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INauseous() Shawn Cicoria - Solution Architect, Craftsman and Artisan - INauseous() - Main Blog Here:

My old company Avanade is getting some really bad press, along with Accenture - Rocky Failed to Connect CSTARS...

The only question, whose version of the truth do you want to believe?  In the article you certainly see a string of other failed Solution Development efforts, one common theme is Accenture, although SAP and another un-named team for another.  I'm sure there are others.  Just that this article pulls out this set of failures.

In reality the project failed because of the people on the project - not the company.  The people from Colorado State Government, it's vendors, employees, Accenture and Avanade.  It really is that simple.  It wasn't the technology, it wasn't an unachievable goal.  System development can't be that hard is it? (that was a JOKE - I've heard that from some of the A&A guys). 

Well, it is hard to build systems.  You need dedicated, motivated people, and a mix of oversight and technical skills.  I don't have insight, but I'm sure some death marching orders were issued, people were afraid to speak up, the people implementing (developers) had too many layers between them and the product owners and business subject matter experts.  COMMUNICATION FAILURE!!!!!

There are some foundational issues with they way A & A approach gigs, but things like Agile-Scrum approaches certainly cut the risks of spending 2 years on a project and $30 Million down quite a bit - because after each Sprint (stick with 4 weeks here) you get acceptance.  If not, you fix it and then continue to add functionality over time.  I still can't fathom why A & A just don't bite off on Agile-Scrum - actually I do know why, but that's more to do with their economic model on solution delivery - but that's another long story.

Posted on Thursday, August 16, 2007 7:31 AM Architecture | Back to top

Comments on this post: Old Company Getting Some Bad, Perhaps Wrong Press?

# re: Old Company Getting Some Bad, Perhaps Wrong Press?
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Well, what some co's are good at is connecting with the "C" levels and convincing them of their "worth". In reality, these co's are made up of "amateurs" and the best kept secret is their average age is around 25 yrs. old.

So, Republican Gov. Bill Owens decides to call in his golfing buddy and over a few scotchs they decide that hand over the reins and $100MM to spend on building a bunch of systems. Only problem is, as soon as the money is handed over, the vendor just thinks in terms of cost and not capability because that would first be too hard, or is it to much? Well, if they've just gotten out of B school then it's "too much $" and they have no concept on how to place value on experienced consultants, good people, etc. - you're just a body.
Left by CR on Aug 16, 2007 7:41 AM

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