Monday, August 21, 2006

Software development and mass production mentality

In the last few decades the mass manufacturing industries went on a spree to create "intelligent" machines. The intention of this creation was to solve complex industrial problems quickly, and reduce the manufacturing defects. The only thing the "isolated" worker would do in the assembly line, was to pickup the parts from one line and feed it to next. There was no need to "talk" or "communicate" to the fellow worker. Can you see any similarity between the above example and, "traditional" software development teams ? . The traditional software development is plagued by "mass production mentality". The requirements team would feed set of documents to analysts, who in turn analyze and feed to design team. The design team would feed the high level and low level design docs to development team, etc. Each team has there own specialty and is happy doing the routine work !.

In the lean enterprise, the employees would talk and take help from each other while solving complex problems. They would make use of big visible "andan" systems to constantly monitor the status of production, defects, inventory information. This leads to better communication, leading to creative solution.

No comments: