Essence Provides a Common View
When ESSENCE was brought into the discussion, it was a marvelous step forward. By using ESSENCE the discussion was focused on the most important things first, we could agree on our common view of Munich Re’s application development process, we could agree on process variants for different circumstances, we could define different practices with different levels of detail and different levels of bindingness, and many things more. In our experience, ESSENCE is a very helpful tool to provide guidance to the projects. The reason is, for defining a way of working, this standard has the right balance between setting an authoritative and guiding common ground, and at the same time allowing a required flexibility to cope with the wide variety of situations in application development. And ESSENCE is very flexible regarding the level of obligation you want to set for the projects.
Plus, over the time we learned that nothing in this standard is company-specific, the ESSENCE elements are universal to all application development endeavors.”
“The application development of Munich Re is globally distributed, and its line organization is divided up along the development disciplines (aka “stove pipe organization”: different departments for project management, requirements engineering, testing, development, technical architecture and so forth). Additionally we work heavily with different outsourcing partners for the disciplines. Hence, in almost every project Munich Re has many participants from different sources who have to agree on a common way of working. In the past we tried different approaches to establish a common view on our application development process.”