An Oracle blog about Unified Method

Build Up Or Tailor Down?

Guest Author

OUM is intended to be highly scalable. In our industry today we hear lots of buzzwords around Agile or Agility. We see many methods in today’s marketplace that have adopted an agile approach to software development. The Global Methods team is in strong agreement with the tenets put forth in the “Manifesto for Agile Software Development.” We also see a debate in our industry about agility versus discipline which has been well framed in the book “Balancing Agility and Discipline: A Guide for the Perplexed” by Barry Boehm and Richard Turner.

To help OUM’s users determine just how much of OUM they should employ on a given project, we have adopted many of the philosophies and conclusions put forth in the book. It has helped to guide us in developing OUM and also in developing the guidance related to using OUM. By Boehm and Turner’s definition, at its highest level, OUM is a plan-driven method, which could be tailored down by an expert, to fit a particular situation. However, as the book points out, non experts tend to play it safe under these circumstances, and often tend to use to much or all of a method “at considerable unnecessary expense.”

Therefore, we’ve taken the advice of Boehm and Turner and adopted the philosophy of “Build it Up – Don’t Tailor it Down.” OUM’s Implement Core Workflow, along with OUM’s diverse set of views, are intended to support this philosophy.

In addition to the workflow and views, we advise you to follow 4 steps when considering the tasks to include in your OUM based workplan.

The first step is to start from a core set of tasks. We recommend that you consider using the OUM Implement Core Workflow for this purpose along with an OUM view that best matches the needs of your project. Remember, though, that the views tend to be a superset of tasks related to a particular solution, discipline, or technology. Therefore, the core workflow and views should be used together to achieve the right balance for your project.

Further information on tailoring OUM can be found in this White Paper: http://my.oracle.com/content/native/cnt723708

An external version of this White Paper will be published early in 2012 along with recorded training for Oracle Consulting, along with our Partner and Customer community. 

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