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Software Development and Support Process Definition Services
Key Process Areas

INSTEP has identified ten key process areas that impact the efficiency, effectiveness, and scalability of taking products to market. Not all process areas are covered in every assessment; the scope of an assessment is defined based on the needs of the organization. The ten key process areas are:

Product Development Process
Includes overall life cycle definition, internal development documentation and traceability, predictability, architecture, specifications, development environment/tools, external technology dependency management, special project management, inter-group coordination, maintenance, release/version/configuration management, product release type definition (i.e., major, minor, maintenance, special), product release planning, product release migration and retirement policy, third party software release synchronization, product release management, and product release descriptions.

Quality Assurance
Includes use of reviews/inspections, metrics, unit/integration and system level testing, certification and whole product readiness.

Project Management
Includes all facets of project management related to scope, time, cost, risk, quality, status reporting/metrics, HR and development communications management.

Professional Services
Assesses approach to installing and deploying products at customer locations; includes professional service methodology, channel engineering and the professional services interface to development.

Assesses the structure, role definitions, team make-up, and scalability of the organization.

Covers all aspects of product operations such as the infrastructure, tools and processes used to support deployed products and product manufacture, distribution, metrics, MIS and internal infrastructure.

Customer Support and Satisfaction
Includes customer support process definition, internal and external service level agreement definition, metrics, customer surveys, tools and equipment, installation and getting started support, online support, bug management, use and usability support.

Product Offerings
Includes overall assessment of product in terms of its evolvability, architecture, performance/scalability, supportability, integrability, reliability/stability, consistency, functionality, usability, user documentation, enabling technology, platforms supported and ease of installation.

Product Roadmap and Direction
Assesses the existence of a product roadmap, whole product plans and associated rolling product release plans.

Sales and Marketing (limited to development-related activities)
Includes those aspects of sales and marketing that impact development. This includes quality of sales analysis, special release definition and commitment process, project management, market product requirements definition, product marketing collateral development, product packaging and pricing, competitive analysis, industry analyst and press relations, product alpha, beta, GA and rollout management.

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