The Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) is an advanced technique that supports decision makers in structuring complex decisions, quantifying intangible factors, and evaluating choices in multiobjective decision situations. It is a comprehensive and rational decision-making framework that provides a powerful methodology for determining relative worth among a set of elements. AHP is especially suitable for complex decisions that involve the comparison of decision elements which are difficult to quantify. The AHP, and its more recent version the Analytic Network Process (ANP), were developed by Dr. Thomas Saaty and have been applied in a wide variety of decision situations in organizations worldwide. AHP is particularly applicable in managing software complexity, and in Quality Function Deployment (QFD), as presented in Chapter 11 of the book Design for Trustworthy Software.
This short cut illustrates the application of AHP in prioritizing complex design issues. It also shows how AHP and its supporting software, Expert Choice (EC), can handle much higher levels of complexities accurately and expeditiously than the prioritization matrices introduced in Chapter 7 of Design for Trustworthy Software. In addition to solutions facilitated by EC, this short cut also illustrates two known approximations to AHP solutions using manual calculations. Manual calculations can be used to solve relatively less complex problems. They are presented in this short cut to illustrate the first principles and the steps involved in AHP.
This short cut is a reproduction of Chapter 8 of the book Design for Trustworthy Software and introduces AHP with a simple example. It can be used either as a methodology in trustworthy software design process or as a standalone introductory presentation on AHP.
This short cut should be of interest to software and quality professionals. In particular, it would be of value to the CMMI, Six Sigma, and DFSS communities worldwide, especially those who have acquired or plan to acquire Green Belt, Black Belt, Master Black Belt, or similar competencies in various quality management disciplines. It should also be a useful resource for students and academicians of various programs at senior undergraduate and graduate levels, and for those preparing for ASQ's Certified Software Quality Engineer (CSQE) examination.
What This Short Cut Covers 3
Prioritization, Complexity, and the Analytic Hierarchy Process 4
Multiobjective Decision-Making and AHP 5
Case Study 1 Solution Using Expert Choice 12
Approximations to AHP with Manual Calculations 22
Key Points 33
Additional Resources 34
Internet Exercises 34
Review Questions 34
Discussion Questions and Projects 35
What's in the Book Design for Trustworthy Software 47
About the Authors 52
The Design for Trustworthy Software Digital Short Cut Compilation 53