The Capability Maturity Model (CMM)
The Capability Maturity Model (CMM) is a framework that lays out five maturity levels for continual process improvement. This framework is integral to most management systems that aim to improve the quality of development and delivery for all products and services.
The Five Maturity Levels
The five maturity levels define a scale for measuring the maturity of an organisation’s software process, and for evaluating and improving the capability of these processes.
Capability Maturity Model Integrated (CMMI)
CMMI is the successor to CMM and combines a number of maturity models into one integrated model. Developed by the Software Engineering Institute of Carnegie Mellon University, CMMI can be used to guide process improvement across a project, a division, or an entire organisation.
CMMI currently addresses three areas of interest:
- Product and service development – CMMI for Development (CMMI-DEV)
- Service establishment, management, and delivery – CMMI for Services (CMMI-SVC)
- Product and service acquisition – CMMI for Acquisition (CMMI-ACQ)
What is the difference between CMMI and CMM?
The difference between CMMI and CMM is that CMMI offers two representations of the maturity of the processes, while CMM only offers one. CMMI has a staged representation with five maturity levels, like the Software CMM, but also has a continuous model where each process area has its own maturity level.
An organisation cannot be certified in CMMI but can be appraised. With the traditional approach, the organisation establishes an Engineering Process Group and Process Action Teams. These members are trained in CMMI, and an informal appraisal is performed. The process areas are then prioritised for improvement.
Service Capability Maturity Model (CMM)
The original Capability Maturity Model (CMM) was originated to meet the needs of improving and managing the quality of the services in any organisation. Understanding the CMM model is fundamental to any long-term service improvement strategy.