Cost estimation framework for software development

Pao Yue-kong Library Electronic Theses Database

Cost estimation framework for software development


Author: Luk, Chun-kit
Title: Cost estimation framework for software development
Degree: M.Sc.
Year: 2000
Subject: Computer software -- Development -- Estimates
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: Multi-disciplinary Studies
Dept. of Computing
Pages: 112 leaves : ill. ; 30 cm
Language: English
InnoPac Record:
Abstract: When software developers work on development projects, they generally have many interdependencies. They will discuss with team members on the task commitment, priority. They start to plan the work. In the planning process, project cost will be included in the plan too. This is essential when work is done under contract and the potential customers want to know the price in advance. In order to include the project price in the project proposal, software development cost is considered. The development cost can be calculated using the development effort. Usually, the development effort is measured by the time spent finishing the development tasks. From past projects, the development time vary substantially from the original planned, the actual development cost spent deviated from the project proposal. Some development projects were overestimated the costs, while many were underestimated. There are a few cost estimation techniques proposed in the software engineering field, trying to help the software developers to predicate the development cost in a more reasonable manner. Cost estimation techniques, like COCOMO, Function Point Analysis, were taught in the academic courses. The recognition of software development cost estimation is being accepted in certain extent. Due to the requirements of the working responsibilities, I was involved to produce human resources estimation in the working software development projects. The accuracy of the effort estimation is not deterministic as expected, however. The applications of the known cost estimation techniques are not efficient too. In order to ease the effort estimation process, a new estimation model was proposed. The proposed model was built with ease to use, and reasonably accurate in mind. The model was validated the accuracy by estimating some working projects in my working company, and the estimated efforts were compared with the actual cases. Throughout the case studies, a few recommendations raised out. Also, the strengths and weaknesses of the proposed model were discussed. To improve the estimation model in a generic application, the model was expanded into a cost estimation framework. In the framework, a few procedural steps were presented; developers can follow the steps and they can be guided through the effort estimation process in a more efficient way.

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