Negin Asghari , pp. 54. COM/School of Computing, 2012.
Context. Most organizations are aware of the significance of software measurement programs to help
organizations assess and improve the ways they develop software. Measurement plays a vital role in
improving software process and products. However, the number of failing measurement programs is
high and the reasons are vary. A recent approach for planning measurement programs is
GQM+Strategies, which makes an important extension to existing approaches, it links measurements
and improvement activities to strategic goals and ways to achieve this goals. However, concrete
guides of how to collect the information needed to use GQM+strategies is not provided in the
Objectives. The contribution of this research is to propose and assess an elicitation approach (The
Goal Strategy Elicitation (GSE) approach) for the information needed to apply GQM+strategies in an
organization, which also leads to a partial evaluation of GQM+strategies as such. In this thesis, the
initial focus is placed on eliciting the goals and strategies in the most efficient way.
Methods. The primary research approach used is action research, which allows to flexibly assess a
new method or technique in an iterative manner, where the feedback of one iteration is taken into the
next iteration, thus improving on the method or technique proposed. Complementary to that, we used
literature review with the primary focus to position the work, explore GQM+strategies, and to
determine which elicitation approach for the support of measurement programs have been proposed.
Results. The Goal Strategy Elicitation (GSE) approach as a tool for eliciting goals and strategies
within the software organization to contribute in planning a measurement program has been
developed. The iterations showed that the approach of elicitation may not be too structured (e.g.
template/notation based), but rather shall support the stakeholders to express their thoughts relatively
freely. Hence, the end-result was an interview guide, not based on notations (as in the first iteration),
and asking questions in a way that the interviewees are able to express themselves easily without
having to e.g. distinguish definitions for goals and strategies.
Conclusions. We conclude that the GSE approach is a strong tool for the software organization to be
able to elicit the goals and strategies to support GQM+Strategies. GSE approach evolved in each
iteration and the latest iteration together with the guideline is still used within the studied company for
eliciting goals and strategies, and the organization acknowledged that they will continue to do so.
Moreover, we conclude that there is a need for further empirical validation of the GSE approach in
further full-scale industry trials.