SoftwareMark pilot hits Tassie

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A government-sponsored software industry lobby has embarked on a developer certification program pilot it claims could eventually boost local ISV credibility overseas.

A government-sponsored software industry lobby has embarked on a developer certification program pilot it claims could eventually boost local ISV credibility overseas.

Nathan Brumby, CEO of Software Engineering Australia (SEA) -- a private, not-for-profit company funded and set up by the Federal Government four years ago -- said ten companies in Tasmania were piloting a program, dubbed SoftwareMark, certifying Australian software developers with up to 90 staff against a set of capability-based criteria.

He said SoftwareMark would initially only be awarded within Australia but would stipulate criteria equivalent to globally-recognised standard CMMI Level 2.

“CMMI Level 2 will enable them to go anywhere in the world,” Brumby said.

SEA would start rolling the program out across Australia from January if the Tasmanian pilot succeeded, he said.

The SoftwareMark concept was similar to a Woolmark certification displayed by fine carpets and other quality wool products. To get the right to display SoftwareMark, companies would be assessed on their knowledge of business development, venture capital, law, marketing and public relations and would access process improvement tools and global standard methodology, Brumby said.

He admitted that certain organisations, such as Australian Defence, required a minimum CMMI Level 3 but said SoftwareMark was in an embryonic form.

Tasmania was chosen due to that state's proactive approach to IT industry development and the ease of organising different companies there. “When I was consulting for the SEA there last year, the response to the idea was very strong, such that if we got something like this off the ground it would be valued,” Brumby said.

The ten companies involved include Australian developers such as Crank Media, TurnAround Solutions, Geometry and Agent Technology, he said.

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