Successful Process Management compliant to CMMI

Challenge

The customer is an international corporation based in the US. In its core market Aerospace & Defense, the company is locked into strict specifications which require compliance to AS91100C/D, DO-178C, DO-254 and many other standards and regulations. Additionally, the company is overseen and approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). To continue ensuring high product quality and strong focus on software excellence, the organization set itself the goal of reaching CMMI Level 5. The organization administered its engineering processes in over 500 different statistical pdf documents and was only able to ensure consistency and quality with extremely high effort. Furthermore, knowledge islands in diverse media platforms (intranet, Wiki, Visio, etc.) contained product-specific information. Engineers had difficulty in finding process documentations relevant for them.

Duration of the project

About 3 years

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Solution

To reach CMMI Level 5 and increase efficiency within the organization, the customer decided to use the process management tool Stages. Together with Method Park experts, the organization created modular process architecture which is divided into three levels: standard, product line and program/project. Each level can, if needed, be subdivided into further layers. With process modules in Stages, over 200 authors are able to simultaneously implement process changes where needed and quickly pass them on to superior process levels. Each process change will go into review – its depth depending on the criticality of change.


For process tailoring, a key performance indicator-based approach was applied, with which the organization can detect those processes which are often changed by product lines or programs and projects (“Tailoring Heatmap”). With this approach, the organization is now able to targeted improve these processes.
The business-critical standard compliance in the aerospace sector, is ensured by mapping processes on CMMI, DO-178C, DO-254 and AS9100C/D and 15 further models. With elaborated trace reports, internal auditors and assessors are able to detect and fix gaps before they develop into a potential external problem.


With skillfully connected IT systems, the customer was able to entirely eliminate manual overhead burden to new end users. This significantly eased the rollout of the new process landscape to over 8,000 engineers. There are, on average, 15 new end users each day. Single-sign-on now minimizes the hurdle to access processes: new end users can find relevant processes and roles or phase specific features easy and quick and can so efficiently apply processes.

 

Solution

Modular process architecture

Key figure-based approach for process tailoring

Trace reports

Integrated connection of IT systems

More Information

Stages

Benefit

With new process management and the introduction of modular process architecture, the organization reached its goal of reaching CMMI Level 5. Additionally, the company is now able to ensure compliance to the quality standard AS9100D of 2016. Project teams made huge progress internally, too: Processing times for process changes reduced and processes are effectively applied in programs and projects. This is demonstrated by the high feedback rate of end users.

Benefit 

Reaching CMMI Level 5, approved in a SCAMPI A assessment

Easy change from AS9100C to AS9100D

Significant reduction of processing times for process changes

Active application of processes in programs and projects, demonstrated by over 1,000 positive feedback responses provided by end users

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