The Capability Maturity Models Integration and It System and Service Acquisition Projects

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The Capability Maturity Models Integration and IT System and Service Acquisition Projects Han Reichgelt School of Computing and Software Engineering Southern Polytechnic State Unversity Overview The purpose of this document is to provide a guide to the Capability Maturity Model Integration for Acquisition (CMMI-ACQ) and the guidebook on using the Capability Maturity Model Integration for Development (CMMI-DEV) in IT system and service acquisition projects. It will provide some general background on CMMI and the rationale behind the models, discuss the structure of the CMMI models, and provide more detailed guidelines on how to read the CMMI-ACQ document and the guidebook on using CMMI-DEV for acquisition. This is a high level document that is intended merely as a guide. It provides pointers to the relevant literature and material, but does not discuss the material in depth. In other words, it cannot, and is not intended to, substitute for the actual material itself. The document relies heavily on the CMMI-ACQ document and quotes extensively from it. Unless otherwise indicated, each phrase or sentence in quotation marks is taken from the CMMI-ACQ document.

Background
CMMI is the culmination of an effort that started in the mid 1980s. CMMI was developed under the leadership of the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) at Carnegie Mellon University. More details about SEI can be found at www.sei.cmu.edu. The primary impetus for the development of CMMI was provided by the US Department of Defense, which had become concerned about the problems that it has consistently run into in software development projects. Software tended to be delivered late, over budget and/or lacking at least some of the expected functionality. Moreover, the US Department of Defense was not alone in its concerns. For example, the Standish group (www.standishgroup.com) published its so-called Chaos report in 1984 (http://net.educause.edu/ir/library/pdf/NCP08083B.pdf) in which it reported that, according to IT executive managers, only 16.2% of IT projects were successful. Although success rates have since improved marginally, the failure rate of IT projects remains depressingly low. Some of the Standish findings are discussed in the model on the acquisition phase and in particular in the material on Requirements Engineering. In trying to improve the success rate of software development projects, SEI turned to quality improvement approaches that had proven successful in other industries, in particular manufacturing. The work by quality improvement pioneers as Shewhart, 1

Demming, Crosby and Juran has led to the now widely accepted premise that the quality of a product or service is highly influenced by the quality of the processes used to develop and maintain the product of service. It is worth pointing that in this context “quality” is defined as “fitness for purpose” or “fitness for use”, not as superiority of some kind. This premise that the quality of a product or service depends on the quality of the processes used to produce or maintain is underlies virtually all modern approaches to quality enhancement, whether it be the standards formulated for a range of industries by the International Standards Organization (ISO, www.iso.org), the approach advocated by Six Sigma (www.isixsigma.com, for a discussion on the relationship between Six Sigma and CMMI see http://www.sei.cmu.edu/publications/documents/05.reports/05tn005.html) or indeed the approach to improving IT service delivery embedded in ITIL, one of the main topics in the companion course IT6413 – IT Service Delivery. Older versions of CMMI were known as CMM (Capability Maturity Model) and one will occasional references to CMM in the literature. While it is easy to see the relationship between CMM and CMMI, CMM was officially retired in 2001 or thereabouts and is no longer maintained. Also, while CMMI models were initially exclusively focused on software engineering, more recently SEI has also...
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