Monday, November 1, 2010
Monday, September 13, 2010
- Most of them already have at least 40 High Maturity clients and at least 30 Maturity Level 3 clients. Will they have the capacity do lead the appraisal on time for my friend's company ( considering 12 SCAMPI appraisals per year per LA) ?
- Most of them deliver the consulting and training activities , which is 70 % of the contract value and sometimes they break the contracts and not deliver the SCAMPI, which is still highly profitable, since only 30 % value is lost, and no need to deal with High Maturity appraisal needs.
Sunday, September 12, 2010
Saturday, September 11, 2010
- Why does the SEI ask for focus projects instead of all the projects done by the company?
- Usually companies can select consultants and the Lead Appraiser (LA). Why is the SEI giving the right to chose the LA by the company or consultant?
- Why do the appraisal results expire after 3 years?
- Why doesn't the SEI have compliance appraisals every 6 months or 1 year similar to ISO?
- The SCAMPI method is a sampling method to determine the degree of institutionalization of the processes on the projects. Therefore the use of focus projects. For organizations where there are only 1 or 2 projects, then all of the projects are usually included in the appraisal scope. But for organizations with many projects, it would be prohibitive to evaluate all of the projects. That is why it is the responsibility of the Lead Appraiser to select the focus projects, along with input from the organization. The principle here is that if the processes are truly institutionalized throughout the organization, then it doesn’t matter which projects are selected for the appraisal. Any set of selected projects should be representative of how all projects in the organization behave.
- If I understand your statement, you are incorrect. The organization does select the CMMI consultant and Lead Appraiser. However, only SEI-certified Lead Appraisers are allowed to lead and report SCAMPI appraisal results. If a Lead Appraiser is NOT SEI-certified and he or she leads a SCAMPI appraisal, then the appraisal results are NOT valid.
- The appraisal results expire after three years because in the past many organizations tended to backslide in their process maturity after having their appraisal. The three year period is long enough to address the findings from the SCAMPI A appraisal and prepare for a re-appraisal at the same or higher Maturity Level. If there is no expiration date, then there could be less motivation to continue with Process Improvement.
- In addition, there is no such thing as a compliance appraisal at this time. There has been some discussion along these lines, but nothing has been settled. There is a fundamental difference between ISO audits and CMMI appraisals. ISO is a standard and the result of the audit is certification. CMMI is a set of guidelines for process improvement and the result is Maturity Level or Capability Level that is valid for three years.
Monday, August 2, 2010
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Friday, July 2, 2010
Thursday, July 1, 2010
- Provides the funding and senior management commitment for process improvement and the appraisal
- Does not serve on the appraisal team
- Meets at least once with the Lead Appraiser to discuss the appraisal
- Provides the business objectives for the organization
- Signs the Appraisal Input Document, Appraisal Plan, and Appraisal Disclosure Statement
- Attends the Opening Briefing to reinforce why the appraisal is being conducted and the importance of everyone to support the appraisal team
- Meet with the appraisal team before the Final Findings presentation to privately receive the results and prepare the proper message for the organization at the Final Findings Presentation
- Attend the Final Findings Presentation and at the conclusion of the presentation thank the appraisal team for their efforts and thank the organization for their efforts regardless of the outcome. If the results were bad news, turn it into a positive statement of encouragement, etc.
- Complete the feedback form in SAS for the appraisal results
- Receive the appraisal results and maintain the appraisal record for three years
- Do not publicly disclose the appraisal results until the SEI has completed its quality review and announced the results to the Lead Appraiser and appraisal sponsor
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
- Hire an SEI-certified Lead Appraiser to conduct a Gap Analysis of the company to determine the current process strengths and weaknesses and help the company construct a Process Improvement Plan (PIP).
- Obtain executive management sponsorship for the process improvement effort.
- Train the people responsible for the company’s processes and for addressing the action items in the PIP on the 3-day SEI Introduction to CMMI v1.2 class.
- Address the issues from the Gap Analysis, document the necessary processes and procedures, and begin conducting the PPQA process and work product audits.
- Allow time for the new and/or modified processes to get some use on various projects.
- Conduct a SCAMPI B appraisal as a dress rehearsal for the SCAMPI A. Identify any issues and weaknesses that are potential risks to achieving Maturity Level 2.
- Create a new PIP to address the SCAMPI B identified weaknesses and risks.
- Address these issues
- Conduct the Maturity Level 2 SCAMPI A appraisal.
