Interpreting the CMMI (R): A Process Improvement Approach, Second Edition, 2nd Edition (Hardback) book cover

Interpreting the CMMI (R)

A Process Improvement Approach, Second Edition, 2nd Edition

By Margaret K. Kulpa, Kent A. Johnson

Auerbach Publications

424 pages | 72 B/W Illus.

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Written by experienced process improvement professionals who have developed and implemented computer based systems in organizations around the world, Interpreting the CMMI®: A Process Improvement Approach, Second Edition provides you with specific techniques for performing process improvement.

Employing everyday language and supported by real world examples, the authors describe the fundamental concepts of the CMMI model, covering goals, practices, architecture, and definitions, and provide a structured approach for implementing the concepts of the CMMI into any organization. They discuss getting started in the process improvement effort, as well as how to continue on to high maturity. They walk you through the myriad of charts and graphs involved in statistical process control and offer practical recommendations. They also provide information on blending different process improvement initiatives into organizational programs (including agile development), and in this edition include more in-depth information.

The authors distill the knowledge gained in their combined 70 years of experience in project management, software engineering, systems engineering, metrics, quality assurance, appraisals, training, process improvement, and team building. Whether you are new to process improvement or an experienced professional, this volume will save you time wasted on false starts, false promises by marketers, and failed deadlines.

The authors have been responsible for successfully implementing process improvement in several different organizations. This book is based on real-life experience, not on academic theories. It provides workable solutions to inherent challenges such as appropriate roles and responsibility, resistance to change, and meaningful documentation, thus transforming CMMI concepts into practical applications.

Table of Contents

Section I: Introduction


What is the CMMI®?

Why Did We Write This Book?

How to Read This Book

Why use CMMI?

Family of CMMs


History of the CMMI

Assessment View versus Improvement View

Changes from CMMI Version 1.1 to CMMI Version 1.2

Changes to Our Book, Interpreting the CMMI, from First Edition to

Second Edition

Beginning the Journey


What is Process Improvement?

What is a Process?


Business Goals and Objectives


Structure of the CMMI

Terms and Definitions

CMMI Model Structure

Model Structure for the Staged Representation

Maturity Levels

Process Areas (PAs)

Goals 33


Relationship between Goals and Practices

Model Structure for the Continuous Representation

Process Management

Project Management



Goals and Practices

Generic Goals and Practices

Target Profile

Target Staging

Achievement Profile

Capability Level Profile

Other Components

Required, Expected, and Informative Components

CMMI Representations

The Staged Representation

Maturity Level 1—Initial

Maturity Level 2—Managed

Maturity Level 3—Defined

Maturity Level 4—Quantitatively Managed

Maturity Level 5—Optimizing

The Continuous Representation

Capability Level 0: Incomplete

Capability Level 1: Performed

Capability Level 2: Managed

Capability Level 3: Defined

Capability Level 4: Quantitatively Managed

Capability Level 5: Optimizing

Which One Should I Use?

