1. What’s going on?
The selected case study is about the problem of early software launch. The CEO of the software company orders the Program director to launch the software one month earlier than the pre-defined date. For this purpose, the Program Director of the company said the project manager of the project to deliver the project as early as possible so that their company can get a new huge project, which will be very beneficial for the company (Al-Saggaf, 2016). The main points of this case study are discussed below.
- As per the client requirement, the CEO of the company orders the Program director to deliver the project one month earlier to get the contract of the next project from the customer.
- Then the Program director talks with a project manager about the early launch and offers bonus or incentives to him for early software launch.
- Project manager of the company is in an ethical dilemma about the current situation because he knows that a good quality project cannot be delivered in such a short time period.
- Therefore, the Program director ordered the project manager to deliver the project by ignoring its security techniques i.e; encryption.
- Project managers ask for time to discuss it with the team members.
2. What are the facts?
There are various facts associated with this case, which are explained below.
- The company can get a high-profit project if it launches the current project one month earlier.
- The CEO of the company is willing to compromise the position of the company in the market for high profits.
- High quality of software project cannot be delivered one month earlier from predefined date.
- To launch it earlier, the Program Director is willing to compromise with the security of the project by designing it without the encryption.
- But the project manager is not willing to compromise the security of the software and wants to discuss it with the team.
- The Program director tries to insist on the project manager and the project team by offering bonus and incentives to them.
3. What are the issues?
- Company is ready to launch the project without the encryption. It will result in the breach of security as well as the client’s trust in the company.
- It may tarnish the reputation or position of the company in the market.
- CEO and Program director are insisting the project manager and entire project team develop the project by compromising or breaching its security.
- If the software gets hacked, private or confidential data of client as well as users can be lost which will cause various legal issues like as violation of privacy or data protection acts (Al-Saggaf, 2017).
- The lost data m be used in criminal or illegal activities.
4. Who is affected?
From the decision of early software launch, various stakeholders can be affected which are explained below.
- Reputation and position of the company in the market.
- Project team who developed and delivered this project.
- A project manager who is responsible for the proper development and management of this software project.
- The client of the company who is buying this software and users who are going to use this software will also be affected.
5. What are the ethical issues and implications?
Launch of software without encryption can cause various ethical issues and implications, which are discussed below:
- Delivering a project without encryption will breach the trust of the client.
- By forcing the project manager and team members to launch the project earlier, the company is forcing them to be disloyal and dishonest towards their profession.
- Company is compromising the privacy of the client or users for the sake of its own profit (Al-Saggaf, 2017).
- The company tries to buy the moral character of the project manager and project team by offering them bribes in the form of bonus and increment.
6. What can be done?
- The project manager or project team can raise their voice against the early software launch without encryption.
- The program director can communicate with the CEO of the company and discuss various issues associated with the early software launch.
- The CEO of the company can communicate with the client and try to persuade him to give some more time for the launch of the software by honestly discussing the consequences of early software launch (Calderón & Ruiz, 2015).
- Privacy of users should be the topmost priority of the company.
7. What are the options?
There are three possible options to solve this ethical dilemma.
- 1st Option: Program director surrenders to pressure
Program director follows the orders of CEO of the company to launch the project one month earlier without the encryption schemes.
It will provide the contract of the high-profit project but would not solve the current problem.
It may breach the trust of the client and may tarnish the image of the company by forming many legal as well as ethical issues.
- 2nd option: Program director ignores Project Manager’s recommendation
This would also not solve the current problem and cause various serious issues between the project team, project manager and program director.
- 3rd option: program director listens to the team.
This option can solve the problem of security but would not deliver the project before the predefined time.
With the minimal delay, the high quality and secure project will be delivered to the client.
8. Which option is best and why?
The 3rd option “Program director listens to the team” would be the best option because in this option, the secure and high-quality software will be delivered on predefined time which includes encryption schemes. It will prevent from various legal and ethical issues. As the client’s trust and privacy is the topmost priority of companies, this option would be the best option to maintain the trust and privacy of the client.
Al- Saggaf, Y., 2016. ICT Ethics- Early Launch.[Web]. Retrieved From: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v5M7ohdZ6qA&=&list=PL8BUtM6njqLsSqbpWzZ59bdy2IOmZXpQU+on+15th+March+2018
Al-Saggaf, Y., Burmeister, O. K., & Schwartz, M. (2017). Qualifications and ethics education: the views of ICT professionals. Australasian Journal of Information Systems, 21.
Calderón, A., & Ruiz, M. (2015). A systematic literature review on serious games evaluation: An application to software project management. Computers & Education, 87, 396-422.