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Article

Subhas Misra, Vinod Kumar, Uma Kumar, Kamel Fantazy and Mahmud Akhter

Agile software development is an emerging approach in software engineering, initially proposed and promoted by a group of 17 software professionals who practice a set of…

Abstract

Purpose

Agile software development is an emerging approach in software engineering, initially proposed and promoted by a group of 17 software professionals who practice a set of “lightweight” methods, and share a common set of values of software development. They consolidated their thoughts, and defined these methods as “agile”. The approaches are based on experiences and best practices from the past by the above‐mentioned group of 17 software professionals. The purpose of this article is to outline the history and evolution of agile software development practices, their principles, and the criticisms as reported by the software development community.

Design/methodology/approach

A comprehensive literature review was undertaken to do this research.

Findings

Based on the literature review, this paper provides a comprehensive document that helps the practitioners working in the area of the agile software development.

Originality/value

This article will provide comprehensive material for the researchers in the area of agile software development. It will also be very useful for the practitioners practicing software development in the area of agile software development.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 29 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

Keywords

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Article

Shivam Gupta, Sameer Kumar, Shampy Kamboj, Bharat Bhushan and Zongwei Luo

This paper aims to examine the link between information systems (IS) agility, HR performance management systems and job satisfaction using organizational information…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the link between information systems (IS) agility, HR performance management systems and job satisfaction using organizational information processing theory. The objective of this study answers the following questions: How does use of different IS agility impact HR systems and job satisfaction? What are the connecting pathways by which IS agility affects HR systems and job satisfaction?

Design/methodology/approach

The authors developed a theoretical framework based on the organizational information processing theory and collected primary data through an online-based questionnaire. Following these procedures, the authors analyzed the data using structural equation modeling (SEM).

Findings

SEM analysis of the data from 150 respondents supports the organizational information processing theory. The authors proposed eight hypotheses, and only one was rejected.

Research limitations/implications

The data were collected from South Africa only, which is an emerging economy, and these cross-sectional data were gathered from the perspectives of the respondents.

Originality/value

The present paper empirically tests the conceptual model through the lens of organizational information processing theory.

Details

Journal of Knowledge Management, vol. 23 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1367-3270

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Article

Usman K. Durrani, Zijad Pita and Joan Richardson

The purpose of this paper is to present the findings of Phase 1 of the research and to identify Australian agile software development organizations having such coexistence…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present the findings of Phase 1 of the research and to identify Australian agile software development organizations having such coexistence of agile and software configuration management (SCM) practices. This study employed “organization size” variable to study the phenomenon and used theory of Lean Thinking as a lens to analyse implementation variations of agile and SCM practices.

Design/methodology/approach

For this study, the research design was comprised of three phases. In Phase 1, a quantitative study using an online survey was performed to answer RQ using various statistical techniques. In Phase 2, an initial conceptual model based on a literature review was developed, and then a qualitative study was performed using one longitudinal case study. In Phase 3, another online survey was performed using various parametric statistical techniques to validate and generalize the findings of Phase 1 and 2 and the proposed SLAM traceability model. The scope of this paper is to discuss only Phase 1 and its associated findings.

Findings

The results of the analysis indicated that organizations, regardless of their size, frequently use agile practices for their software development operations. On the other hand, larger organizations use SCM practices comparatively more than medium and small organizations. However, traces of customized SCM process were found in most of the respondent (large, medium, and small) organizations, which indicates the coexistence of agile and SCM practices.

Research limitations/implications

As there is no known listing or database available for such specialized criteria, a non-probabilistic sampling method was used, in the sense that the selection of members of the sample was arbitrary and subjective instead of a non-random selection from the pool of all agile practitioners in the field.

Originality/value

By using the quantitative method approach, this study aims to generate empirical evidence to contribute to the body of knowledge in the relevant areas. On the practical side, this research can also provide support to IT businesses in general, and software development organizations in particular, with the streamlining of the internal operational environment for the facilitation of an adaptable process and the resulting coexistence of value-added agile and SCM practices.

