Pragmatic Advice for Succeeding with RUP


The Rational Unified Process (RUP) is effectively defunct. In 2008 IBM dropped support of RUP as a product in favor of a plugin for its process repository product called IBM Rational Method Composer (RMC). More importantly, for very good reasons, organizations around the world have either abandoned RUP or are in the process of doing so.

What Happened?

RUP started in the mid-1990s as a small manageable process framework targeted specifically for building software within the context of an iterative lifecycle. However over time, Rational (and subsequently IBM Rational) added additional guidance and artifacts to extend the applicability of RUP to all sorts of situations, such as package implementation, maintenance projects, technology specific guidance (J2EE, .Net etc.), systems engineering and may other project types. In practice RUP suffered from several problems:

Yes, RUP properly applied in the right circumstances can be very effective. Unfortunately though, that often did not happen in practice.

It's Time to Move On

Many organizations that adopted RUP in the past have decided to, or are currently thinking about, adopting a more agile way of working. Unfortunately they are finding agile methods such as Scrum and XP to be inadequate as they do not address the full range of complexities faced by RUP shops. Yes, it is definitely possible to start with something like Scrum and evolve it to meet your needs, but you will quickly find that this is a time-consuming, expensive, and error-prone strategy.

Luckily there is a better answer: The Disciplined Agile (DA) framework. The DA process decision framework is a people-first, learning-oriented hybrid agile approach to IT solution delivery. It has a risk-value delivery lifecycle, is goal-driven, is enterprise aware, and is scalable.

There are clearly some interesting aspects to the DA framework:

Disciplined Agile

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