SPI Long-Term Benefits: Case Studies of Five Small Firms

SPI Long-Term Benefits: Case Studies of Five Small Firms

Aileen Cater-Steel (University of Southern Queensland, Australia) and Terry Rout (Griffith University, Australia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-906-9.ch012

Abstract

The contribution of small enterprises to the software industry is marked, but the level of understanding of the ways in which they can survive, grow, and improve is limited. In particular, there has been a lack of information on the long-term outcomes of process improvement initiatives in small firms. Building on the basis of a study of assessment-based improvement in 23 small and medium size organizations, we have undertaken a follow-up meeting with each company approximately five years following the original assessment. The results show that changes made in an organisation, driven by a framework of model-based improvement, can have long-term impacts even in small organisations; it appears, however, that there is no necessary link between success in implementing improvement and survival of the organisation. The results provide insight into the extent to which improvement actions can reinforce overall success for the small business.

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