CMMI – what it is and how to use it in IT management

CMMI – what it is and how to use it in IT management

Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI) is a model broadly used around the world. It assesses and improves the processes of an organization or department, such as IT management. It can be used to enhance results, avoid bottlenecks, and solve problems.

It is considered a standard of excellence in process management, used in various departments, including information technology. However, for proper application of this method to help achieve better results, you should learn about how this model works and its benefits.

Read this article to know more about CMMI and improve your IT management!

What is CMMI and how was it created?

CMMI, or Capability Maturity Model Integration, is a model to improve processes of companies, departments, organizations, and teams. Companies use the models to analyze, adjust, standardize processes, and implement solutions.

It was developed by the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) at Carnegie Mellon University, located in Pittsburgh, in the United States. It helps companies and teams evaluate and improve their software development processes, and can be used in other departments as well.

In the 1980s, the United States Department of Defense wanted to improve the quality and efficiency of its software projects, then SEI was hired to develop a model that could evaluate the maturity of software processes, leading to the creation of CMMI.

Key benefits of CMMI

Now that you know what CMMI means, it’s time to learn more about its key benefits.

  • Reliable estimates of timelines

The adoption of CMMI allows more structured and standardized processes according to management needs, allowing easier and more accurate estimates of timelines for specific procedures.

Therefore, it reduces delays and improves IT management, because an important aspect for proper planning is an adequate estimate of deadlines for each phase of a process.

  • Optimized software production

Another advantage of adopting CMMI is the optimization of software production management. The model ensures that each stage of this activity is conducted efficiently, according to the expectations of managers.

CMMI can define requirements for procedures, perform software testing, and ensure that everything is all right across the timeline.

4. High-quality software development

With CMMI, the IT department will be able to develop high-quality software, because this model improves standardization and efficiency in software development procedures, ensuring the entire process is checked and validated, leading to better results.

5. Continuous improvement

All these advantages are also linked with an important characteristic of CMMI: the possibility of seeking continuous improvement, which can be applied to software development and improvement processes.

The software development process is constantly evaluated. Then, with CMMI, it is possible to detect bottlenecks, understand where problems are happening, and eliminate faults in the procedure.

CMMI domain views

CMMI version 2.2 has three models, which are also known as domain views, which are as described below:

  • Development V2.0 (CMMI-DEV) to improve processes and performance for developing better products and services;
  • Services V2.0 (CMMI-SVC) to improve capabilities and processes for providing better service performance;
  • Supplier Management V2.0 (CMMI-SPM) to improve processes and performance for optimizing the supply chain.

CMMI maturity levels

CMMI maturity levels refer to the staged path for a company or department towards its goals of performance and process improvement.

See below a brief description of these maturity levels:

  • Initial

It refers to maturity level 1. A company’s processes are unpredictable and reactive, contrary to expected procedures.

Therefore, there is no predictability in deadlines and costs, which can cause financial problems and significant delays in process management.

  • Managed

This is maturity level 2 and refers to work managed at the project level. It means that every IT project is planned and controlled, with a certain degree of reliability.

  • Defined

Here, work is no longer managed at the project level, with definition of process standards for all IT management, integrating different projects and ensuring more transparency across the organization.

  • Quantitatively managed

At this level, IT management presents high maturity. The department uses statistical analysis and quantitative data to improve procedures and collect information to improve results.

  • Optimizing

Finally, there is the optimizing maturity level. At this stage, management is focused on continuous improvement based on data collected from software development processes, allowing more flexible procedures that can be adapted to new demands and growth opportunities.

Here, software development processes are standardized and stable, with minimized errors and bottlenecks and easy estimates of results.

How can CMMI help improve software quality?

As you have seen, CMMI can offer several benefits to IT management, such as improved quality of software development. But how does it happen?

First, remember that it promotes process standardization. It doesn’t mean all software applications will be the same and have the same functionalities. The idea of standardization is to offer workflows with defined steps and good quality control.

In addition to improving productivity and process efficiency, such standardization promotes high-quality software. After all, the workflow is already planned, allowing developers to identify problems during software development and review the procedure.

The quality control promoted by CMMI also allows efficient requirements management. In other words, during the processes, the staff can ensure documented processes and efficient quality control to minimize problems and maximize quality.

CMMI can improve processes in general, which can also lead to better software quality, as developers can evaluate, classify, and improve the entire procedure of software development.

This article explained what CMMI is, how it works, and its key benefits, but it’s important to learn how to apply it correctly so your IT management can be optimized to offer better results.

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