Thursday, March 14, 2013

7 scary situations that CMMI can help you overcome

Hey CMMI Appraiser, the CMMI seems very mysterious and I’m worried it might actually hurt the way we do business. Why do companies choose to adopt the CMMI? ~ from a recent phone conversation 

Dear Readers,

The other day I spoke with a Quality Assurance Manager who said she was doing some research on engineering performance improvement methods and tools. From what she had gleaned from the so-called CMMI experts, the CMMI requires companies to fill out a lot of forms and document everything.  Worse, it forces everyone to all behave in exactly the same way, completely without creativity, and destroys the company culture. “The CMMI is a mystery to me,” she said. “Why do companies choose to adopt it?”

It sounded more like a horror movie to me!

I reassured my new friend that the CMMI is none of those things. It is intended as a tool to help you make your job environment much better. Spoiler alert! This is supposed to be fun.

So why do companies choose the CMMI? In my work as a CMMI Appraiser, I see the same seven scary situations that software and engineering professionals have overcome with the CMMI.  If you share their challenges, these are the advantages you are likely to receive:

  1. If you are having trouble with estimates, CMMI can help make your estimates better.
  2. If you are having trouble with late projects, CMMI can help improve predictability.
  3. If your bosses are micromanaging you, CMMI can give them more information to help them understand what is going on with projects.
  4. If you have a lot of tedious rework, CMMI can help avoid that by making sure the requirements are right when you get them, bringing clarity and validation to the process.
  5. If you have unhappy customers, CMMI can help put a framework in place that helps you manage their expectations.
  6. If you experience a lot of chaos in your business, CMMI can help you bring stability to that as well.
  7. If you are a great company but are struggling to define and scale the Way you do business, companywide, the CMMI can help.
For more information on how the CMMI can help solve common business problems, everyone is invited to check out our upcoming learning opportunities:

March 19, 2013, in Bedford, Massachusetts @ Boston SPIN – "Agile Resiliency: How CMMI Can Make Agile Thrive and Survive"

April 26, 2013, in Detroit, Michigan @ PMI Great Lakes 2013 Symposium – “Agile Resiliency” and "Process Innovation at the Speed of Life"

May 8, 2013, in Fairfax, Virginia, in partnership with CC Pace – "Agile CMMI Learning Day"

Like this blog? Forward to your nearest engineering or software exec!

Jeff Dalton is a Certified SCAMPI Lead Appraiser, Certified CMMI Instructor, author, and consultant with years of real-world experience with the CMMI in all types of organizations. Jeff has taught thousands of students in CMMI trainings and has received an aggregate satisfaction score of 4.97 out of 5 from his students.

Visit for more information about engineering strategy, performance innovation , software process improvement and running a successful CMMI program.

To download eBooks about CMMI, visit Jeff’s Author Page on Amazon.

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