Aftab Ahmad Mughal; Muhammad Nadeem MSE-2009:30, pp. 158. COM/School of Computing, 2009.
Software organizations have been initiating measurement programs as part of their software process improvement practices which in turn increase the quality of the software products. However, high numbers of organizations reported their measurement programs as failures. One of the major difficulties they faced was stated to be the difficulty in deciding which set of measures to collect for different software entities; products, processes, and resources. In addition to what should be collected, organizations would like to collect as minimum number of measures as possible in order to be cost effective. Different goal based measures selection models have been introduced to aid in these, namely Goal Question Metric (GQM) is one of the most well known and adopted ones by software organizations. It facilitates measurement programs to define goals and then collect measures according to goals. However, the current approaches require being more structured and integrated to enable an effective software measurement process. ‘Structured’ means the goals, questions and measures as well as their vertical and horizontal relations are well-defined. A structured measurement process can be ‘integrated’ to the organization via establishing links between business and organizational goals and the measurement process. The whole process becomes more ‘effective’ as these goals and measures become traceable, and hence the mechanisms to prioritize and select the optimum set of measures could be established.
In this research work our main focus is to evaluate goal based models and to develop a framework for a more effective measurement process, called Structured Optimized Measurement Selection (SOMS). As part of SOMS, alternative ways for goals prioritization and measures optimization are proposed. In order to make the whole process more efficient, a tool is developed as well. Both SOMS with different alternative prioritization and optimization techniques as well as the tool were evaluated by conducting case studies in a CMMI level 3 software development organization and the results are compared to a previous case study conducted on the same case by using other techniques which are extensions of GQM, i.e. namely Structured Prioritized Goals Questions Metrics (SPGQM) and Optimum Measures Set Decision (OMSD).