Capability is the backbone of an organization. The lack of organizational capability can lead to cost overruns, missed or close deadlines, poor morale, quality problems, customer complaints, and the inability to repeat previous success. But while organizational leaders recognize the need for capability improvement—according to a McKinsey & Company survey, executives view capability building as a top three strategic priority1—they often don’t know how to address their need.
CMMI, or Capability Maturity Model Integration, provides a solution to increasing capability gaps. Proven effective in organizations and governments globally over the last 25 years, CMMI consists of collected best practices designed to promote the behaviors that lead to improved performance in any organization. CMMI’s pathway to capability improvement can be customized with 3 models for different environments:
- CMMI for Development: Build capability when engineering or developing products and services.
- CMMI for Acquisition: Build capability when acquiring products and services.
- CMMI for Services: Build capability when providing services.
These models provide a framework for developing, improving and sustaining business performance in your environment. They enable you to determine if your current way of doing things is working, if you’re improving, and they lead you toward greater continuous improvement.
CMMI Maturity Levels
A key component to capability improvement is CMMI’s maturity levels. Maturity levels provide a rigorous benchmark rating method that enables you to compare your organization's capability to its competitors, its industry and itself over time. CMMI provides 5 maturity levels that demonstrate a visible path for improvement: Initial, Managed, Defined, Quantitatively Managed and Optimizing.
As an organization advances its capabilities, it can expect to achieve a higher maturity level by identifying areas of improvement, working to correct these areas and integrating these solutions across its organization. High-maturity organizations have both lower risk and increased quality. The higher the organization’s maturity, the better its performance. By achieving a high CMMI maturity level, an organization demonstrates a deeper commitment to improving capabilities using statistical and other quantitative methods. A focus on continuous improvement means that high-maturity organizations are constantly evolving, adapting and growing to meet the needs of stakeholders and customers.
CMMI Around the World
Thousands of organizations have implemented CMMI; in 2015 alone, more than 1,900 high-performing organizations earned a CMMI maturity level rating. By implementing CMMI and communicating their maturity level to stakeholders, organizations highlight their capability and commitment to excellence.
CMMI has been implemented in 101 countries around the world, with 11 governments investing in CMMI to support economic development in their countries. For over 25 years, high-performing organizations in a variety of industries, including aerospace, finance, health care, software, defense, transportation and telecommunications, have earned a CMMI maturity level rating and proved they are capable business partners and suppliers.
In early 2016, ISACA acquired CMMI® Institute. ISACA and CMMI Institute share a vision for advancing organizational performance that centers on driving excellence in the IT, information systems governance, data management governance, software, and systems engineering functions in organizations across a spectrum of industries.
Learn about organizations who have implemented CMMI to improve their capability: http://cmmiinstitute.com/who-uses-cmmi
Ready to dive in? Download a model to get started:
For a deeper dive, the CMMI Institute offers several training courses and certification options. Elect for onsite training or take the online introductory Fundamentals of CMMI Elearning course from the comfort of your own home or office. Learn more about your CMMI training and certification options: http://cmmiinstitute.com/grow-your-career.
About CMMI Institute
CMMI Institute is the global leader in the advancement of best practices in people, process and technology. The Institute provides the tools and support for organizations to benchmark their capabilities and build maturity by comparing their operations to best practices and identifying performance gaps. Learn more: http://cmmiinstitute.com/.
Editor’s note: ISACA will be hosting a free webinar on the topic, ISACA Presents: Building Capability with CMMI, Wednesday, 17 August 2016, 12PM (EDT) / 11AM (CDT) / 9AM (PDT) / 16:00 (UTC).
1 McKinsey & Company, “Building Capabilities for Performance,” 2014