Saturday, September 11, 2010

Some Appraisal Questions

  1. Why does the SEI ask for focus projects instead of all the projects done by the company?
  2. 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?
  3. Why do the appraisal results expire after 3 years?
  4. Why doesn't the SEI have compliance appraisals every 6 months or 1 year similar to ISO?
  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

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