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Using the CMMI-SVC to Transform an Organization into a High-Functioning, Customer-Driven Profit Center
As a company grows and matures from a startup entrepreneurial venture to a sustainable corporation, the departments and company services that begin as good ideas expand and evolve to support the company’s growing business. Many times these services simply develop without any strategic vision resulting in institutionalized behaviors that are incompatible with the company’s business goals and objectives. Consequently, the transition to a larger corporation becomes a challenge. A notable example is a company’s Engineering Services Department.
When people think of Engineering Services, the Customer Support or Help Desk team is what first comes to mind. However, other services such as Product Training, Field Services (product installation and troubleshooting), and Engineering Sales Support may be provided as well.
As a product development company begins selling product, the Customer Support function becomes one of its first service offerings whether or not it recognizes it as such. In addition, it is natural for the focus of the Customer Support function to be on pleasing their customer base, as many sales are contingent upon repeat business and word of mouth until the company and its product line become established in the marketplace. Nevertheless, without a clear idea of its charter and strategic direction to support business growth and identify new markets and service offerings, the Customer Support Specialists focus instead on supporting their customer base on non-company and non-product issues and questions that consume internal resources without any tangible benefit to the company. Once a company starts banging its head on the “glass ceiling” as it attempts to grow, the leadership may recognize that its current Engineering Services approach does not support its strategic business goals and objectives.
In these circumstances, the company is not necessarily interested in implementing the CMMI for Services (CMMI-SVC) and becoming appraised to either Maturity Level 2 or Maturity Level 3. However, by using the Continuous Representation, the CMMI-SVC can provide the needed guidance to help a company restructure and reorganize its Engineering Services approach in order to become a profit center or revenue generating function.
In this presentation, we will present a case study for OMNI Flow Computers, Inc., a company that specializes in the design, development, and manufacture of panel-mount multi-run, multi-tasking liquid and gas flow computers, and field-mount, hazardous area controllers/RTUs for liquid and gas custody transfer metering systems. The challenge facing OMNI was to develop its Engineering Services Department into a high-functioning, customer-driven profit center. OMNI’s Engineering Services Department consists of three groups: Customer Support, Training, and Engineering Field Services. Customer Support handles customer questions, concerns, and issues. The Training group provides training on the OMNI product line to its customers and users. Engineering Field Services provides on-site troubleshooting services on an as-needed basis.
As the Training and Engineering Field Services groups were recent additional capabilities, Customer Support presented the biggest obstacle to overcome. Noted management consultant Peter Drucker declared several years ago that Quality in a service or product is not what you put into it. It is what the client or customer gets out of it. Moreover, an obstacle to achieving this objective was one of the core challenges faced by the department: developing an appropriate customer focus and developing new service offerings. A major reason for these challenges is the nature of OMNI products. OMNI's customers integrate their products into custody transfer systems that involve a wide variety of large-scale hardware and electronic equipment from other manufacturers. OMNI’s customers usually develop and commission these systems for their clients and end users. Therefore, when calls come in to OMNI’s Customer Support group, the first challenge they had to overcome was determining if the customer’s issue was actually an OMNI product issue or the result of an external issue. The next challenge was to determine the root cause of the issue, so that the customer would receive a timely resolution of their issue.
Fortunately, the release of the CMMI-SVC came at the right time for OMNI. Of the seven new services Process Areas (PAs), many of the Specific Practices and associated informative material proved useful in guiding the transformation of OMNI’s Engineering Services Department. The Service Delivery PA provided excellent guidance for establishing and documenting Engineering Services’ existing service offerings, ensuring that each group was prepared to deliver the defined service offerings, and delivering the service offerings. The Incident Resolution and Prevention PA provided excellent guidance for identifying, documenting, tracking, reporting, and resolving customer complaints, issues, and other service interruptions. The Service Continuity PA helped focus the Engineering Services Department manager to identify and prioritize the department’s essential functions and necessary resources. The Strategic Service Management PA brought the needed focus to establish the Engineering Services strategic needs and plans for its standard services.
The OMNI Engineering Services Department’s journey is not yet over. They are still growing, maturing, and learning what it means to become a high-functioning customer-driven profit center. However, along the way they learned some valuable lessons. This presentation will discuss some of the pitfalls they encountered, what strategies worked and what did not work, as well as provide some practical advice to aid other organizations facing similar challenges.
If you make customers unhappy in the physical world, they might each tell six friends. If you make customers unhappy on the Internet, they can each tell 6000 friends. - Jeff Bezos
Customer service is not a department. It is an attitude. – Unknown
This presentation provides a case study of a computer manufacturer that used the CMMI for Services to help transform its Engineering Services department (Customer Support, Training, and Engineering Field Services groups) into a high-functioning, customer-driven profit center. Challenges, successful approaches, lessons learned, and practical advice to aid other organizations facing similar challenges will be presented.
