OSS has a bad name amongst many of our customers. Yes, even though they invest billions in our industry each year. Do they consider us a necessary evil?
Quality, dependability, repeatability. These are the catch-cries of success in many industries. TGW (things gone wrong) per million or per thousand are common metrics that are the bellweather of attaining success (or not).
Do we have such metrics in OSS? How would we fare against other industries – our failure rates against airlines, manufacturing, automotive, medical, etc?
To be honest, I don’t think we’d rate well. Some might claim that we are more nascent (less mature) but perhaps only a couple of decades younger?
I believe it stems from the fact we have so many things that are always left to do, meaning that we don’t have the chance to reach for the same lofty quality goals yet (or perhaps it’s just that our things gone wrong rarely result in fatalities?)
We’re trying to deliver so much functionality that we rarely have time to go back and improve existing functionality unless there’s a bug. If we deliver a capability we have move on to building the next capability as the to-do list is so long.
Does this mean our customers can’t trust our industry for quality, dependability, repeatability?
I wonder whether we need to narrow our scope to give our customers top-level quality, dependability, repeatability and attentiveness?
Just pondering a comparison here… Has the auto industry managed to drastically reduced their tgw per million through their collaboration? Sub-contracting parts (electronics, shockers, tyres, etc) to produce a better quality whole with each contributor focussing on improving quality of their parts.
Is John Reilly’s value fabric our only possibility for achieving much loftier goals as an industry? If so, it does tie into the Christmas tree model I’ve discussed previously.
More tomorrow.Read the Passionate About OSS blog for more.