International Software Process Association (ISPA)

SP'96 - Tutorials

Title: The BOOTSTRAP methodology
Tutor: Pasi Kuvaja (Leansoft), Richard Messnarz (ISCN)

Who should attend

Business managers who want to quantitatively understand the software processes. Project managers who want to identify key areas for improvement. Software practitioners who want to learn about key practices for better software development.


To provide the attendees with basic BOOTSTRAP know-how. To support participants in identifying how this approach could be applied in their own organisations.


The BOOTSTRAP architecture: The BOOTSTRAP methodology was initially based on the original SEI model as a starting point, and was extended with features of the ISO 9000-3 guidelines and the ESA software engineering standards. Recently the BOOTSTRAP methodology has adopted new features of SPICE, the future ISO standard.

The BOOTSTRAP questionnaire: In BOOTSTRAP we use four types of questionnaires - one for the SPU (Software Producing Unit), one for projects, and one for each SPU and project for collecting general data like business sector, project size, types of applications, etc. The collection of such general data is necessary to allow queries like: what is the mean profile of German organisations in the telecom sector ?

The BOOTSTRAP evaluation method: The scoring and rating principles of the BOOTSTRAP methodology will be discussed. Scoring and rating principles in the BOOTSTRAP methodology have been very carefully designed and supported with guidelines for scoring and the BOOTSTRAP algorithm for rating. Especially the BOOTSTRAP algorithm was needed for two reasons: first, the number of practices and corresponding questions in the questionnaires vary between different capability levels. The second reason was the openness of the BOOTSTRAP capability dimension, where processes may span several maturity levels.

A sample case study: A case study about an SME will be presented starting from problem awareness, through process analysis and goal-based improvement planning, and finally to implementation of a process improvement project including the measurement of achieved benefits.

Benefits for those attending

Participants get an overview of the BOOTSTRAP methodology, its principles, architecture, questionnaire and evaluation approach, together with European results and practical experience.

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