Formalizing a Software Development Process
Few topics stimulate the troops and drive such rousing conversation around the office watercooler as software development process discussions. I decided to address this topic in my first blog post, not for the cheap emotional thrills, but more as a foundation to lead into future posts on product design methodology.
After having spent about a year-and-a-half with the web team at DIRECTV Latin America, I started to notice that different projects were being managed and developed in different ways, with no standardized process used across teams. In some organizations this might not be a problem, but in our case, many of our resources were shared between teams, and the different processes were causing confusion and frustration. To make matters worse, there were a few examples in which important steps were being skipped accidentally and products were being released with issues. For example, business owners would ask how a recently launched site was performing, but since a web analyst had not been involved in the project, the correct tracking tags had not been included and important goals were not being tracked. That type of thing.
After a couple such incidents, I decided to try and standardize a development process that could be agreed-upon and used by all teams. I created the above diagram to help formalize and communicate the new process.