Guideline: Customizing a Practice
This guideline provides recommendations on how to structure a customization to an existing practice.
Relationships
Main Description

Practice customizations are stored in a separate plug-ins from the practice being customized. Customizations to things that are delayed assigned (role, domain and discipline assignments) are defined in Practice Assign plug-ins. All other practice customizations are defined in Practice Extend plug-ins. For more information on delayed assignment, see Concept: Delayed Assignment. For more information on Practice Extend and Assign plug-ins, see Concept: Practice Library Plug-In Types.

There are a number of different ways that you can customize an existing practice. You can: 

  • Add a new practice-specific role, task, or work product (and possibly practice-specific processes that assembles those elements)
  • Customize (not just by adding guidance) an existing practice-specific role, task, or work product (and possibly customizing practice-specific processes that assembles those elements)
  • Add new practice-specific guidance and associate that guidance to an existing practice element
  • Customize existing practice-specific guidance
  • Change the practice role assignments (and customize any practice-specific processes to use the new role assignments)
  • Change the practice domain or discipline assignments

The following sections describe how you would structure these practice customizations.

Add a new practice-specific work product

Perform the following steps to structure the addition of a new work product to the practice:

  • If one does not exist, create a Practice Extend plug-in to contain the new work product.
  • In the Extends plug-in, create the new work product.
  • In the Extends plug-in, customize the necessary tasks to include the new work product as an input or an output (see Guideline: Customizing a Method Content Element)..
  • In the Extends plug-in, if the new work product is produced by the practice, then you need to specify what Work Product Slot the work product fills.
       
  • If one does not exist, create a new Assign plug-in to contain the assignment of the work product to a responsible role.
  • In the new Assign plug-in, customize the appropriate role to be responsible for the new work product (see Guideline: Customizing a Method Content Element).
        
  • In the Extends plug-in, if the new work product affects an existing practice-specific process, customize that process to include the new work product and the tasks that produce or consume it, as well as any refined role assignments (see Guideline: Customizing a Process). 
  • In the Extends plug-in, if you want to include the new new work product and the tasks that produce or consume it in a new practice-specific process, create the process (see Guideline: Defining Processes).
      
  • In the Extends plug-in, customize the practice guidance element to add an association to the new work product and any new practice-specific processes (see Guideline: Customizing a Method Content Element).

  

Add a new practice-specific task

Perform the following steps to structure the addition of a new task to the practice:

  • If one does not exist, create a new Extends plug-in to contain the new task.
  • In the Extends plug-in, create the new task, specifying the tasks input and output work products (see Guideline: Defining Method Content Elements). 
          
  • If one does not exist, create a new Assign plug-in to contain the assignment of a performing role to the new task.
  • In the new Assign plug-in, customize the new task to add a primary performing role (see Guideline: Customizing a Method Content Element).
        
  • In the Extends plug-in, if the new task affects an existing practice-specific process, customize that process to include the new task (see Guideline: Customizing a Process).   
  • In the Extends plug-in, if you want to include the new new task in a new practice-specific process, create the process (see Guideline: Defining Processes).
      
  • In the Extends plug-in, customize the practice guidance element to add an association to the new task and any new practice-specific processes (see Guideline: Customizing a Method Content Element).

  

Add a new practice-specific role

Perform the following steps to structure the addition of a new role or work product to the practice:

  • If one does not exist, create a new Assign plug-in to contain the new role.
  • In the new Assign plug-in, create the new role, as well as any role assignments (e.g., responsibility for work products, primary performer for tasks).  For more information, see Guideline: Defining Method Content Elements.
      
  • If one does not exist, create a new Extends plug-in to contain practice customizations resulting from the new role.
  • If the new role affects an existing practice-specific process, in the Extends plug-in, customize the process to include the new role, the tasks it performs and the work products it is responsible for (see Guideline: Customizing a Process). 
  • If you want to include the new role, the tasks it performs and the work products it is responsible for in a new practice-specific process, in the Extends plug-in, create the process (see Guideline: Defining Processes).
  • Associate the role and any new practice-specific processes to the practice guidance element.

  

Customize (not just by adding guidance) an existing practice-specific role or work product

Perform the following steps to structure the customization (not just by adding guidance) an existing practice-specific role or work product:

  • If one does not exist, create an Extends plug-in to contain the practice customizations.
  • Customize the method content elements (see Guideline: Customizing a Method Content Element).
  • If the customized elements affect an existing practice-specific process, customize that process (see Guideline: Customizing a Process).
  • If you want to include the customized elements in a new practice-specific process, create the process (see Guideline: Defining Processes). 
  • Associate any new practice-specific processes to the practice guidance element.

        

Add new practice-specific guidance

Perform the following steps to structure the addition of guidance to the practice:

  • If one does not exist, create an Extends plug-in to contain the practice customizations.
  • Create the guidance and associate with the appropriate practice elements (see Guideline: Defining Method Content Elements).
  • Associate the guidance to the practice guidance element. 

     

Customize existing practice-specific guidance

Perform the following steps to structure the customization of existing practice-specific guidance:

       

Change the practice role assignments 

Perform the following steps to structure the changing of the practice role assignments (what roles perform what tasks or what roles are responsible for what work products):

  • Make a copy of the Practices Assign plug-in to create a new Assign plug-in.
  • In the new Assign plug-in, define any new roles (see Guideline: Defining Method Content Elements).
  • In the new Assign plug-in, change the desired task-to primary performing-role assignments and the role-responsible for-work product assignments (update the contributors). 
          
  • If the practice contains processes that are affected by the role assignment changes, then perform the following to update the practice processes to use the new role assignments:
    • Create an Extends plug-in to contain the practice customizations resulting from the role assignment changes.
    • Make a copy of the default configuration for the process to be updated.
    • In the new configuration, add the new Extends plug-in, remove the original Practice Assign plug-in and select the new Assign plug-in.
    • In the Extends plug-in, for each affected process in the original practice:
      • Create new process by copying the original process
      • Change the default configuration of the new process to the new construction configuration.
      • Synchronize the new process against the new configuration. For more information on descriptors and process synchronization, see Guideline: Defining Processes. The process now should reflect the new role assignments.
           

Change the practice domain or discipline assignments

Perform the following steps to structure the changing of the practice domain or discipline assignments:

  • Make a copy of the Practices Assign plug-in to create a new Assign plug-in.
  • In the new Assign plug-in, define any new domains or disciplines (see Guideline: Categorizing Method Elements Using Standard Categories).
  • In the new Assign plug-in, change the desired domain to work product or discipline to task categorizations (update the contributors). 
  • In order to see the standard category changes, you need to browse a configuration that includes the new Assign plug-in instead of the original Assign plug-in.

  

Special instructions when authoring in the UMF: When customizing a Practice that is to exist within the Unified Method Framework (UMF), you must follow the UMF practice guidelines. For more information, see Guideline: Practices in the UMF.

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