Details

Journal of Systems and Information Technology, vol. 16 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1328-7265

Keywords

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Article

Arthur Ahimbisibwe, Urs Daellenbach and Robert Y. Cavana

Aligning the project management methodology (PMM) to a particular project is considered to be essential for project success. Many outsourced software projects fail to…

Abstract

Purpose

Aligning the project management methodology (PMM) to a particular project is considered to be essential for project success. Many outsourced software projects fail to deliver on time, budget or do not give value to the client due to inappropriate choice of a PMM. Despite the increasing range of available choices, project managers frequently fail to seriously consider their alternatives. They tend to narrowly tailor project categorization systems and categorization criterion is often not logically linked with project objectives. The purpose of this paper is to develop and test a contingency fit model comparing the differences between critical success factors (CSFs) for outsourced software development projects in the current context of traditional plan-based and agile methodologies.

Design/methodology/approach

A theoretical model and 54 hypotheses were developed from a literature review. An online Qualtrics survey was used to collect data to test the proposed model. The survey was administered to a large sample of senior software project managers and practitioners who were involved in international outsourced software development projects across the globe with 984 valid responses.

Findings

Results indicate that various CSFs differ significantly across agile and traditional plan-based methodologies, and in different ways for various project success measures.

Research limitations/implications

This study is cross-sectional in nature and data for all variables were obtained from the same sources, meaning that common method bias remains a potential threat. Further refinement of the instrument using different sources of data for variables and future replication using longitudinal approach is highly recommended.

Practical implications

Practical implications of these results suggest project managers should tailor PMMs according to various organizational, team, customer and project factors to reduce project failure rates.

Originality/value

Unlike previous studies this paper develops and empirically validates a contingency fit model comparing the differences between CSFs for outsourced software development projects in the context of PMMs.

Details

Journal of Enterprise Information Management, vol. 30 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0398

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Article

Arthur Ahimbisibwe, Robert Y Cavana and Urs Daellenbach

While the choices available for project management methodologies have increased significantly, questions remain on whether project managers fully consider their…

Abstract

Purpose

While the choices available for project management methodologies have increased significantly, questions remain on whether project managers fully consider their alternatives. When project categorization systems and criteria are not logically matched with project objectives, characteristics and environment, this may provide the key reason for why many software projects are reported to fail to deliver on time, budget or do not give value to the client. The purpose of this paper is to identify and categorize critical success factors (CSFs) and develop a contingency fit model contrasting perspectives of traditional plan-based and agile methodologies.

Design/methodology/approach

By systematically reviewing the previous literature, a total of 37 CSFs for software development projects are identified from 148 articles, and then categorized into three major CSFs: organizational, team and customer factors. A contingency fit model augments this by highlighting the necessity to match project characteristics and project management methodology to these CSFs.

Findings

Within the three major categories of CSFs, individual factors are ranked based on how frequently they have been cited in previous studies, overall as well as across the two main project management methodologies (traditional, agile). Differences in these rankings as well as mixed empirical support suggest that previous research may not have adequately theorized when particular CSFs will affect project success and lend support for the hypothesized contingency model between CSFs, project characteristics and project success criteria.

Research limitations/implications

This research is conceptual and meta-analytic in its focus. A crucial task for future research should be to test the contingency fit model developed using empirical data. There is no broad consensus among researchers and practitioners in categorizing CSFs for software development projects. However, through an extensive search and analysis of the literature on CSFs for software development projects, the research provides greater clarity on the categories of CSFs and how their direct, indirect and moderated effects on project success can be modelled.

Practical implications

This study proposes a contingency fit model and contributes towards developing a theory for assessing the role of CSFs for project success. While future empirical testing of this conceptual model is essential, it provides an initial step for guiding quantitative data collection, specifies detailed empirical analysis for comparative studies, and is likely to improve clarity in debate. Since previous studies have not rigorously assessed the impact of fit between project characteristics, project environment and project management methodology on project success, additional empirically robust studies will help to clarify contradictory findings that have limited theory development for CSFs of software development projects to date.

Originality/value

Previous research for software development projects has frequently not fully incorporated contingency as moderation or contingency as fit (traditional vs agile). This research sets out to develop fully a contingency fit perspective on software development project success, through contrasting traditional plan-driven and agile methodologies. To do this, the paper systematically identifies and ranks 37 CSFs for software projects from 148 journal publications and holistically categorizes them as organizational, team, customer and project factors.

