16 May 2007

The shortcomings of the PMBOK and BABOK

If you read the article I linked to in my last post you read that Peter Morris thinks the PMBOK is too limited and that a more holistic framework of managing projects for success is required.

He believes the body of knowledge must go beyond the pure PM techniques and include what is necessary for success for it to be a truly useful PMBOK.

Extending the idea further for business analysts;
Is the IIBA making a mistake by constraining the BABOK to what is unique about the role. Is it unique anyway - see the SWEBOK as an example of overlap. Shouldn't the IIBA work out what the key success criteria are for BAs and make that the foundation of the BABOK?


  1. Hallelujah!

    I like the basics of where the BABOK is, but I miss some of what they are removing and think it needs to go even further. You correctly state the important question is whether the information leads to success in the field.

    Success on the CBAP certification test should be a separate issue, and only and after-thought at that.

  2. Anonymous11:05 pm

    Hey guys, I completely agree that the BABoK is much more useful when focusing on elements of success. However, Kevin has to do a balancing act - keeping the "recommendations" part of the BABoK agnostic to approaches, etc.

    I think the goal of inclusion of ideas (within that document) probably trumps the trumpeting of the best ideas.

    However, it opens a window - a great opportunity for other people to comment on, leverage, and reference the BABoK as part of establishing positions about which practices do best promote success.

    While this approach may not maximize the value of the BABoK (locally), I think it makes it possible that everyone maximizes the value built upon it (globally).

    my 2 cents

  3. Anonymous8:58 am

    Some things to note on the xxxbok family of artefacts:

    Assumes software engineering is analogous with other engineering disciplines
    Makes the assumption that the body of software knowledge can be captured
    Makes assumptions of a persons level of knowledge on using the artefacts
    Industry is currently diverging into two camps:
    Heavy weight processes, such as CMMI, SPICE, RUP, etc
    Light weight processes, otherwise known as Agile, such as eXtreme Programming, Scrum, Agile RUP, etc
    xxxbok only deals with one aspect, the heavy weight, government accepted processes.

    You may also want to look at Computing Curriculum Software Engineering (CCSE) or Software Engineering 2004

    Having said all of that, I believe familiarity with it is beneficial.



  4. Thanks for the comments guys. I am looking forward to how it evolves over the coming years.

    I really do think the PMBOK has been part of the problem with project success and I hope the same problem doesn't happen with the BA BOK.