Application development companies can save millions and compete with large integrators according to Gartner Group figures, using project management tools to improve development productivity by roughly 30 per cent.
Speaking at ABT?s Project Leadership Conference in Chicago, Richard Hunter, research director at Gartner, said a typical applications development company with 200 developers and 20 project managers on average salaries should expect to cut costs and gain productivity benefits worth $2.9 million over four years, by implementing integrated process and project management methods.
?The typical applications development organisation is not learning these methodologies to compete with large integrators,? he said. ?That?s one reason why outsourcing has grown so much.?
He warned that customers should recognise that systems integrators often have different goals to their customers, including margin retention and customer satisfaction. ?But the 30 per cent productivity increase explains why SIs can charge the prices they do, because they come up with the productivity gains,? he said.
Hunter said applications development companies with 100 employees can expect to spend $10 million over 5 years on cancelled projects. He advised companies to use triangulation and phased cost estimates for application development and track development using earned value analysis.
Hunter said the methods were most effective when implemented with a moderate degree of enforcement, rather than strictly controlled with rigorous audits. ?You don?t have to implement a fascist regime to implement these methods to get productivity gains, as long as you do the right things most of the time,? he said.
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