Details

Journal of Enterprise Information Management, vol. 28 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0398

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Article

Subhas Chandra Misra, Vinod Kumar and Uma Kumar

Agile software development (ASD) is currently an emerging approach in software engineering for improving quality, initially advocated by a group of 17 software

Abstract

Purpose

Agile software development (ASD) is currently an emerging approach in software engineering for improving quality, initially advocated by a group of 17 software professionals who practice a set of “lightweight” methods, and share a common set of values of software development. Owing to the attractive claims of successes of the ASD approach, many traditional projects, which used to practice plan‐driven software development, are gradually transitioning into ASD‐based development. This paper seeks to report the results from a survey‐based ex‐post‐facto study aimed at determining the relative importance, if any, of the changes traditional plan‐driven software development projects have to undergo to adopt ASD practices.

Design/methodology/approach

The study was conducted using a web‐based survey with ASD practitioners who had experience of practicing plan‐driven software development in the past. ASD practitioners from a wide range of industrial sectors participated in the study. Similarly, the study is not restricted to any specific organisation/project size, culture, or nationality – the respondents were widely geographically distributed across continents.

Findings

The study received 241 responses, of which 165 were usable. The study did not reveal any substantial difference in importance of the four classes of changes hypothesised – changes in culture, changes in management style, changes in knowledge management strategy and changes in development processes. The authors believe that this is an important finding because it is indicative of not isolating one class of changes from another in practical transition exercises. However, another noteworthy observation was that transitioning from heavily process‐centric to short, iterative, test‐driven, and people‐centric development was considered by the largest percentage (roughly 77 per cent) of respondents to be very important. The open‐ended questions in the study also revealed three additional classes of changes: changes in personal characteristics, changes in customer attitude, and changes in knowledge and education of stakeholders.

Originality/value

In this work an attempt was made to gain an understanding of the relative importance of the different critical changes that would be helpful to a project manager who is involved in the transition from traditional plan‐driven software development practices to agile software development practices.

Details

International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, vol. 27 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-671X

Keywords

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Article

Karlheinz Kautz

This paper aims to explore a case of customer and user participation in an agile software development project, which produced a tailor‐made information system for…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore a case of customer and user participation in an agile software development project, which produced a tailor‐made information system for workplace support as a step towards a theory of participatory design in agile software development.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on an integrated framework for user participation derived from the participatory design literature the research was performed as a case study and semi‐structured, open‐ended interviews were conducted with about a third of the development team and with a representative sample of key players and future users in the customer organization. The interview data were supplemented with company and project documents.

Findings

The paper found genuine customer and user participation carried out by onsite customers and by other operational staff in the form of direct and indirect participation and with functional and democratic empowerment. The onsite customers played informative, consultative and participative roles. The analysis revealed that planning games, user stories and story cards, working software and acceptance tests structured the customer and user participation. This form of user participation supported a balance between flexibility and project progress and resulted in a project and a product which were considered a success by the customer and the development organization. The analysis showed that the integrative framework for user participation can also fruitfully be used in a new context to understand what participatory design is and how, when and where it can be performed as an instance of a design process in agile development. As such the paper contributes to an analytical and a design theory of participatory design in agile development. Furthermore the paper explicates why participatory design contributes to the successful completion of the investigated project. By drawing on innovation theory it was found that participatory design in agile development bears the characteristics of a successful organizational innovation. Grounding further explanations in complex adaptive systems theory the paper provides an additional argument why participatory design despite some identified challenges fosters project staff to successfully carry out the agile development project.

Originality/value

The paper presents an exploratory, empirical study of an understudied phenomenon and contributes to theory building.

Content available
Article

Kati Tuulikki Stormi, Teemu Laine and Tuomas Korhonen

The purpose of this study is to reflect upon the feasibility of agile methodologies, Scrum in particular, to supplement the procedural design and implementation of…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to reflect upon the feasibility of agile methodologies, Scrum in particular, to supplement the procedural design and implementation of performance measurement systems (PMS).

Design/methodology/approach

The study is an interventionist case study that applied agile methodologies in the PMS development. Researchers actively participated in the PMS development, e.g. researchers designed some of the performance measurement prototypes in order to facilitate the agile development.

