ROI part 2

Thanks to Jim McHale for finding the follow up to Kent Schneider’s story.

Steve Brady and Sherri Turner tell us more about projects A and B, (they reverse the project names) and then about project C

Project A was their baseline.

Project B introduced developer design packages, used PSP, and peer inspected 20% of the “critical code”

Project C

  • used historical data for estimates
  • implemented PSP during the contract proposal
  • introduced 100% peer inspections
  • implemented other CMMI level 4/5 practices

The defects/KLOC delivered to test in project C were a factor of 14 lower than those of project B, and a factor of 50 lower than project A.

Project C had 0% cost overrun, project B, a 32% overrun, and project A a 47% overrun. They then discuss the ROI

Training for project B cost ~$33,600. Peer reviews cost $70,000, for a total of $103,600

The returns on project B were

  • test was completed at 25%
  • Projet B was accepted 7 months before project A
  • SPI improved from 0.746 to 2.657
  • reduced cost overruns by 12 months over project A

Project C inspected 100% of the code the return was

  • prevented 110 critical defects
  • improved cost and schedule performance
  • 4 people tested 700 + cases in 6 days (only 0.36 defects/KLOC entering test!)


They calculated that the additional cost of $11,160 saved $148,500

Read the rest of the report. Their bottom line was

“we can’t afford to manage projects without process”


About Bill Nichols

PhD in Physics from Carnegie Mellon University I'm a software team coach and instructor with the TSP Team at the Software Engineering Institute
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