Knowledge Management in Software Development

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  • EU founded FP7 Project7 partners from 4 countries
  • Like Design ResearchCharacteristic
  • 3. Reflects on 1 & 2 in parallelContributions to body of knowledgecanbeidentifiedResearch processcanbeadjusted4. No directinteraction with projectworkSharingfindingsMakingthemapplicable for future use
  • Traditionally: In Design Science
  • Traditionalareas of research: Design, Data Collection, Data analysis
  • Identifiedknowledge management issues from case company.
  • Following coversresults of all 3 phases.First: Detour. KM Strategies
  • KM Strategy has to fit the competitivestrategy!
  • Reasons forthatarehistoryCMM
  • Codifiedknowledge in form of processesProblems show thatproject managers areoverwhelmed by work. Support neccessary!
  • Making the life of a project managereasier
  • Making the life of a project managereasier
  • To gather more dataVeryfocussedTest users: Experienced professionals, representatives for company and rolesEnsemble view: Right people/scenario/data
  • Perspectivesinfluence km approach and systemPerspectivescan’tbeseparated from eachothertotally. Depending on contextdifferentperspectivesapply (A&L).Design ideas set focus, confirming A&L
  • Aspects:Core software developmentactivitiesProduct & projectmemoryLearning & improvementNonaka: Combination!
  • Project management system => Enterprise systemContributionlimited: Traditional approach
  • Knowledge Management in Software Development

