Management
Article by QSM on Software Project Management

How QSM Products Support PMI Knowledge Areas A convenient matrix showing how QSM tools support different PMI Key Knowledge Areas.

Making The Right Choices For Healthy Software - By David Rubenstein.  SD Times looks at the latest QSM research into best- and worst-of-class projects to see how successful software development managers estimate, plan, and manage projects. January 2006.

SLIM and Christopher Columbus - By Ernst Van Waning.  The commercial development of software is not a process that can be done 'by the eye': the long accepted software crisis is now seen as a chronic situation facing the IT industry. Developing software is hard enough but managing software development projects is even harder to do 'by eye'. Tools are needed to show your development process as it really is: in project execution, in plans and bids and in comparison to other projects in the market. Easy to say, but what does it actually mean? August 2005.

PDF version

"Ensuring Delivery of Highly Reliable, Complex Software Releases" - By Jim Greene.  A case study from major telecom supplier demonstrates how to estimate, plan, and manage distributed subsystems that are developed separately, then integrated to form a release. Examines the challenges of delivering a distributed, high-reliability system. October 2003.

"Telecom Software Benchmarks: 10 Years Apart" - By Jim Greene.  Benchmarks taken 10 years apart measure the benefits of process improvement initiatives and the impact of increased time-to-market pressures on a major telecom supplier. September 2003.

"How Much Software Can Be Built In A Year " - By Doug Putnam.  In today’s world, customers expect to see software projects delivered in increasingly shorter cycles. The maximum time most IT customers seem willing to wait is about one year. In this fast-paced environment, the question becomes: just how much software can a typical IT shop create in 12 months? March 2002.

"What I Did Last Summer: A Software Development Benchmarking Case Study " - By James T. Heires.  This article describes a vendor-supported benchmarking study of an applications development department. The study established a quantitative performance baseline of the organization and compared it to industry trends. October 2001.

"QSM Software Research Bulletin" - By Doug Putnam.  Results of a long-term productivity study covering the period from 1982-1997 in condensed format.  November  2001.

"Software Quality Assurance (SQA) of Management Processes Using the SEI Core Measures" - By Jim Greene.  Using the right metrics for the three key management processes - benchmarking, estimation and risk analysis, and project tracking and control - to deliver a quality product.  September 19, 2001.

"Build in Quality" - By Lawrence H. Putnam Sr. and Ware Myers  Quality is the positive side of quality-defect continuum. The use of metrics is fundamental to allow sufficient time and effort to build a quality product. April 2001.

"Build it Faster!" - By Lawrence H. Putnam Sr. and Ware Myers  How can we build software faster? Specifically, how can metrics help reduce time-to-market?  April 2001.

"Productivity Statistics Buck 15-Year Trend" - By Douglas Putnam.  Examines the effects of new technologies such as ERP, object-oriented development, and Internet/e-commerce on long-term productivity trends from the QSM database.  July 2001.

"Software by the Numbers: an Aerial View of the Software Metrics Landscape" - By Michael Mah and Lawrence H. Putnam, Sr.   As we muse on what 'new metrics' apply in the ever-changing world of software, we should also be asking ourselves the more basic question, 'What will we do with metrics?' . Many organizations don't have the basics down before they pile on measure after measure.  This article originally appeared in Vol. 10, no. 11 of AMERICAN PROGRAMMER. 1998.

"Linking the QSM Productivity Index to the SEI Maturity Levels" - By Lawrence H. Putnam, Sr.   This paper explores the correlation between QSM's Process Productivity Index (PI) and SEI CMM level.  July 2000.

"Purchasing Software Intensive Systems Using Quality Targets" - By Jim Greene.  DOD process for tracking reliability against quality targets.  November 2000.

"16 Critical Software Practices For Performance-Based Management" The Airlie Software Council was formed in late 1994 under the coordination of Dr. Norm Brown of the DoD Software Program Managers Network. Its mission is "to identify best software practices in Government and Industry, and to cause these best practices to be implemented in DoD software management, development and maintenance".

"What We Have Learned" - By Lawrence H. Putnam and Ware Myers.  Lessons learned from studying the SEI core metrics and process productivity (PI).  Published in Crosstalk, April 2000.

"Without Software, No Megatrends" - By Lawrence H. Putnam and Ware Myers.  Improving software productivity is the key to supporting the megatrends of the future.

"Key Things We Have Learned" - By Lawrence H. Putnam and Ware Myers.  A retrospective view on how Larry Putnam's seminal thoughts (and one new observation) on software development have held up over the past 25 years.  February 2000.

"The Princess and the Pea" - By Lawrence H. Putnam and Ware Myers.

"A Throughput Measurement Procedure Using SLIM" - By Lawrence H. Putnam.  How to calculate and demonstrate the value of staffing and process improvement strategies using SLIM-Estimate.

