Lean Principles in Software Development
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Lean Principles in Software Development


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Process selection and design are both strategic elements for any organisation as they can contribute directly to the overall efficiency and effectiveness of operations. Organisations make decisions on process selection and design based on the variety in products or services that the system needs to handle, the degree of the equipment flexibility and expected volume output. At the same time, lean operations can benefit the company in producing higher quality products and services and, operating at low cost.

A) By taking as an example a product or a service from an industry that you are familiar (Note: I would prefer Construction Industry) with, critically discuss the main factors that influence the manufacturing/service process design. (70% of the mark)

B) By utilising your example above please analyse how implementation of Lean Principles may assist the Operations Manager/Manageress in optimising efficiencies while minimising cost and improving customer service levels. (30% of the mark)


Executive summary 

Software industry is one of the most competitive industries in the world and therefore, software developers work in a stressful business environment, which requires them to have a quick turnover of software products. In this competitive industry, maximum optimization must be achieved to gain competitive advantage in the industry. By the very nature of the industry, the software development process is a complicated process that gets influenced by a large number of different market forces and factors. 

This paper examines the software industry for the various faactors that influence the software development process. The purpose followed by this study is to identify the issues faced by developers in the software development process and then evaluate if adoption of lean principle enhances the software development process to get rid of the issues. For this purpose, firstly the various factors that influence software development process are discussed, which include factors linked to the development team, organisation, the software product, contract formation, client involvement, and development methodologies.


From analysis of the industry structure, it is identified that the software development process usually follows an unpredictable market trend due to rapid changes in the market environment. Upon introduction of lean concept for its usability potential in software development process, the concept of lean principles is defined for use in the software industry. It is argued that adoption of lean principles eliminates 'waste' from the development process, which refers to tasks and operations that do not add value to the final product. Adhering to lean principles enhances quality of the software development process and makes it more feasible and viable by reducing cost, wastage of resource, and time to develop. The lean principles discussed in this paper are applicable for software projects, application development, and system development. 

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