Friday, March 28, 2014

How do we find a CMMI consultant who shares our values?

Hey, CMMI Appraiser – three years ago, we decided to commit to performance improvement, company-wide. We started applying the rigors of the CMMI to our software, finance, product development, marketing and HR functions. We think we’ve done a pretty decent job, but before we schedule a SCAMPI Appraisal to test it, we want to find a CMMI consultant who shares our values. What are some of the criteria we should consider before hiring a CMMI consultant? ~ Fordham A.

Hey, Fordham,

Congratulations on your commitment to being a great company! Not many organizations come to us already understanding that the CMMI can improve performance across all areas of the business, not just software process improvement. Everything works better when it all works together. I applaud your innovative approach to business!

To help you identify the right fit for your unique business, here are my Top 10 Questions you should ask yourselves about every CMMI consultant you are considering:

  1. Does the CMMI consultant have the knowledge and content you value?
  2. Does the CMMI consultant have an established approach to doing business?
  3. Does the CMMI consultant understand your business and have a plan for helping you be successful?
  4. Does the CMMI consultant suggest practical, agile, incremental ways to make your company better?
  5. Does the CMMI consultant anticipate your needs?
  6. Is the CMMI consultant a creative problem-solver focused on you?
  7. Is the CMMI consultant professional and ethical at all times?
  8. Is the CMMI consultant fun and hassle-free to work with?
  9. Is the CMMI consultant primarily concerned with the real value of the CMMI, and not just the best way to achieve CMMI Level 2 and CMMI Level 3?
  10. Is the CMMI consultant focused on helping you set the right goals and objectives, and helping you ask the right questions?

As you know, Fordham, the CMMI provides a framework for changing behaviors and changing culture that can establish an environment for allowing you to operate like the great company you know you can be – for the long term. We call that the “path to greatness.” Having a CMMI consultant who shares your values can help you stay on the path to greatness, and achieving a Maturity Level of the CMMI will be just one byproduct of your journey.

Now that you know what you're looking for, you are on your way!

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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