It Depends

Our Mandate

Section II: CMMI Process Areas

Understanding Maturity Level 2: Managed

Moving from Level 1 to Level 2

The Process Areas for Maturity Level 2: Managed

Requirements Management

Project Planning

Project Monitoring and Control

Supplier Agreement Management

Measurement and Analysis

Process and Product Quality Assurance

Configuration Management

Understanding Maturity Level 3: Defined

Moving from Level 2 to Level 3

Process Areas for the Maturity Level 3: Defined

Requirements Development

Technical Solution

Product Integration



Organizational Process Focus

Organizational Process Definition + IPPD

Organizational Training

Integrated Project Management + IPPD

Risk Management

Decision Analysis and Resolution

Understanding Maturity Level 4: Quantitatively Managed

Moving from Level 3 to Level 4

The Process Areas for Maturity Level 4: Quantitatively Managed

Organizational Process Performance

Quantitative Project Management

Understanding Maturity Level 5: Optimizing

Moving from Level 4 to Level 5

The Process Areas for Maturity Level 5: Optimizing

Organizational Innovation and Deployment

Causal Analysis and Resolution

Section III: Implementation

Alignment of Multiple Process Improvement Initiatives

Process Improvement Team Structure

Integration of Existing Polices, Processes, and Procedures

Collect and Review the Policies, Processes, and Procedures

Examine the Interfaces

Review the Roles

Consider Life Cycles

Consider the Level of Detail

Consider the Format

Measurement Programs

Collect and Review the Related Documentation

Collect Examples of Measures Presented to Management

Identify All the Groups (or Individuals) with Measurement


Identify How the Measures Are Being Collected

Create a Measurement Log

Training Programs

Identify Which Training Programs Are in Scope

Identify All Sources of Training

Identify and Collect All Training Plans and Schedule

Identify All Training Courses


Scenario One: Merged Teams

Scenario Two: Separate but Equal

Is CMMI Right for Small Organizations?


Systems Engineering

Software Engineering

Integrated Product and Process Development


The Staged Representation (The Architecture in Use by the

Software CMM)

The Continuous Representation (The Architecture in Use by the

Systems Engineering Models)

Maturity Levels

Capability Levels


Small Organizations


Establishing Your Process Improvement Organization

Set Up


The Design Phase

The Pilot Phase

Select the Pilot Project(s)

Document the Success Criteria

Train Pilot Participants

Monitor the Pilot Efforts

Refine Policies/Procedures Based on Pilot Results

After the Pilots

The Implementation Phase

Monitoring the Process Improvement Effort

Sample Process Improvement Program

ABC Corporation Process Improvement (PI) Program

Different Approaches for Process Improvement

The Traditional Approach to PI.

An Alternate Approach

People, Roles, and Responsibilities

Process Improvement Champions, Sponsors, and Groups

Engineering Process Group (EPG)

Process Action Teams (PATs)

Training for PI Members

EPG and PAT Member Qualifications

Conducting Meetings

Quality Assurance (QA) and the EPG

Documentation Guidelines



Process Definition Approaches

Identify Workshop Parameters

Prepare Workshop Activities and Materials

Manage Workshop Logistics

Facilitate Workshops

Document Workshop Outcomes

Analyze Workshop Findings

Planning and Tracking the Effort

Defining Plans

The PI Plan

Implementation/Operations Plan

Action Plans

Communications Plans

Tracking the Documentation

Defining Processes, Procedures, Policies, and Charters

Defining Processes

Activity Entry Criteria

Activity Exit Criteria

Activity Input Criteria

Activity Output Criteria

Activity Performed By

What Activity Comes Next?

Defining Procedures

Defining Policies


Section IV: Measurement

Measurement within the CMMI

The Measurement and Analysis Process Area

The Engineering Process Areas

The CMMI Measurement Focus

Evolution of Measurement

A Boatload of Metrics


Selecting Metrics for Your Organization

List of Metrics

Level 2

Requirements Management

Project Planning

Project Monitoring and Control

Measurement and Analysis

Supplier Agreement Management

Process and Product Quality Assurance (QA)

Configuration Management (CM)

Level 3

Requirements Development

Technical Solution

Product Integration



Organizational Process Focus

Organizational Process Definition + IPPD

Organizational Training

Integrated Project Management + IPPD

Risk Management

Decision Analysis and Resolution

Level 4

Organizational Process Performance

Quantitative Project Management

Level 5

Organizational Innovation and Deployment

Causal Analysis and Resolution

Questions to Ask When Generating and Reviewing Metrics

Planning the Metrics Process

Some Problems You May Encounter


Recommendations to Improve the Metrics Identification and

Collection Process Itself

Recommendations to Improve Actual Performance on Projects

Statistical Process Control

Background Information

Seven Common Tools

Check Sheet

Run Chart


Pareto Chart

Scatter Diagram/Chart

Cause and Effect/Fishbone Diagram

Control Chart

Representing and Reporting Data

The Tyranny of Control Charts

Individuals and Moving Range Control Chart (XmR)

Computing Limits for the XmR Chart

Hints on How to Read the Charts



A High-Maturity Perspective

So How Do You Use a PPB with Your Projects

Process Performance Model

PPB Elements (Lines 1–10)

