QSMA Services


Public Speaking

Michael Mah, Managing Partner of QSM Associates, is a persuasive, insightful and engaging speaker who enlightens companies and groups looking to solve their toughest management challenges. For more than 20 years, Michael’s writings, training workshops and keynote talks have inspired executives and development teams seeking to achieve their goals with practical metrics and modern management […]

consulting2Consulting Services

We’ve got you covered from start to finish. Our professional services meet every test for best practices in serving your internal and external customers — no matter how complex the task, whether Agile or waterfall. Explore our consulting options to facilitate any phase of your decision-making, challenges or project management — to transform goals […]

slim-training2SLIM Training

Our clients strive to exceed expectations. SLIM Tools training brings smart teams and project managers to a new level of excellence and problem-solving. Our two-day Software Estimation and Control Course builds practical skills that you can apply as soon as you return to work. We keep class sizes small and provide students individual coaching. Our […]

Projects can be difficult to estimate.

Deadlines can be hard to negotiate. QSM Associates will help you do both things. State of the art measurement/control tools and applied negotiation skills offer a powerful solution to the challenges posed by Internet-speed projects and deadlines. Let us help you find the “right numbers” and help build the effective negotiation framework for turning ideas into action.

Companies choose QSM Associates as their solution for many reasons:

  • For an independent perspective, not tethered or bound by inter-(or intra)company politics and history. A neutral, authoritative voice to outline project roadblocks and then offer a range of options to go forward.
  • For access to industry experts at QSM,  Cutter Consortium,  Pillar Technology and others.
  • To enable rapid, agile gathering of data showing detailed, dynamic “what if” scenarios for high-pressure software & IT project in hours or days, rather than weeks, right at the desktop.
  • To use over 12,000 completed software projects against which productivity baselines and benchmark can be compared, across all major industries.


The advantage is that any organization, at any stage of capability/maturity in project estimation, can benefit immediately from powerful, easily understood metrics, blended with the presentation and negotiation skills required to build wide consensus and achieve success.

If your organization has ever struggled with estimating: deadlines, costs, personnel, defects or productivity, then QSM Associates can show you a quick, cost-effective way to get the results you need.

Software Development Benchmarking

Most useful when you need an independent measurement baseline quickly, but don’t have the necessary manpower or skills, this entry-level service lets you quickly and accurately assess productivity and quality in your current software development environment. The QSMA software tools used are SLIM and SLIM-Metrics.

QSM Associates will provide professional services including data collection, technical review, assessment, data analysis and a management presentation for your organization. The effort will involve data collection and analysis of software projects that have been completed, or are in-progress and close to completion.

Regular meetings in person or via telephone will be held with your managers or other persons responsible for coordinating the study.

Independent Project Estimates

Most useful when you need independent analysis and risk assessment for a high-profile project. QSMA consultants work with your managers and engineers to extract the relevant information about the system to be estimated. Our estimates include all the viable alternatives (buy vs. build, reduced functionality, additional manpower, incremental deliveries etc.). We use our database of projects to sanity check the estimates and identify areas of high risk, then document the results and brief the project team and management on the alternatives. The QSMA product(s) used are SLIM-Estimate and SLIM-Metrics.

Project Health Check

Most useful when you want QSM Associates to monitor the performance of a contractor or provide oversight on an internally developed product. We work with you to create a custom metrics dash board, collect project performance data each month, and prepare a “red-amber-green” risk assessment report. This service identifies problems early so that appropriate action can be taken. The QSM Associates’ product used is SLIM-Control.

Project Assessments

Most useful when a project is over budget and behind schedule and you need a realistic forecast of completion and alternatives. QSMA consultants reconstruct the quantitative and qualitative history of the project. We forecast completion based on the desired functionality and demonstrated productivity; evaluate alternatives; present options to decision-makers; and develop a new project plan based on the best alternative. The QSM product used is SLIM-Control.

Start-up Mentoring

Implementing new tools and processes can be a challenge for any organization – QSMA’s startup mentoring service focuses on helping you get results fast. Our experienced consultants work as a team with your staff to transfer knowledge and problem solving skills while working on real projects in your environment.

We use an interview process to reconstruct several historical projects and build a completed project database, then use what we learn from your history to tailor phases and milestones, resource profiles, size metrics, productivity metrics, finance metrics, and reliability metrics. We build custom reporting templates, allowing you to professionally communicate the results of your analysis. You benefit by realizing significant time and cost savings and end up with a highly customized SLIM product.

Project Office Design and Implementation

Our consultants work with you to design, build and implement an independent project office that can provide the full range of QSMA service offerings. Our consultants identify where key information is located within your organization. We build the procedures and systems to consistently collect the data. We teach your people how to analyze data and present the results. And we work with your team until they feel comfortable running the office. All QSM Associates tools and methods are used.

Bid Assessments

Most useful when you are outsourcing development work and want to ensure that you select a supplier with a proven track record and the ability to meet contract obligations. We assist government agencies and commercial companies in selecting the software development contractor with the highest probability of delivering the proposed system within contracted time, cost and reliability targets. We develop the metrics section of the request for proposal (RFP) in order to quantify the track record of all the suppliers from past projects. Additionally, our RFP requires a quantifiable bid that can be compared to past performance. The bid is the baseline from which contract performance is measured. All QSMA tools and methods are used.