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Task Set in Software Process

Each software engineering action is represented by a number of different task sets – each a collection of software engineering work tasks, related work products, quality assurance points, and project milestones.
A task set defines the actual work to be done to accomplish the objectives of a software engineering action. For example, ” requirements gathering” is an important software engineering action that occurs during the communication activity. The goal of requirements gathering is to understand what various stakeholders want from the software that is to be built.
For a small, relatively simple project, the task set for requirements gathering might look like this :

– Make a list of stakeholders for the project.
– Invite all stakeholders to an informal meeting.
– Ask each stakeholder to make a list of features and functions required.
– Discuss requirements and build a final list.
– Prioritize requirements.
– Note areas of uncertainty.

For a larger, more complex software project, a different task set would be required. It might encompass the following work tasks :
– Make a list of stakeholders for the project.
– Interview each stakeholder separately to determine overall wants an needs.
– Build a preliminary list of functions and features based on stakeholder input.
– Schedule a series of facilitated requirements gathering meetings.
– Conduct meetings.
– Produce informal user scenarios based on stakeholder feedback.
– Refine user scenarios based on stakeholder feedback.
– Build a revised list of stakeholder requirements.
– Use quality function deployment techniques to prioritize requirements.
– Package requirements so that they can be delivered incrementally.
– Note constraints and restrictions that will be placed on the system.
– Discuss methods for validating the system.

Both of these task sets achieve requirements gathering, but they are quite different in their depth and formality. The software team chooses the task set that will allow it to achieve the goal of each process activity and software engineering action and still maintain quality and agility.

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