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Sunday, April 11, 2010
Saturday, April 10, 2010
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Thursday, March 25, 2010
Sunday, March 21, 2010
Friday, March 19, 2010
Monday, March 8, 2010
Sunday, March 7, 2010
Friday, February 26, 2010
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
We have a Project management process defined for covering Project Planning (PP) and Project Monitoring and Control (PMC). It includes a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) (task effort size must be about 20 hours), estimation process, assigned resources, etc. We are using MS-Project for tracking the schedule, and each month there is an Excel report with a project status summary.People think it is very heavy to track the all of the fine-grained tasks in MS-Project. They would prefer tracking the project through milestones in Excel.I’ve heard about using the burn down chart in Scrum, and I know some organizations use agility within CMMI model.It is possible to do that? Could we be more “agile”?The short answer is yes. The CMMI does NOT prescribe any project management tool or level of tracking. These decisions are left up to the organization to make. Sounds like what you need is a process that fits your organization. If people are complaining that the tracking process is too cumbersome to use, then you should definitely examine other methods. Take a top down approach from the business goals and objectives. What project tracking information does a project manager need in order to determine if the business goals and objectives are being met? Once you answer this question, that will help you decide the proper level of project tracking and monitoring. If you are still having difficulty figuring out the best method, work with a CMMI consultant to help you define a process that will be the best fit for your organization.
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
During appraisals it has been noted that most of the time we are relying on expert knowledge to determine effort and cost rather than estimating the sizing attributes. Just using expert knowledge makes it difficult to improve our effort estimation, hence having a dedicated set of attributes is essential in order for us to improve our estimations. We have evaluated some comprehensive methods (e.g. Function Points), but these are not considered as beneficial to our projects. We are now looking for an approach that allows us to improve our estimates with a simpler method which could then be refined based on our needs. Would you please give me advice how to tackle this challenge?
What PP SP 1.2 is looking for is the Basis of Estimate for the work product. If you are estimating a document for example, what aspects or attributes of the document can you estimate that when combined with a productivity factor will yield effort and cost? You determine these attributes by analyzing the historical data from your organization’s past projects. So based on the project’s requirements, you could estimate the number of pages that would be written for a document, the number of figures or drawings that need to be created or modified, etc. These items are then sizing parameters.
For source code, you need to analyze historical data from past projects to give an empirical estimate. As you say, function points are comprehensive. A simpler method may be to classify your software requirements in categories such as interface requirements, display requirements, processing requirements, reporting requirements, etc. and then using your historical data determine the correlations between these requirements categories and code size. Many organizations start with this simple kind of estimation/prediction model and continually refine it by incorporating data from each new project until a fairly accurate estimation model emerges. This estimation model is then very specific to the organization and type of software development it performs.
Hope these ideas help.
Thursday, February 4, 2010
I'm responsible for coordinating CMMI ML2 implementation in my organization. For PPQA GP 2.9 "Objectively evaluate adherence of the process against its process description, standards, and procedures, and address noncompliance" who can be an internal auditor of my organization?
And about tools and forms for this evaluation: Could I elaborate a checklist for this evaluation? Do you have any examples of this?
An objective evaluation implies some independence from the people performing the process activities. That means the people who perform the PPQA activities do not evaluate their own work. Organizations perform GP 2.9 of PPQA in a variety of ways.
1. Someone else in the organization who is not performing the PPQA audits of REQM, PP, PMC, etc. audits the PPQA activities
2. If the company is large and has several divisions, someone who performs the PPQA activities in another division audits the PPQA activities in your division
3. An external auditor (e.g., ISO 9000) audits the PPQA activities
4. An external consultant audits the PPQA activities
5. If your company is a government supplier, then the government may be auditing the PPQA activities
So in your case, you could use an internal auditor to audit the PPQA activities as long as that person is not auditing his or her own work.
As far as a checklist, that needs to be developed by the person who is auditing the PPQA activities, just like the PPQA audits develop the checklists for the other Process Areas. The checklists need to cover both a process audit and a work product audit, and it may be easier to have two checklists instead of one. The checklist needs to be based on your documented PPQA process and process assets, not the CMMI.
If you are having difficulty understanding how to write a checklist, then I strongly encourage you and your organization to have someone come and train you how to perform PPQA audits. It is very important to conduct these properly; otherwise you could face difficulties with your process improvement efforts.