Approach to Process Improvement

Process Enhancement Partners, Inc. (PEP) is a professional services organization devoted exclusively to helping software development and maintenance organizations improve:grow

  • business performance (in terms of project predictability, product quality, productivity, and decreased project cycle time, etc.) and
  • quality of life for the software developers (in terms of reduced pressure, reduced overtime, more reasonable demands and schedules, enhanced teamwork, etc.).

We do this through the use of numerous process improvement models, e.g., the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) Capability Maturity Model® for Integration- CMMI® ; and our understanding of the human dynamics of process improvement (PI). As a full-service organization supporting software process improvement, PEP performs a variety of discrete services in such areas as:

  • appraisals (determination of an organization’s strengths and weaknesses relative to the CMMI®, either informally or through means of formal maturity level rating),
  • training (in such areas as the CMMI, change management, process improvement action planning, etc.), and
  • consulting (in support of process group members or executive change sponsors).

PEP Value Added

Most of our clients find that we add the greatest value when we enter into a long-term relationship, providing an integrated collection of services over time.We refer to this long-term relationship and integrated set of services as a PEP Continuous Improvement Method program (P-CIM). Special challenges arise with clients where there are a number of geographically or functionally diverse software organizations.In such cases, it is critical to identify and respond to the unique needs and special circumstances of each individual business unit, while at the same time maintaining corporate-level consistency in such areas as process improvement policies, resource allocation, reporting requirements, and goal setting. PEP’s approach under these circumstances is to work with both the corporate-level process body and directly with the individual software units.Our objective is to help the corporate body become a vehicle for exchanging experiences and best practices among the software units, while allowing each unit to adopt improvements in a manner, in a sequence, and at a pace that fits for that unit. In other words, PEP makes every effort to insure our clients achieve Process Improvement (PI) autonomy , self-sufficiency and financial benefits.

Summary of Roles and Responsibilities

In is important to distinguish between PEP’s support role and the role in the internal client change agents and sponsors, both at the corporate level and at the operating unit level. PEP’s role is to:

  • bring our experience and expertise regarding the CMMI® and the human dynamics of organizational change;
  • grow and develop the skills and knowledge of the change agents and sponsors with whom we work;
  • act as a sounding board and external experts to validate, mentor, and comment on ‘local’ SPI efforts and ideas
  • work with our clients to leverage the effective use and implementation of ‘improvement techniques and models’ for both financial and human advantage.

The organization’s own personnel must ultimately be responsible for

  • making the key strategic decisions involved in planning the changes,
  • preparing the standards and procedures to be adopted by the organization, and
  • enacting improved processes and providing feedback regarding their effectiveness.