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A critical factor in work group coordination, communication has been studied extensively. Yet, we are missing objective evidence of the relationship between successful coordination outcome and communication structures. Using data from IBM's Jazztrade project, we study communication structures of development teams with high coordination needs. We conceptualize coordination outcome by the result of their code integration build processes (successful or failed) and study team communication structures with social network measures. Our results indicate that developer communication plays an important role in the quality of software integrations. Although we found that no individual measure could indicate whether a build will fail or succeed, we leveraged the combination of communication structure measures into a predictive model that indicates whether an integration will fail. When used for five project teams, our predictive model yielded recall values between 55% and 75%, and precision values between 50% to 76%.
Date of Conference: 16-24 May 2009