Findings

The study outlines an agile approach suitable for PMS development. The paper answers the topical needs for adaptability and agility in management accounting, by applying agile methodologies into PMS development. PMS development does not take place only as a project or process that systematically progresses from the measure selection to measure implementation. Instead, as the requirements for the PMS change during the development project, management may reject some measures and new measures emerge as the understanding about changing situations increase. Agile methodologies are a methodological way to respond to the inevitable change and to enhance management accounting adaptability.

Research limitations/implications

This study contributes to the PMS literature by proposing that agile development methodologies can advance organizational features that increase management accounting adaptability. As a result, the study proposes a new approach for PMS development to supplement existing ones. Agile methodologies are especially suitable for extending the PMS in new, yet relatively immature areas of performance measurement. The new approach applies Scrum principles in PMS development. By drawing from the theories of performance measurement (system) development and enabling PMS, the paper furthers academic understanding about agile development of accounting information systems.

Practical implications

Companies can use the proposed approach in PMS development, particularly after the initial system implementation in redesigning the system. The approach may increase the PMS impact in organizations and prevent PMS implementation failures.

Originality/value

The paper identifies the potential of using agile methodologies to enhance PMS adaptability and provides preliminary evidence of the potential of such approach in supplementing processual PMS development frameworks.

Details

Journal of Accounting & Organizational Change, vol. 15 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1832-5912

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Article

May Chang

This paper seeks to describe the application of the Agile software development approach to rapidly develop and deploy a variety of innovative IT applications.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to describe the application of the Agile software development approach to rapidly develop and deploy a variety of innovative IT applications.

Design/methodology/approach

The Agile approach is flexible and iterative with continuous feedback and constant communication. It is also marked by frequent and short delivery schedules. An Agile team of staff and students was formed for different projects, and visual tools were used to show process and progress. Team members were also co‐located (situated in the same space), a key element that allowed faster and direct communication. Within the Agile framework, the Crystal Clear methodology was selected, which is based on team size and criticality of the application to develop the workflow and iterative processes.

Findings

The Agile approach is particularly suited to innovation development and creative teams for rapid development of products, services, and technology. However, its acceptance is dependent on organizational culture and nature of application.

Research limitations/implications

As a next step, it would be useful to test the Agile approach in an innovative application that is on a larger scale than six team members and with a different level of criticality.

Practical implications

Flexibility and adaptability are needed in managing the development of IT innovations and applications as they vary in size and complexity. The flexible and iterative Agile approach provided the framework to develop and implement these projects despite the small staff size.

Originality/value

There is little in the professional literature on software development and project management approaches for small teams. The Agile approach would be of interest to an IT unit or library with limited staff resources and interested in a lightweight framework to develop and deploy innovative projects.

Details

Library Hi Tech, vol. 28 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0737-8831

Keywords

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Article

Inger Anne Tøndel, Martin Gilje Jaatun, Daniela Soares Cruzes and Laurie Williams

Today, agile software development teams in general do not adopt security risk-assessment practices in an ongoing manner to prioritize security work. Protection Poker is a…

Abstract

Purpose

Today, agile software development teams in general do not adopt security risk-assessment practices in an ongoing manner to prioritize security work. Protection Poker is a collaborative and lightweight software security risk-estimation technique that is particularly suited for agile teams. Motivated by a desire to understand why security risk assessments have not yet gained widespread adoption in agile development, this study aims to assess to what extent the Protection Poker game would be accepted by agile teams and how it can be successfully integrated into the agile practices.

Design/methodology/approach

Protection Poker was studied in capstone projects, in teams doing a graduate software security course and in sessions with industry representatives. Data were collected via questionnaires, observations and group interviews.

Findings

Results show that Protection Poker has the potential to be adopted by agile teams. Key benefits include good discussions on security and the development project, along with increased knowledge and awareness. Challenges include ensuring efficient use of time and gaining impact on the end product.

Research limitations/implications

Using students allowed easy access to subjects and an ability to collect rich data over time, but at the cost of generalizability to professional settings. Results from interactions with professionals supplement the data from students, showing similarities and differences in their opinions on Protection Poker.

Originality/value

The paper proposes ways to tackle the main obstacles to the adoption of the Protection Poker technique, as identified in this study.

Details

Information & Computer Security, vol. 27 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-4961

Keywords

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