Friday, August 29, 2008

What is Meant by a Line of Business?

In a CMMI 1.2 Appraisal there is a requirement that practices in projects and functions within the Organisational Unit must be understood and identified ( e.g. Lines of Business, Disciplines, Effort Types, Project Types etc). What do lines of Business and Effort Types mean?

It might be easier to understand the concept of a LIne of Business through an illustrative example.

A small organization would normally produce one type of product, say a voice recognition software package. This package may be installed on a variety of platforms, but it is the same package. In this situation the company or organization has one Line of Business.

In a large company or corporation, there usually is a number of different types of products produced for different purposes, customer types, etc. For example, an automotive company may have several divisions: car, truck, van, commercial vehicle, etc. Each division represents a different Line of Business. Or a financial company may have several divisions: banking, insurance, investments, etc. Again, each division is a different Line of Business. Typically each Line of Business has different goals and objectives, customers, processes, etc. Another example of a Line of Business is the application domain. It is important to note the different Lines of Business because it is extremely challenging, if not impossible, to conduct a single SCAMPI A appraisal across multiple Lines of Business, especially for Maturity Level 3 and up.

If you read the Method Description Document section 1.1.3 Implementation Guidance, it defines the terms you are asking about:

  • application domains (or lines of business)
  • geographical breadth
  • disciplines (e.g., systems engineering, software engineering, or hardware engineering)
  • effort types (e.g., development, maintenance, or services)
  • project types (e.g., legacy or new development)
  • customer types (e.g., commercial or government agency)
  • lifecycle models in use within the organization (e.g., spiral, evolutionary, waterfall, or incremental)

So effort type refers to the type of work: new development, sustaining engineering or maintenance, or services.

No comments: