Date of Original Version
Abstract or Description
Understanding the factors that influence software quality is crucial to the continuing maturation of the software industry. An improved understanding of software quality drivers will help software engineers and managers make more informed decisions in controlling and improving the software process. Data from the Personal Software ProcessSM provides insight into interpersonal differences between competent professionals as increasingly disciplined processes are adopted. Program size, (empirically measured) programmer ability, and disciplined processes significantly affect software quality. Factors frequently used as surrogates for programmer ability, e.g., years of experience, and technology, e.g., programming language, do not significantly impact software quality, although they may affect other important software attributes such as productivity. An understanding of these factors may help managers implement practices that support high-quality software.