"Analysis of On-Board Spacecraft Software Development" - By Jim Greene.

"Avoiding the Premature Delivery of Software" - By Jim Greene.

"Estimating Software Size and Uncertainty" - By Jim Greene.

"Estimating When You Are Moving to New Technologies" - By Doug Putnam.

"First, Get the Front End Right" - By Lawrence H. Putnam, Michael Mah, and Ware Myers.

"Getting a "RUNAWAY" Software Development Under Control: A Case Study" - By Jim Greene.

"Home Runs in Management Science" - By Doug Putnam.

"Implementation of a Software Project Office at Honeywell Air Transport Systems" - By Mike Ross.

"Independent Research on Software Reuse" - By Mike Mah and Ira Grossman.

"Larry Putnam's Career in Software Estimation" - By Larry Putnam, Sr.

"Managing Major Distributed Software Development" - By Jim Greene.

"Measures For Software Acquisition" - By Jim Greene.

"Product Review -- SLIM-Metrics®: A Powerful New Repository and Analysis Tool" - By James T. Heires, Rockwell Collins, Inc. See also ADT Magazine, June 1998 issue.

"QSM Reliability Model." - By Doug Putnam.

"Size Does Matter: Continuous Size Estimating and Tracking" - By Mike Ross.

"Sizing and Controlling Incremental Development" - By Jim Greene.

"SLIM Historical Data Form"

"SLIM Sizing and Estimation Input Form"

"Software Process Improvement: Management, Commitment, Measures, and Motivation" - By Jim Greene.

"The (Almost) Perfect Software Project Using the SEI Core Measures" - By Jim Greene.



Risk Management Series (HTML)

As an ongoing feature of this web site, QSM consultants write articles on Risk Management. In the interest of supporting the software development industry, QSM offers these valuable documents at no charge. They are directly available as HTML files for viewing and printing.

"Haste Makes Waste When You Over-Staff to Achieve Schedule Compression" - By Doug Putnam.

"Simple Project Tracking Approach Puts You in Control of Your Project" - By Doug Putnam.

Process Improvement Series (HTML)

As an ongoing feature of this web site, QSM consultants write articles on Process Improvement. In the interest of supporting the software development industry, QSM offers these valuable documents at no charge. They are directly available as HTML files for viewing and printing.

"You Need the Right Map to Know Where You're Going With Process Improvement" - By Doug Putnam.

"Team Size Can Be the Key to a Successful Project" - By Doug Putnam.

Familiar Metric Management Series (PDF)

This section contains a series of articles written by Larry Putnam, Sr. and Ware Myers for Cutter Consortium's IT Metrics Strategies, formerly edited by Howard Rubin and now edited by Michael Mah. In the interest of supporting the software development industry, QSM offers these documents at no charge. They are available as PDF files for viewing and downloading with the Adobe Acrobat® Reader. Click on the title to download the article.

(32) Effort, Development Time, and Defects Interact

(31) Get Yourself a Little Whip!

(30) Multiple Uses of Software Metrics

(29) Year 2000 Turns the Mythical Man-Month on its Head

(28) Small is Beautiful-Once Again

(27) QSM Database Shows Drop in Productivity

(26) Management Vision Precedes Metrics

(25) "Let Me Count the Ways"

(24) Experience the Wisdom That Goes With Knowing Where You've Been

(23) Know What You Have to Do

(22) Leonardo da Vinci Knew Feasibility

(21) Come to dinner, Henry!

(20) From Work to the Bit-Stream

(19) "The software cost estimation problem is solved!"

(18) What Will the Year 2000 Fix Cost Me?

(17) Productivity of the Reuse Organization

(16) Software Reuse

(15) The Future of Metrics in Software Development

(14) Produce More Systems

(13) The Effort-Time Tradeoff: It's In The Data

(12) The Power of the Tradeoff

(11) Negotiate from a Fact-Based Position

(10) Evaluating a Technology

(9) Fads

(8) Time-to-Market

(7) Executive Backing

(6) Software Adds Business Value

(5) Time Boxing

(4) Size

(3) Reliability

(2) Familiar Metric Management +

(1) Familiar Metric Management



Books and Book Chapters


Chapter 7. Project Cost Management

in Information Technology Project Management, 4th Edition

Kathy Schwalbe - Augsburg College

Cengage Learning, 2006.


          Articles and Research Papers

          Software Cost Estimating Methods for Large Projects©
          Capers Jones , Software Productivity Research, LLC


             Assessing the economic value of software projects, Pub Nov. 2005

          Patrick McKenna, Senior Technical Advisor, IBM


              Basic COCOMO  Cost Estimating Web Site


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Original knol - number 571

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