Modeling and Documentation 2013 Mini-Survey Results

Scott W. Ambler + Associates
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How to Measure Anything 2nd Edition This survey was performed during the fourth week of October 2013 and there was 162 respondents. The survey was announced via a link to the survey was posted on my IT Surveys home page at www.ambysoft.com/surveys/, announced on my Twitter feed, my mailing list (ambysoft@yahoogroups.com), the IIBA, Considerate Enterprise Architecture, Project/BA World, and Disciplined Agile Delivery (DAD) discussion groups on LinkedIn.

The Survey Results

The survey results are summarized in my DDJ article entitled UML 2.5: Do you even care? The survey had two goals: First, to explore what IT professionals think about common modeling notations such as Unified Modeling Language (UML) and Business Process Model and Notation (BPMN) and second to see how these notations are being used.

Some findings include:

Figure 1. What people think of UML.

What people think of UML

Figure 2. What people think of BPMN.

What people think of BPMN

Figure 3. UML/BPMN usage in general.

What diagrams are people using

Downloads

Survey questions

The Survey Questions

Survey Data File

Raw Data

Survey Presentation

Summary Presentation

What You May Do With This Information

You may use this data as you see fit, but may not sell it in whole or in part. You may publish summaries of the findings, but if you do so you must reference the survey accordingly (include the name and the URL to this page). Feel free to contact me with questions.Better yet, if you publish, please let me know so I can link to your work.

Discussion of the Results

  1. I forgot to ask about use case diagram usage in question #3. I suspect this diagram is used fairly regularly, perhaps at a similar level as class diagrams, but can't say for sure.
  2. It's hard to say what the usage rates of a given diagram is based on the paradigm that the team is following for two reasons. First, the usage question was too general (I didn't ask the person to answer from a specific paradigm in question #3) and the sample size is too small anyway.
  3. People didn't know the purpose of the survey, so that likely removed some bias. My strategy for the SA+A surveys is to send out a short survey every two months but to not indicate what the topic of the survey actually is (other than an IT topic of course).
  4. I purposely kept this survey short. The longer a survey is the greater the drop out rate. As a result I didn't ask questions this time around tool usage, nor did I ask anything about the production of deliverable documentation such as user manuals or operations guides.
  5. This survey suffers from the fundamental challenges faced by all surveys.

Links to Other Articles/Surveys

  1. My other surveys

Why Share This Much Information?

I'm sharing the results, and in particular the source data, of my surveys for several reasons:

  1. Other people can do a much better job of analysis than I can. If they publish online, I am more than happy to include links to their articles/papers.
  2. Once I've published my column summarizing the data in DDJ, I really don't have any reason not to share the information.
  3. Too many traditionalists out there like to use the "where's the proof" question as an excuse not to adopt agile techniques. By providing some evidence that a wide range of organizations seem to be adopting these techniques maybe we can get them to rethink things a bit.
  4. I think that it's a good thing to do and I invite others to do the same.


Disciplined Agile Delivery: The Foundation for Scaling Agile Agile Modeling: Practices for Scaling Agile Agile Data: Practices for Scaling Agile EnterpriseUP: Agility at Scale Software Development Practices Advisor Scott Ambler + Associates Follow @scottwambler on Twitter!


Copyright 2013 Scott W. Ambler

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