Customer-specific teams for agile evolution of large-scale embedded systems
Book chapter, 2014
© 2014 Springer International Publishing Switzerland. All rights reserved. Companies serving multiple customers or a segmented mass market often struggle with two conflicting forces. On the one hand, companies need to deploy a constant stream of new features to their customer base. On the other hand, individual customers demand rapid feedback to their request for dedicated functionality. Although the conflict of achieving scale and at the same time staying responsive to individual customers has been recognized by others, it is particularly challenging in large-scale software development. In this paper, we study the concept of customer-specific teams (CSTs) as an answer to this challenge. The CST notion builds upon agile values and is an effective means to shorten feedback loops and increase customer responsiveness, customer satisfaction, and feature quality. Also, the approach allows for more innovative feature development bringing with it new business opportunities in a market where competition is fierce. We illustrate and validate the approach in the context of one of the business units of Ericsson.