Manage The Growth Of Your Software Products

Does this company’s challenge sound familiar? An SME successfully develops and implements production management systems on the local market. Gradually, it integrates more and more features and specific possibilities for various client sectors. By doing so, the software product can be implemented for more and more segments after a limited customization. This product strategy works well until the tension rises significantly between the commercial team and the development team. The developers blame the commercial people for the unrealistic promises they make to clients, while the commercial people blame the developers for not being flexible, resulting in a decrease in product quality and an explosion of product bugs. Finally, the management is confronted with both of these opinions and is asked to help push things along. After an initial truce, the problems turn out to be bigger than expected. The management has to intervene on an ad-hoc basis more and more, implementation in the development team is not going smoothly, and the salespeople go their separate way and do their thing.

You are probably interested in these insights if you ask yourself one of these questions:

  • Which product variants should you offer based on the needs of the market?
  • How to decide which features your product needs in order to meet customer expectations?
  • How to decide what to implement as a generic product and what as a specific customer development?

Where do things go wrong and where are the levers to take on this challenge?

Sirris has helped with a number of these cases at Belgian companies and a number of Brussels university teams have also developed solutions.

Would you like to learn how to solve this challenge? Come then to the next VariBru gathering on November 17, where you will have the opportunity to meet experts on this topic and get advise on your specific challenges. This event will also give you the opportunity to discover potentially relevant technologies for your product and to meet Dr. Frank van der Linden from Philips Healthcare (The Netherlands), author of several books on software product lines, who will give a keynote on techniques for dealing with variability in complex software product lines.

If you have had a successful experience within your own company, share your insights with us in a comment or at the event.

This article and the VariBru initiative are supported by Innoviris and by the Brussels region in the context of the Impulse Program for ICT. Sirris provides advice in connection with this issue within the scope of its Software Engineering and ICT and Mistral Technology strategy services.