Re: Doc version control - in-house

Subject: Re: Doc version control - in-house
From: Sally Derrick <sjd1201 -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 22 Apr 2010 07:49:33 -0500

I did a very short contract early this year. They used MS Visual Studio
Team System 2008, which fully integrates with SharePoint. The work flow
they had in place forced all of the controls you are looking for. A 'task'
defined the work to be done and it progressed through all the steps in the
process. They tracked the amount of time each person spent on each task
also. With SharePoint on the backend, they got version control plus the
ability to serve up the correct template when someone selected New -> MRD,
for instance.

They developed in .NET and RPG. The .NET developers never left Team
System. All the dev tools and docs they needed were right there. The RPG
developers used their own tools, of course, but still used Team System for
all project docs and workflow.


Sally

On Wed, Apr 21, 2010 at 2:40 PM, McLauchlan, Kevin <
Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com> wrote:

>
>
> Chris Morton suggested:
>
> > Well, I certainly *cannot* recommend Quadrite's RitePro.
> > Among other issues,
> > they refuse to listen to any customer input regarding their
> > clunky web-based
> > UI, always stating, "It was specifically designed that way!"
> >
> > We're now looking ourselves (again)...
> > ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
>
>
> Can you give some hints as to what fails or what you
> find annoying about using the product?
>
> I have two areas of interest... only because I read and
> depend upon the documents produced by the other folks,
> to do my own work:
>
> 1) At some point - early in the project - the Marketing
> Requirements Document (MRD) should "freeze" (stop that snickering)
> and become generally available in a public place (inside
> our company). Any further discussion and changes to the
> content should result in a formal revision-bump. This
> should be enforced by the system. Reviews of each version
> and the approvals should be enforced by the system. You
> can't "release" a new version without it being digitally
> signed-off by key persons. You can make your proposed
> new version available for review and comment, but it
> carries a designation that makes clear it's not been
> approved.
>
> 2) Documents like the SOW (Statement of Work - Engineering's
> response to the requirements in the MRD) should also
> become controlled in the same way. Even better would be
> if changes to (say) the MRD were to trickle down to
> the SOW - or at least, to a proposed new version of the
> SOW. In turn, when the SOW update is approved, that would
> trigger a review cycle for docs that depend on the content
> of the SOW, like the Test Plan(s), Test Cases, Test Reports,
> Manufacturability Report, Work Instructions (to the people
> who eventually will _do_ the manufacturing), etc.
>
> So....
>
> a) It should be obvious to all that a new rev of a document
> is in the works
>
> b) Viewing/finding docs, and seeing their status should be
> easy.
>
> c) If "floating" licenses/seats are involved, they should
> age and close with inactivity (so the early bird each
> morning can't just tie up a license all day when they
> don't really use it much).
>
> d) Reviews should be "pushed". It should not be required
> that a person come looking for status of a document. If
> they are on the Required Reviewer list, or just on the
> Info-only list for a document or a set of documents,
> they should receive an e-mail or a text message to alert
> them that a document is changed.
>
> e) Deadlines should be settable, and automated nagging
> should be available, to prompt reviewers to get their
> butts in gear when a revised document must get approved.
>
> f) Currency and supersession should be obvious.
>
> g) Relationships/dependencies between/among documents
> should be obvious. A new rev of the SOW for a project
> should raise a flag for each dependent/downstream
> document, that must be mindfully cleared either by
> those documents being updated/reviewed/re-approved,
> or an authority taking an action to indicate that
> the upstream change has been considered and is determined
> to NOT require a change to some subset of downstream
> docs.
>
> h) All of this stuff - the actions by people and by
> the system (any state changes) should go into an
> audit trail or log that is timestamped (NTP?) and
> carries the person's digital signature. No anonymous
> changes to docs in the system.
>
> i) Other stuff that's not coming to mind just now...
>
> Oh yeah! Automated interconnections among docs should
> work - at least - for MS Office docs, but it would be
> nice if an open file format like .odt were supported, too.
> (yes, yes, dream on)
>
>
> - Kevin
>
>
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References:
Doc version control - in-house: From: McLauchlan, Kevin
Re: Doc version control - in-house: From: Chris Morton
RE: Doc version control - in-house: From: McLauchlan, Kevin

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