Re: [SystemSafety] Teaching software engineering (was Re: Logic)

From: Watts Malcolm (AE/ENG11-AU) < >
Date: Mon, 24 Feb 2014 14:42:56 +0800


In my experience most companies who are using, investigating or being assessed by (potential) customers against any kind of maturity model (CMM/CMMI, (A)SPICE, ISO/TS16949...) have a pretty good awareness of both specific issues, and general maturity. Use of such a model (by self or others) implies some degree of corporate introspection.

I currently work for a large company, and I can confirm that there are both individual divisions that know their own maturity (against some more-or-less objective standard) and seek to improve it. And there are corporate functions who are aware of the level of maturity of specified divisions or entities, even if those entities are not themselves aware of such. We have an internal culture of this kind of awareness; some of our divisions “compete” (in a nice way) to get recognition via things like the EFQM Excellence Model.

In a company of our size, it would not be sensible to talk about a “company” knowing whether or not it was mature - or even to speak of the whole company being mature or not. (CMMI kind-of recognises this in the scope of appraisal, and setting sponsorship at an appropriate level for appraisals).

I have worked for smaller (ordinary ?) companies that were acutely aware of their level of maturity (in general and regarding specific issues), and of the need to improve. In many cases, the market makes you aware of this; customers, competitors and regulators. Sometimes, internal or external auditing does this too.

In my experience awareness is not evenly distributed. In one company I can think of, the engineering staff, the GM and some other senior managers knew that the company was not mature in a number of ways (engineering, in marketing, and in corporate governance), but the marketing manager and some line managers (for example) apparently had no clue. The company I’m thinking of made improvements because key people knew the issues. I’m not sure what it means to say that “the companies” know...

I think we are an “ordinary” company – as were my previous employers.


From: systemsafety-bounces_at_xxxxxx Sent: Thursday, 20 February 2014 12:03 AM Subject: Re: [SystemSafety] Teaching software engineering (was Re: Logic)

Do you know “ordinary” companies that know that they are not mature ? How can you know that are not mature versus a specific issue which you even ignore the existence ?

Bertrand Ricque
Program Manager
Optronics and Defence Division
Sights Program
Mob : +33 6 87 47 84 64
Tel : +33 1 59 11 96 82

Sent: Wednesday, February 19, 2014 1:58 PM To: systemsafety_at_xxxxxx Subject: [SystemSafety] Teaching software engineering (was Re: Logic)

On 19/02/2014 12:28, Michael J. Pont wrote:

If we want to "change the embedded world" through the teaching that we are

providing in universities, then I think we need to start by covering what I

would see as *core* software-engineering skills for the sector that I work

in (understanding system hazards, recording requirements, use of appropriate

software architectures, use of coding guidelines, code reviews, testing vs.

verification, etc). On top of this, we can add formal methods - but I think

we need what I would see as the core skills first.

I agree. One of the basic insights of the CMM is that you need to move up through the maturity levels and must not skip any steps.



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systemsafety_at_xxxxxx Received on Mon Feb 24 2014 - 07:43:33 CET

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