A software development project can be considered to be risky project due to the uncertainty of the information (customer requirements), the complexity of the process, and the intangible nature of the product. Under these conditions, risk management in software development projects is mandatory, but often it is difficult and expensive to implement.
Expert COCOMO is an efficient approach to software project risk management, which leverages existing knowledge and expertise from previous effort estimation activities to assess the risk in a new software project. However, the original method has a limitation because it cannot effectively deal with imprecise and uncertain inputs in the form of linguistic terms such as: Very Low (VL), Low (L), Nominal (N), High (H), Very High (VH) and Extra High (XH).
This paper introduces the fuzzy-ExCOM methodology that combines the advantages of a fuzzy technique with Expert COCOMO methodology for risk assessment in a software project. A validation of this approach with project data shows that fuzzy-ExCOM provides better risk assessment results with a higher level of sensitivity with respect to risk identification compared to the original Expert COCOMO methodology.