Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI)

Definition of CMMI 

The Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) is a process model that guides organizations to improve processes, boosts productivity and efficient behaviours during a project, product or service development which results in risk reduction. The DoD and U.S. Government developed CMMI at Software Engineering Institute, Carnegie Mellon University. It was developed as a process enhancement tool. The CMMI is both behavioural and process model which is designed to help organization throughout product and service development. It sets a measurable benchmark for organizations to assess level of development at a particular stage.  

 CMMI Goals 

The objective of CMMI is to enhance the quality of the product/service by following a standard model which fulfils customer expectations as well as increases the value of the organization in market. It appraises the reputation of the organization and value of stockholders in the industry. 

CMMI Representation 

There are two types of CMMI representation that allows an organization to pursue a different set of improvement goals. First is Staged representation, which uses a pre-set process to create an improvement path. Improvement path is ascertained by maturity levels. Whereas, the other one which is Continuous representation focuses on specific process area. It uses capability levels to assess and improve the development of a particular process area. 

CMMI – Maturity Levels  

According to the CMMI model organizational process maturity is divided into five levels. Once businesses reach the maturity level they must focus on maintenance and regular progresses. Maturity levels of CMMI are: 

  • Maturity Level 1: Initial
    Processes are being conceptualized at this stage. 
  • Maturity Level 2: Managed
    Projects are planned, implemented, measured and monitored at this level. 
  • Maturity Level 3: Defined
    The main focus of this level is defining standard of the project.  
  • Maturity Level 4: Quantitatively managed
    At this level project is in controlled position, processes offer high quality results with minimum risk involved. 
  • Maturity Level 5: Optimizing:
    Processes are steady and flexible at this level. Organization optimize resources at this stage for continuous improvement.  

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CMMI – Capability Levels 

Apart from maturity levels, The CMMI has capability levels that are utilized to evaluate an organization’s performance and process development related to a specific process area. The capability levels are mentioned as below: 

  • Capability Level 0: Incomplete
    Process is incomplete, goals are not set and standards are not met at this capability level. 
  • Capability Level 1: Initial
    At this level performance issues regarding a particular process area are addressed. 
  • Capability Level 2: Managed
    During this level, improvements in the process area become more visible. 
  • Capability Level 3: Defined
    At this level organizational standards are followed and process standardization is prioritized. 
  • Capability Level 4: Quantitatively Managed 
    Process is being monitored using statistics and quantitative techniques. 
  • Capability Level 5: Optimizing
    At this level, organization focus on continuous improvement of the process.  

Organizations adopt CMMI to achieve specific set of business goals. The newest version of CMMI, Version 2.0, emphases deeply on performance, performance requirements and how it influences organization. CMMI can be practiced by individuals, instructors, appraisers and practitioners certified by CMMI institute only.

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