Studying Supply and Demand of Software Maintenance and Evolution Services



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Software maintenance and evolution constitutes an important part of the total cost of the life cycle of software. Some even argue this is the most important fraction of the cost. The added value of software maintenance and evolution is often not fully understood by the customer leading to a perception that software maintenance organizations are costly and inefficient. A common view of maintenance and evolution is that it merely fixes bugs. However, studies over the years have indicated that in many organizations the majority of the maintenance effort is devoted to value-added activities. To improve customer perceptions it is important to provide them with better insight into the activities performed by the maintenance organization and to document such performance with objective measures of software maintenance activities.

In this paper, software maintenance trend analysis is used as a basis for improvement. First, the differences between software maintenance activities and the Information System (IS) department development projects are described. Then a trend model is developed as a mean to manage the expectations of customers. To conclude, some remarks are made regarding the application of trend analysis by maintenance work categories for software maintenance managers.

Author: Alain April
Published in the Proceeding of the Seventh International Conference on the Quality of Information and Communications Technology (QUATIC2010), Porto, Portugal, September 29 - October 2, pp. 352-357


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I am full professor of Software Engineering at the University of Québec in Montréal, in its Software Engineering faculty. I have more than 30 years of Helthcare, Finance/Banking and Telecommunications IT industry experience, especially in Cloud Computing, Big Data, software acquisition, contracts, software quality assurance and business process management. I am more comfortable with open source, practical applications and technology transfer to industry.
Currently I concentrate on research projects. In the past I was the recipient of the ISO award for higher education in standardization in 2011, as well as the chair of the Software Engineering gratuate program and of the Software Engineering departement. I also published Software Engineering Books: Software Maintenance Improvement and Software Quality Assurance.