Software process improvement too often reflects a significant disconnect between theory and practice. This book bridges the gapoffering a straightforward, systematic approach to planning, implementing, and monitoring a process improvement program. Project managers will appreciate the book's concise presentation style and will be able to apply its practical ideas immediately to real-life challenges. With examples based on the authors' own extensive experience, this book shows how to define goals that directly address the needs of your organization, use improvement models appropriately, and devise a pragmatic action plan. In addition, it reveals valuable strategies for deploying organizational change, and delineates essential metrics for tracking your progress. Appendices provide examples of an action plan, a risk management plan, and a mini-assessment process. You will learn how to: Scope and develop an improvement plan Identify and prioritize risks and mitigate anticipated difficulties Derive metrics that accurately measure progress toward business goals Sell your improvement program in-house Initially target practitioners and projects most-open to new approaches and techniques Stay focused on goals and problems Align the actions of managers and practitioners Delay major policy documents and edicts until solutions have been practiced and tested Use existing resources to speed deployment Incorporate improvement models, such as SEI CMM(R) and CMMISM, into your improvement program For those managers who are tired of chronic project difficulties, constant new improvement schemes, and a lack of real progress, this easily digestible volume provides the real-world wisdom you need to realize positive change in your organization.