dinsdag 12 oktober 2010

Why do so few follow the P-CMM?

In the LinkedIn People CMM workgroup, a discussion was started by Tom Neff on why so few follow the P-CMM? Below his original question, and the reaction that I have posted based on things that we discussed in our P-CMM workgroup meetings. Reactions are welkome!

Why do so few follow the P-CMM? By Tom Neff:

The CMMI has gained fair acceptance around the world...even in some companies that might have to take the model and amend it to fit their situation. However, I believe most CMMI efforts either fail or fall way short of their full potential.

The last time I checked, 100% of all companies in the world have at least one employee. However, much closer to 0% of all companies are using the P-CMM. Why is that? I have come to believe that if one could successfully implement P-CMM (even just some of it) in your organization, it would SIGNIFICANTLY increase the odds of being successful with CMMI.

Given the failure rate of CMMI efforts but that you still need CMMI and you have people, it seems that one should work on P-CMM, then when the organization understands this "some change is good" thing, they'll be much more receptive to their new roles in CMMI.

Thoughts anyone?

Reaction by Ben Linders:

In the Netherlands there is a P-CMM working group, which is part of SPIder (the Dutch official Software Process Improvement Network, SPIN). We started in april 2009 and had a full day session with Gian Wemyss of the SEI in june (again thanks Gian for helping us that day!). We had several meeting where, amongst other P-CMM topics, the low adaptation level was discussed. Causes that were mentioned often were that only very few professionals and organizations know the model, there is very few information about the business benefits that the P-CMM has brought to organizations, and deploying the P-CMM is not always that easy.

As mentioned earlier the P-CMM is mostly know by the same professionals that have used the CMM(I). However these are mainly software development professionals, while the P-CMM is a management/HRM model. We have several HR and Management professionals in our working group, and are putting effort in promoting the model in HRM communities and getting (senior) managemenmt attention for the model, and its application.

There is only limited information of companies that have used the P-CMM, and most of that information is either confidential or there is insufficient detail in the publicly available information. That makes it very difficult to convince people that using the P-CMM can bring benefits. Also, there has been a shift in the goal why organizations (would) use the P-CMM. The initial business cases stressed the need to keep professionals, and keep then motivated as a main reason to deploy the People CMM. But in the economic crises, there are often other reasons to use the People CMM, like improving the quality of product and customer service. Differents goals to use the People CMM require different business cases; and since there are so few available many organizations will hesitate to use the model.

Finally, many of our working group meetings focused on getting a good understanding of the People CMM model, and discussing ways to deploy it. We learned a lot in the workgroup meeting, but it also became clear that the state of practice of the People CMM is still very premature. To state it otherwise, the maturity of using the P-CMM is very low, and there are very few people who are capable of deploying the model. There is a big need to share experiences of using the model (and any other People based practices/models), which we as a workgroup will continue to do in our regular meetings.

We have setup a website to exchange experiences at
http://www.workforcematurity.nl , and started a blog at http://people-cmm.blogspot.com/ . Since we are a Dutch working groups, part of the material are in Dutch; our apologies for that, we try to publish as much as possible in English but if we run across good things in Dutch then we also share them on our website and blog. You are all welcome to join our discussions on the web. If you are living in the Netherlands, I welcome you to join our working group, which are free of charge (this is by professionals, for professionals, helping each other).

I am looking forward to reactions on this? Do you see similar reasons why the P-CMM is used so little, or other reasons?