Using Grounded Theory to Acquire Knowledge About Critical Success Factors for Conducting Software Process Improvement Implementation Initiatives

Using Grounded Theory to Acquire Knowledge About Critical Success Factors for Conducting Software Process Improvement Implementation Initiatives

Mariano Angel Montoni (ProMove – Business Intelligence Solutions, Brazil) and Ana Regina Cavalcanti da Rocha (Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Copyright: © 2011 |Pages: 18
DOI: 10.4018/jkm.2011070104
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Abstract

The successful implementation of Software Process Improvement (SPI) depends not only on the abilities of practitioners to identify processes modifications that may help to increase organizations capabilities to develop software, but also abilities to overcome barriers that can jeopardize the organizational change process provoked by SPI initiatives. The literature reports show that SPI practitioners must have experienced skills to overcome common social-cultural factors that pose as critical barriers for successfully implementing SPI. Nevertheless, there is no consensus in the area about what the critical success factors are for conducting SPI implementation initiatives. This work presents a study based on Grounded Theory methodology to acquire knowledge about SPI critical success factors. The main product of this study is a theoretical knowledge framework consisting of a set of inter-related categories grounded on a set of propositions that explains the phenomenon associated to the success of SPI implementation initiatives.
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2. Using Grounded Theory In Qualitative Studies

Ground Theory methodology was originally designed to guide investigations in the social sciences area. Nevertheless, it has also been used to support researchers to understand behavioral issues concerning organizational changes promoted by Information Systems implementation. One interesting study describing the application of grounded theory approach to investigate the critical success factors of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) implementation is presented by Nasirin, Birks, and Jones (2003). The results of this study demonstrate the benefits of applying grounded theory approach in qualitative studies conducted to understand the critical success factors and the implementation strategies to effectively introduce organizational changes.

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