jeudi 19 janvier 2012

Software Change Management by Donald J. Reifer - Book review

Software Change Management

Case Studies and Practical Advice

By: Donald J. Reifer

Published: December 29, 2011
Format: Paperback, 192 pages
ISBN-10: 0735664757
ISBN-13: 978-0735664753
Publisher: Microsoft Press

"This book was written to equip those making and managing changes in software organizations with the processes, techniques, and tools that they need to be successful", writes successful entrepreneur, software consultant, thought leader, and teacher Donald J. Reifer, in his very hands on and pragmatic advice filled book Software Change Management: Case Studies and Practical Advice. The author describes how to integrate effective and lasting software change within both private and public sector organizations through insightful case study examples of software change.

Donald J. Reider recognizes that problems do arise when planning and implementing software change. The author understands that the challenges facing change agents are not only ones involving technology. Change affects people both individually, and as part of the entire organization. Donald Reider provides strategies for creating sustainable change through a deeper understanding of the people, change process, and software products involved in the transformation. Through his own experience, and through a series of ten case studies involving different change scenarios, the author offers ideas and lessons for organizational change, that avoid the many mistakes and obstacles that can work to block or derail a change initiative.

Donald J. Reifer (photo left) presents an overview of the software change management process, from the planning process to the final implementation by the organization. The author describes many different situations, where problems ranging from inefficiency, to waste, to outright incompetence, stand as roadblocks to the needed change. Donald Reifer presents a series of case studies that show what works, and what doesn't get positive results, when facilitating software change.

Donald J. Reifer offers a systematic approach to software change management. His framework includes the following considerations:

* Organization, its infrastructure and portfolio
* Project infrastructure
* Process including developmental models and activities
* Product in the form of the deliverables
* People in the workforce ,teams, characteristics, and skills
* Change agents and their role at all phases of change

For me, the power of the book is how Donald J. Reifer provides a workable framework for facilitating software change management that includes all aspects of the organization. The book is written for the decision makers and change agents, to equip them with the tools for successful change initiatives. The strategies shared in the book are applicable to a wide cross section of organizations from entrepreneur based companies, to large companies, to non-profit organizations, and for government agencies. The author assumes a basic knowledge of software engineering and fundamentals of management. To reinforce and illustrate his concepts, the author provides ten real world case studies that illustrate the challenges and solutions to software management issues.

I highly recommend the very engaging and real world based book Software Change Management: Case Studies and Practical Advice by Donald J. Reifer, to any decision makers and change agents seeking a practical and real world based guide to holistic change management. This book will ease the transition from existing and legacy software systems to a complete change in the systems and processes across the entire organization.

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