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Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI)


CMMI is a process improvement approach that provides organizations with the essential elements of effective processes that ultimately improve their performance. CMMI can be used to guide process improvement across a project, a division, or an entire organization. It helps integrate traditionally separate organizational functions, set process improvement goals and priorities, provide guidance for quality processes, and provide a point of reference for appraising current processes.

CMMI V1.3 is the most recent version of CMMI, which was released November 1, 2010. Visit the CMMI Version 1.3 Information Center for more information.

The benefits you can expect from using CMMI include the following:

  • Your organization’s activities are explicitly linked to your business objectives.
  • Your visibility into the organization’s activities is increased to help you ensure that your product or service meets the customer’s expectations.
  • You learn from new areas of best practice (e.g., measurement, risk)

CMMI is being adopted worldwide, including North America, Europe, Asia, Australia, South America, and Africa. This kind of response has substantiated the SEI’s commitment to CMMI.

You can use CMMI in three different areas of interest:

CMMI models are collections of best practices that you can compare to your organization’s best practices and guide improvement to your processes. A formal comparison of a CMMI model to your processes is called an appraisal. The Standard CMMI Appraisal Method for Process Improvement (SCAMPI) incorporates the best ideas of several process improvement appraisal methods.


CMMI was developed by the CMMI project, which aimed to improve the usability of maturity models by integrating many different models into one framework. The project consisted of members of industry, government and the Carnegie Mellon Software Engineering Institute (SEI). The main sponsors included the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) and the National Defense Industrial Association..

CMMI is the successor of the capability maturity model (CMM) or software CMM. The CMM was developed from 1987 until 1997. In 2002, CMMI Version 1.1 was released, Version 1.2 followed in August 2006, and Version 1.3 in November 2010.

Maturity Levels

There are Five maturity levels. However, maturity level ratings are awarded for levels 2 through 5. Depending on the CMMI constellation (acquisition, services, development) used, the process areas it contains will vary. Key process areas are the areas that will be covered by the organization’s processes. Following list all the areas coverd by each maturity level:

Maturity Level 2 – Managed

  • CM – Configuration Management
  • MA – Measurement and Analysis
  • PMC – Project Monitoring and Control
  • PP – Project Planning
  • PPQA – Process and Product Quality Assurance
  • REQM – Requirements Management
  • SAM – Supplier Agreement Management

Maturity Level 3 – Defined

  • DAR – Decision Analysis and Resolution
  • IPM – Integrated Project Management +IPPD
  • OPD – Organizational Process Definition +IPPD
  • OPF – Organizational Process Focus
  • OT – Organizational Training
  • PI – Product Integration
  • RD – Requirements Development
  • RSKM – Risk Management
  • TS – Technical Solution
  • VAL – Validation
  • VER – Verification

Maturity Level 4 – Quantitatively Managed

  • QPM – Quantitative Project Management
  • OPP – Organizational Process Performance

Maturity Level 5 – Optimizing

  • CAR – Causal Analysis and Resolution
  • OID – Organizational Innovation and Deployment

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