SECR 2010 is over. To learn about current SECR please visit

Implementing usability methods into CMMI-compliant software development process

Julia Kryuchkova

Dmitry Pavlov

Usability methods are described many times in books, internet articles and well-known standards as ISO (International Organization for Standardization) and CMMI (Capability of Maturity Model Improvements), but nevertheless there are not that many organizations in Russia where the whole process is based on HCD (Human Centered Design). As the result we still have many products which are not serve us as they should and many projects which overrun their budgets dramatically or failed. We keep loosing money and repeat the same mistakes over and over again, and this is true not just for some small and inexperienced companies but also for medium and large organizations.

In our presentation we are looking into the reasons why it is happening, and suggest ways to solve these problems. We think it will be helpful at least for the companies which are open to changes in their process and are mature enough to manage the process across the whole organization. So, we looked at the problem from the point of view of CMMI for Developers, as it is the most popular, open and well-known source of the process improvements’ knowledge and practices. We have found common user-centered methods, described sometimes in different terms. In our presentation we unite the common usability methods and terms suggest the way of practical application of CMMI to organizational process of software development.

In our presentation we describe the steps which should be made to start the process improvements in an organization. We give some examples of the usability/validation methods which can be used on each phase of the project development, including the deliverables for each steps and approximate efforts of these steps.
We want to help organizations similar to ours to understand that:”User centered design is not a step in the process - it is the process. It is not just about usability - it is about value. It is not expensive - it is flexible. It is not the role of one person or department - it is a culture. It is not a choice, it is a means of survival”, as it was said by a usability guru Whitney Hess.

We also hope to influence the new version CMMI for Developers which are coming in the end of 2010. We wish it to become more clear and closer to the common user-centered design terminology. We think that it will make it easier for people to understand CMMI recommendations, and what is most important to apply these recommendations on practice.

We think that our work will help others to start their way to a more user-friendly world today.

Download presentation


Yulia Kryuchkova is a senior usability specialist working in Exigen Services since 2005, in UXD (User Experience Design) Team. Exigen Services is one of the largest outsourcing providers in Russia, that’s why Yulia consider that it is so important to follow the very best practices in the development process. Beside her main duties, Yulia conducts usability trainings for Exigen Services.

6 years Yulia lived in Australia and was lucky to learn from usability, internet marketing and web-standards gurus (Donna (Maurer) Spencer, Gerry McGovern, Hurol Inan & Russ Weakley), and also get very valuable experience working as online development coordinator at William Angliss Institute of TAFE, and a company called East and West Together.

To learn more about Yulia Kryuchkova, please visit

Dmitry Pavlov is a software engineer at Exigen Services.

Dmitry has been involved in software development for over 10 years and is experienced in a wide range of information technologies, architectures, design, practices, processes and methodologies. Being one of the brightest members of technology communities around the world, he was awarded with the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) Award in 2008-2010 in Visual C# for his significant contribution into activities of the Visual Studio Extensibility community. Dmitry has knowledge in the following areas: telecom, networks, e-learning, geology, mapping and GIS, CRM, ERP and HR systems.

A native of St. Petersburg, Russia, Dmitry Pavlov holds a Master’s degree in Computer Systems and Networks (St. Petersburg State Polytechnical University).

To learn more about Dmitry Pavlov, please visit

2 Responses to “Implementing usability methods into CMMI-compliant software development process”