    1. 1. Knowledge Management in Software Development Karsten Jahn PhD Defence November 29, 2012
    2. 2. Knowledge Management Knowledge management enables the knowledge sharing between people, where one person transfers their knowledge to another one.Support:• Knowledge Management Strategy (Hansen et al., 1999)• Knowledge Management System (Davenport & Prusak, 1998) 2
    3. 3. The KiWi Project• Title: Knowledge in a Wiki• Study the possibilities of a semantic wiki in knowledge management. 3
    4. 4. Project Knowledge Management• Case with business partner: Logica – Providing IT & business solutions – ca. 800 IT & Software specialists in DK• Issues regarding knowledge management in the case company – Analyze – AddressResearch Question: How can IT systems support knowledge management in software development? 4
    5. 5. Action Design Research (ADR)• Outlined by Sein et al. (2011) – Method of 4 stages• Dual process – Support practitioners in application domain – Forming theory to be added to body of knowledge• Ensemble view of IT artefacts 5
    6. 6. 4 Stages of ADR 6
    7. 7. Ensemble View of IT Artefacts• Traditionally: Focus on IT artefact• Ensemble view includes e.g. – interaction with people – embedding in context 7
    8. 8. My ADR Data collection fed from: – Ensemble view – Context – Design process 8
    9. 9. Data Collection• Documents from the case company• Interviews – Project visits – Part of final evaluation phase• Meetings – Observations – Participants 9
    10. 10. Data Analysis• On-going process• Important aspect of shaping process• Feeding back into design process (stage 3) 10
    11. 11. ADR 1: Problem Formulation 11
    12. 12. Isolated Islands of Knowledge• Strong project-orientation isolates projects/project knowledge from one another• Problems: – Projects internally encapsulate knowledge, which is created through project work (A1) – Finding experts within company is difficult (A2) – Employees do not share their knowledge with people from other projects (A3) – Documentation of project work is often inconsistent or incomplete (A4) 12
    13. 13. Inadequate Bridging of Knowledge• Bridging of the knowledge isolation is not successfully implemented• Problems: – Process descriptions are too complex and numerous (B1) – Communication between process designers and process executors is difficult to establish (B2) – Documentation provided by projects is not connected (B3) 13
    14. 14. ADR 2: BIE Circles• Through constant iteration of BIE circles – Iterative approach – Consecutive phases – Continuously applied• Outcome: Design – Based on 4 design ideas 14
    15. 15. Knowledge Management StrategyCodification Personalization• People to documents • Person to person• Similarity-based • Goal-oriented• Competitive strategy: • Competitive strategy: Specialization in a Customized & unique certain field solutions• System support: Heavy • System support: Moderate – Archive – Facilitate conversations – Search 15
    16. 16. The Strategies• Focus on one strategy only, reflecting the competitive strategy.• Utilize the other strategy to support – In a 80-20 share 16
    17. 17. Layers in OrganizationProblem analysis showed: – Projects are personalized – Management is codified 17
    18. 18. Design Idea 1 Supporting the two organizational layers with different knowledge management strategies: The management layer follows a codification strategy and the development layer the personalization. 18
    19. 19. Connecting the LayersProject managers are part of both layers – Reporting project status to management – Applying knowledge from management layer in development layer 19
    20. 20. Design Idea 2 Connecting the two organizational layers in order to establish and support knowledge sharing between them. 20
    21. 21. Supporting the Layers Design Idea 3: Utilizing a wiki in order to support the personalization strategy within the development layer. Design Idea 4: Utilizing a project management system (PMS) in order to support the codification strategy within the management layer.PMSWiki 21
    22. 22. KiWi Systems 22
    23. 23. Workflow Scenario 23
    24. 24. Final Evaluation: Settings• User test in usability lab – 2 test users – 3 iterations• Procedure – Follow use cases – Interview• Focus: – Usefulness – Not usability 24
    25. 25. Final Evaluation: Results• Poor usability• Improved information access• Processes easier to follow than to violate• Systems address issues and provide solution 25
    26. 26. ADR 3: Reflecting and LearningResearch Question: How can IT systems support knowledge management in software development?• KiWi systems support knowledge management for case company.• Design ideas are contribution to the body of knowledge 26
    27. 27. Contribution: Design Idea 1”Multiple strategies through layers”• Division of problems reflects layers: – Development → Isolated islands of knowledge – Management → Inadequate bridging of knowledge• Extending theory on strategies: – Acknolowging best fitting strategy in layer – More fine grained choice – 2 strategies in the same organization• Perspectives of knowledge (Alavi & Leidner, 2001) – Context dependend – Predominant ones differ between layers 27
    28. 28. Contribution: Design Idea 2”Connecting the layers”• Addresses problems with connection: – B2, feedback circle. Focus: People. – B3, connected documentation. Focus: Strategies• Aspects of knowledge management in software development (Rus & Lindvall, 2002) – Not equally spread in organization, yet supported• Linking strategies to modes of knowledge creation (Nonaka, 1994)• Extension to Experience Factory (Basili, 1989) – Enabling personalization 28
    29. 29. Contribution: Design Idea 3”Wiki for personalization”• Addresses different problems, because – Centralized system with easy access for everyone – Support for collaboration and communication• Linking personalization to informal knowledge base (Davenport & Prusak, 1998)• Personalized experience factory (Basili, 1989) – Not: People to system, system to people (indirect) – But: People through system to people (direct)• IT support in personalization (Hansen et al., 1999) – 20% codification – Wiki is also: IT support to connect people 29
    30. 30. Contribution: Design Idea 4”Project management system for codification”• PMS necessity for case company and many other organizations• Addresses problem of connecting documentation (B3)• Linking codification to structured knowledge base (Davenport & Prusak, 1998) 30
    31. 31. Contribution: KiWi Systems• Design ideas cannot be seen isolated only• All problems are addressed• Layered approach to focus on different strategies (Hansen et al., 1999)• Implementation to knowledge sharing approach outlined by (Alavi & Leidner, 2001)• Extension to experience factory (Basili, 1989) – No separation between project work and knowledge base• Focus on social aspects, not IT (Kautz & Thaysen, 2001) – IT is part of social aspect 31
    32. 32. Thank you for your attention. 32
    33. 33. KiWi Platform 33
    34. 34. Data Exchange Agent 34
    35. 35. Project Management Application 35
    36. 36. Bibliography• Maryam Alavi and Dorothy E. Leidner. Review: Knowledge Management and Knowledge Management Systems: Conceptual Foundations and Research Issues. MIS Quarterly, 25(1):107-136, 2001.• Victor R. Basili. Software Development: A Paradigm for the Future. In Proceedings of the 13th Annual International Computer Software and Applications Conference (COMPSAC89), 1989.• Thomas H. Davenport and L. Prusak. Working Knowledge: How Organizations Manage What They Know. Harvard Business School Press, Boston, MA, 1998.• Morten T. Hansen, Nitin Nohria, and Thomas Tierney. Whats Your Strategy for Managing Knowledge? Harward Business Review, 77(2):106-116, 1999.• Karlheiz Kautz and Kim Thaysen. Knowledge, learning and IT support in a small software company. Journal of Knowledge Management, 5(4):349-357, 2001.• Ikujiro Nonaka. A Dynamic Theory of Organizational Knowledge Creation. Organization Science, 5:14-37, 1994.• Ioana Rus and Mikael Lindvall. Knowledge Management in Software Engineering. IEEE Software, 19(3):26-38, June 2002.• Maung K. Sein, Ola Henfridsson, Sandeep Purao, Matti Rossi, and Rikard Lindgren. Action Design Research. MIS Quarterly, 35(1):37-56, 2011. 36

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