Empirical Software Engineering

, 13:401

Towards understanding the relationship between team climate and software quality—a quasi-experimental study


DOI: 10.1007/s10664-008-9074-8

Cite this article as:
Acuña, S.T., Gómez, M. & Juristo, N. Empir Software Eng (2008) 13: 401. doi:10.1007/s10664-008-9074-8


This paper describes an empirical study that examined the work climate within software development teams. The question was whether the team climate in software developer teams has any relation to software product quality. We define team climate as the shared perceptions of the team’s work procedures and practices. The team climate factors examined were West and Anderson’s participative safety, support for innovation, team vision and task orientation. These four factors were measured before the project using the Team Selection Inventory (TSI) test to establish subject climate preferences, as well as during and after the project using the Team Climate Inventory (TCI) test, which establishes the subject’s perceptions of the climate. In this quasi-experimental study, data were collected from a sample of 35 three-member developer teams in an academic setting. These teams were formed at random and their members were blind to the quasi-experimental conditions and hypotheses. All teams used an adaptation of extreme programming (XP) to the students’ environment to develop the same software system. We found that high team vision preferences and high participative safety perceptions of the team were significantly related to better software. Additionally, the results show that there is a positive relationship between the categorization of better than preferred, as preferred and worse than preferred climate and software quality for two of the teamwork climate factors: participative safety and team vision. So it seems important to track team climate in an organization and team as one (of many) indicators of the quality of the software to be delivered.


Work climate preferencesWork climate perceptionsWork climate preferences–perceptions fitTeam climateSoftware quality

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Silvia T. Acuña
    • 1
  • Marta Gómez
    • 2
  • Natalia Juristo
    • 3
  1. 1.Universidad Autónoma de MadridMadridSpain
  2. 2.Universidad San Pablo—CEUMadridSpain
  3. 3.Universidad Politécnica de MadridMadridSpain