Project Management


What Metrics Can Do for You

Measuring activities are vital to the software test process. On this site, there are more than 200 items (articles, tools, templates, etc.) classified under the topic "measurement." But what good are all the bits and pieces of data that you collect? In this week's column, veteran software tester Rick Craig outlines some of the practical uses for metrics.

Rick Craig's picture Rick Craig
Venus and Mars in the Workplace

In the "Venus and Mars" series of mainstream relationship books, author John Gray attests that differences in outlook and inherited traits account for relationship problems between genders. His position is that men and women come from inherently different places and therefore approach things from inherently different perspectives. In this week's column, Carol Dekkers explores how some of the issues in software development might be similarly rooted in differences between the software development and customer communities.

Carol Dekkers
Stop Destroying My Team with Bad MBOs

It's 2003, and you're a manager casting about for a good New Year's resolution. Sure, going to the gym, quitting cigarettes, cutting down on the cheeseburgers-those are all good resolutions for you personally. But how about a resolution that helps you professionally, and will help everyone who works for you? How about resolving to stop destroying your team with bad MBOs? Find out how, in this week's column by Rex Black.

Rex Black's picture Rex Black
Computer Bribery

"There's a little something in it for you if the product is ready for testing next week." To make a date, have you ever resorted to offering or accepting such a payout? You don't often encounter the technique in management books, but we all know that people can be motivated by money. In this week's column, Sheryl Smith imagines a scenario where the equipment is "bribed" to speed delivery. Read on for the point of view from inside the computer.

Sheryl Smith
What Does Your Title Say About Your Job?

"That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet." True, sloppy naming schemes may be all right in some cases. But as Johanna Rothman explains in this column, when software professionals are looking for a job, hiring, or negotiating work assignments, it's crucial for their job titles to accurately portray the work they do. Read on to see if you agree with the definitions Johanna assigns to the more common QA-related job titles.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman
Taking the Mystery out of Requirements

Ambiguity, false assumptions, theories, and red herrings. These basic elements of a good mystery story are also encountered in software requirements gathering. And just as the detective has his bag of tricks for solving the mystery, you can learn a few things about uncovering elusive requirements in this column from Becky Winant.

Becky Winant
Keeping a Project Journal

If you think that keeping a journal is only for adolescent girls, read this week's column by Lee Copeland. Among other things, he suggests that a project journal helps you stay organized; teaches you what not to do next time; and makes it easier to explain what went wrong in a troubled project when you have to defend yourself. He also gives tips on being a good recorder.

Lee Copeland's picture Lee Copeland
What To Do When What You're Doing Isn't Working

If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. But if you keep trying the same things that worked for you in the past, and they're not working for you now, you might never succeed. In this column, Eileen Strider shows you how to tap new sources for fresh approaches to tackling problems.

Eileen Strider
The Allocation of Testing Resources

How to allocate testing resources is a difficult issue. Sometimes it is hard to justify testing in projects, especially small ones. As quality control professionals, we know that testing is essential to guarantee product quality. This article shows a new approach to the testing methodology, which is applied at the organization I work for. The new approach intends to answer some of the questions in order to ensure that testing resources are appropriately allocated in a project. The main goals are to reduce testing costs, keep the product quality high, and anticipate the delivery date.

Antonio Cardoso
Don't Just Do Something, Stand There!

Maybe you're the kind of person who attacks a problem as soon as it crops up. Many times, it's good to act fast. But for a different point of view, read this week's column by Don Gray, who advises us to "take ten" and evaluate a situation before making a response.

Don Gray's picture Don Gray


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