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On this page you’ll find a high-level assessment at the CMMI Key Process level of some of the well-known project management processes PRINCE2, PMBOK and SCRUM. For good measure, the SmartMethod is added for comparison.

 

This assessment can of course only be in very general terms and your specific implementation may well score very differently. Only a proper CMMI appraisal will tell you the specific practices which need attention either in your methodology and/ or in the application by you and your team. However this table does give a good idea of where the pain points typically are.

 

To score each of the methodologies, the following ranking system is used, with the associated point score shown in brackets:

       “0”  not defined / part of the method;

       “1”  not defined, but typically practiced to some degree by individuals;

       “2”  partly defined, but definitely not meeting all CMMI practices;

       “3”  fully defined by the method (including templates).

 

Comments on some aspects of this table are provided at the end of this page.

 

CMMI
Level

PA

Key Process Area

PRINCE2

PMBOK

Scrum

Smart
Method

2

 

Level 2 - Managed

 

 

 

 

2

REQM

Requirements Management

0

0

2

3

2

REQM

bi-directional traceability

0

0

0

3

 

2

PP

Project Planning

2

3

2

3

2

PMC

Project Monitoring and Control

3

3

2

3

2

SAM

Supplier Agreement Management

0

3

0

3

2

MA

Measurement and Analysis

1

1

2

3

2

PPQA

Process and Product Quality Assurance

3

3

1

3

2

CM

Configuration Management

2

0

2

3

2

 

Total “score” level 2

11

13

11

24

 

 

CMMI
Level

PA

Key Process Area

PRINCE2

PMBOK

Scrum

Smart
Method

3

 

Level 3 - Defined

 

 

 

 

3

RD

Requirements Development

0

0

2

3

3

TS

Technical Solution

0

0

1

3

3

PI

Product Integration

0

0

2

3

3

VER

Verification

0

0

2

3

3

VAL

Validation

0

0

2

3

3 RSKM Risk Management 3 3 2 3
3 DAR Decision Analysis and Resolution 0 0 0 3
3 IPM Integrated Project Management 0 3 2 3

3

OPF

Organizational Process Focus

0

0

0

3

3

OPD

Organizational Process Definition

3

2

1

3

3

OT

Organizational Training

0

0

0

3

3

 

Total “score” level 3

6

8

14

33

 

 

General Comments

       Note that project management alone is not enough to make a measurable difference to time / cost and time cost variance. Project management only spans some of the necessary level 2 capabilities. Thus only applying / relying project management like on PRINCE2, will not prevent those horrible twice over time cost or worse experiences!

       Note that the CMMI is specific to software development projects!  Generic project management methodologies can only span a sub-set of the CMMI processes (PP, PMC, SAM, ISM & RSKM, out of a total of 17).

       The scope of the PRINCE2 and PMBOK spans first and foremost the workflow of project management. As such they don’t cover the specifics of a “do work” workflow like software development. After all the PRINCE2 and PMBOK can be used to manage any project in any domain (field of work). As such they won’t meet many of the software specific processes and practices necessary to be able to meet time, cost and quality in software development projects.

       Requirements management is detailed scope management.

PRINCE2:

       Is strong on governance and documenting this

       Does not have a good notion of a WBS, like the PMBOK and CMMI have.

       Is very weak on early involvement of requirements analysis and estimation (leading to poor value business cases!)

       Is weak on supplier agreement management (procurement / SAM)

       Mixes pure project management with do-work aspects such as configuration management (CM).

PMBOK:

       Is not a methodology but a flexible framework, and as such leaves it up to the practitioner what to apply (or not). As a result there is no guarantee that CMMI basics are being applied, as there is no method to enforce it.

       Is very strong / excellent on the WBS, i.e. scope statement, which ties to financial management, scope and change control.

       Is very strong on the procurement / sub-contract management (SAM).

       Because it is generic project management, it rightfully does not address the do‑work aspects of software development, such as configuration management. As such it does not address a host of processes which are software specific, which need to be taken care of by CMMI compliant processes and practices.

Scrum:

       Scrum is excellent on Requirements gathering (RD, level 3) prioritizing (REQM) and reasonable on project monitoring and control (they vary scope to always stay within time/cost!)

       For further information see also Scrum, XP, RUP assessed.

SmartMethod:

       Is not a project management method, but tells the project manager in specific detail what their project management practices should adhere to, in order to behave in a CMMI level 3 fashion, to deliver the software project “as agreed”, on time, to cost.

 

 

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