Home > Articles > Software Development & Management

10.6 Transition Strategies

In this section, we identify transition strategies that can help you integrate an open, COTS-based systems approach into your current systems acquisition practices. Use these strategies as a guide for the development of your transition plan.

Before you can make the transition to open, COTS-based systems, you must identify your current situation. This should include examining your existing system, staff, and contractors. Your readiness to make the transition can be evaluated by your answers to a set of questions. These questions assess the qualities of your system, components, and organization that make your project a good (or poor) candidate for open, COTS-based systems. Appendix C, Sample Questions, contains questions you can start with to make your assessment. You may want to add other questions to those suggested by this list, but these are probably the minimum for getting insight into your readiness.

The results of your assessment may indicate that it will be difficult to move aggressively toward open, COTS-based systems. Instead, you may decide to move more slowly, starting with the barriers your assessment revealed. You may not be able to start on an open, COTS-based systems approach immediately, but perhaps you will be able to put some changes in place in the near furure to give you a better prospect for success. Whether you are ready to create a transition plan today or will have to wait for full realization some time in the future, you will need such a plan to see you through the transition. Remember, however, that planning is a continuous process and that the sooner you start, the sooner you will initiate the change in direction of your project.

The first group of transition strategies develops an overall transition strategy and plan. The strategy covers your approach to every aspect of the transition to open, COTS-based systems. The plan identifies revenue sources and contracting strategies. Recruit knowledgeable team members and develop the plan collaboratively.

Government agencies can ask such organizations as the OSJTF for help in planning their transition to open systems. Fewer organizations are available to assist with COTS-based systems questions; look for information from your peers who are succeeding in this new world.

The second group of transition strategies prepares the people in your organization for open, COTS-based systems. Educate your people about open systems and the COTS marketplace in general and about your specific open systems and COTS product plans if any have been formulated. Introduce your people to your approach and to the changes that will affect their jobs.

This preparation also includes identifying a champion for open systems and the use of COTS products. This champion must be a person who understands and supports the move to open, COTS-based systems and has the peer respect and influence to promote the success of the effort. This person (or set of people) need not be in a position of authority; sometimes, a grassroots champion can be more effective than one who has been "crowned" by upper management.

The last group of transition strategies addresses the processes to assist your transition to open, COTS-based systems. In particular, this should include strategies for easing the transition to processes that are new or changed for open, COTS-based systems, such as

  • Identifying and managing your new risks

  • Starting a market research effort

  • Beginning with a pilot project

Other process elements will be suggested by the new approach you adopt.

When you identify your new open, COTS-based risks and plan for them, you can make the transition more easily. Make risk management a defined part of your transition process.

The results of market research provide information about relevant standards, standards-based COTS products, and the historical activities of the major participants in the marketplace. Market research may also be used to keep an eye on technology evolution and new breakthroughs, alerting the project when it looks as though a new technology is ready for serious consideration. The sooner you start your people doing market research, the better positioned you will be to take advantage of the marketplace.

Pilot projects are an effective way to learn about new things without significant risk to your project. Start small, learn from the experience, and then take on greater challenges. In particular, find a small project that is not on the critical path and assign a core group of people to it. Through their experiences, you can better determine how open, COTS-based systems affect your current processes. You can make the necessary changes to those processes and then take on a larger effort with more of your people.

InformIT Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from InformIT and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information

To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.


Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites, develop new products and services, conduct educational research and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.


If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email information@informit.com.

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information

Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at customer-service@informit.com and we will process the deletion of a user's account.


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by InformIT. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive: www.informit.com/u.aspx.

Sale of Personal Information

Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to NevadaDesignatedRequest@pearson.com.

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents

California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure

Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact

Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020