Historical Effort Distribution (Line 12)


Actuals by Phase (Line 18)

Prediction Based on Actual When Available or Best Estimate

(Line 20)

Transitioning to Level 4

Select the Measures That Will Be the Basis for Your PPBs and


Collect the Measures Identified from the Projects

Analyze the Data from the Projects

Establish Organizational PPBs and PPMs from the Project Data

Derive Project Goals

Select Critical Subprocesses to be Managed by the Project

Select the Process Performance Baselines to be Used by the


Select the Process Performance Model(s) to be Used by the


Manage the Project Quantitatively

Start Early to Level 4

Transitioning to Level 5

Create an Organizational Group Responsible for the Collection

of Improvement Suggestions for Both Process and


Establish a Well-Defined Process for Improvement Proposals

Establish Process Improvement Goals

Clearly Communicate Process Improvement Activities and

Goals to the Staff

Section V: Appraisals

Appraisals Using the CMMI


SCAMPI Fundamentals

Non-Process Improvement Appraisals

Appraisal Classes

Which Class Appraisal Method Should I Use

Using SCAMPI A in the Field

Additional Requirements for High Maturity SCAMPI A Appraisals

Reusing Previous Appraisal Results

Frequently Asked Questions for Planning and Conducting a


The SCAMPI A Approach

Our Perspective

What Is a SCAMPI A Appraisal?

Plan and Prepare for Appraisal Phase

Analyze Requirements Process

Develop the Appraisal Plan Process

Select and Prepare the Team Process

Obtain and Inventory Initial Objective Evidence Process

Prepare for Appraisal Conduct Process

Conduct Appraisal Phase

Prepare Participants Process

Examine and Verify Objective Evidence Processes

Validate Preliminary Findings Process

Generate Appraisal Results Process

Report Results Phase

Deliver Appraisal Results Process

Package and Archive Appraisal Assets Process

Those Damn PIIDs!

What ARE PIIDS and Why Must I Use Them?

What Do the PIIDs Look Like?

So Why Do PIIDs Take So Much Time?

How Can I Screw Up a PIID?

Data Consolidation Worksheets

Section VI: Odds and Ends

Agile and the CMMI

What is Agile?

Agile Methods

What is Scrum?

Complementary Approaches

How CMMI Can Be Used with Agile

Establish and Maintain an Organizational Policy for Planning

and Performing Agile Methods (GP 2.1)

Establish and Maintain the Plan for Performing Agile Methods (GP 2.2)

Provide Adequate Resources for Performing Agile Methods (GP 2.3)

Assign Responsibility and Authority for Performing Agile

Methods (GP 2.4)

Train the People Performing Agile Methods (GP 2.5)

Place Designated Work Products under Appropriate Level of

Configuration Management (GP 2.6)

Identify and Involve the Relevant Stakeholders as Planned (GP2.7)

Monitor and Control Agile Methods Against the Plan and Take

Appropriate Corrective Action (GP 2.8)

Objectively Evaluate Adherence to the Agile Methods and

Address Noncompliance (GP2.9)

Review the Activities, Status, and Results of the Agile Methods with Higher-Level Management and Resolve Issues (GP2.10)

Establish and Maintain the Description of Agile Methods (GP3.1)

Collect the Results from Using Agile Methods to Support

Future Use and Improve the Organization’s Approach to

Agile Methods (GP 3.2)

Using Agile in High-Maturity Organizations

Agile Approach to Process Improvement and SCAMPI

Closing Thoughts

Process Improvement Invades Your Life

Change Management

Rewards and Punishment

Management Commitment

Quality Assurance Is the Key

CMMI Perspective

References and Further Reading

Section VII: Appendices

Appendix A: Comparing CBI-IPI to SCE to SCAMPI

Appendix B: Myths and Legends of the CMMI

Appendix C: Checklists for Pilot Projects

Appendix D: Organizational In-Brief to SCAMPI Team


Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Quality Control
COMPUTERS / Information Technology
COMPUTERS / Software Development & Engineering / General