Assessing the impact of socio-technical congruence in software development: a systematic literature review
Keywords:Socio-technical congruence, Socio technical coordination, Software development, Social dependency, Technical dependency, Socio-technical dependency
AbstractSoftware development is a critical task that depends on coordination among team members and organizational activities that bring team members together. The literature indicates that various techniques have been applied to control the coordination level among team members. Notable among these techniques is social-technical congruence (STC), which helps to measure the alignment between the social and technical capabilities of an organization and teams at various stages of software development. The main objective of this study is to perform a systematic literature review (SLR) that recognizes and structures existing studies that represent new evolutionary trends in the field of STC. A SLR is performed of 46 publications from 4 data sources, including journals, conferences and workshop proceedings, most of which were published between 2008 and 2019. Attention is especially directed to synthesizing the studies related to STC and its impact on software development. To this end, a thorough analysis is carried out to elicit the studies on the basis of 7 research questions in this SLR. The outcome of this SLR is a set of ample research studies representing various aspects, performance impacts, factors, and evolutionary trends in the field of STC. Furthermore, STC measurement techniques are classified in two distinct groups, matrix-based and social network analysis-based measures. After a systematic exploration of these aspects, it is concluded that some areas still require further investigation. For instance, (1) STC-related literature exists, but only one research work mainly focuses on the risk of overwhelming STC (i.e., excessive STC measurement may overburden the software development process); (2) STC measurement techniques facilitate the identification of congruence gaps, but no attention have been given towards the unweighted social network analysis based STC measurement models; (3) STC measurement techniques are generally applied in the development phase of the project lifecycle, but these measurements are rarely used in other software development phases, such as the requirement and testing phases or all phases; and (4) The development factors that effects on STC measurement are rarely focused by researchers in context of various domains.
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