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While software process improvement is well established as a practice, it still presents challenges for some adopters. Drop-outs from SPI programs are not uncommon. SPI sustainment is not an established topic of research.

Process Improvement Essentials: CMMI, Six SIGMA, and ISO 9001

Six Sigma is an approach to product and process improvement that has gained wide acceptance and has delivered large business benefits across many industries.

As application of this framework spreads to software development one must consider how Six Sigma relates to, and can be integrated with, other improvement initiatives and models already in use or under consideration. This foundation provides a backdrop for an illustration of how one organization, LSI Logic Storage Systems, has defined the connections between several initiatives currently under way or under consideration. Developing and communicating a clear statement of the connections between various initiatives has been found to be a critical factor for successful deployment of any set of improvements.

Articulating the connections and distinctions between initiatives prevents confusion and helps to avoid conflicting priorities and expectations among those involved. The cost of hardware technology has decreased sharply, and quality has increased by orders of magnitude. The cost and quality of software technology, however, has not seen comparable improvements. Many different responses to these problems have evolved in recent years, including those discussed here and many others, such as ISO and ISO , which will not be examined here.

In response to these diverse approaches, many organizations find themselves somewhat conflicted and confused as to what is best and what should come first. Six Sigma Overview Six Sigma 6s is a multifaceted approach to business improvement. It includes a philosophy, set of metrics, set of improvement frameworks, and a toolkit. Philosophy The Six Sigma philosophy is to improve customer satisfaction through defect elimination and prevention and, as a result, to increase business profitability.

The basic methodology was known as DMAIC define, measure, analyze, improve, and control and its intended use was improvement of existing products and processes. At first glance, it sounds much like the plan-do-check-act cycle that originated with Walter A.

Shewhart in the s Shewhart So what was new and different? Six Sigma also introduced an increased emphasis on control sustaining the gains , and an extensive use of data, statistics, and metrics.

Six Sigma projects begin and end with business considerations. Project selection and tracking focus on maximizing the benefit delivered to the business bottom line. While there may be plenty of fundamental metrics and statistics en route, Six Sigma project success is measured in financial terms.

Success of Six Sigma in software requires more than just an understanding of the Six Sigma philosophy and tools which can be gained from traditional Six Sigma training ; it also requires learning how the tools and philosophy apply to the specific business area being addressed.

To maximize the application and benefit of Six Sigma concepts, case studies, tools, practice problems, and assignments used in the training need to be appropriate to the domain in which Six Sigma is to be applied. The Six Sigma Value Proposition Perhaps the most important distinction between Six Sigma and other approaches to process improvement in software lies in its almost obsessive preoccupation with financially measured business results.

Perhaps there is something here that caters to the needs and desires of software practitioners as well. Experience with Six Sigma has demonstrated, in many business and industry segments, that the payoff can be quite substantial, but that it is also critically dependent on how it is deployed see, for example, Eckes The importance of an effective deployment strategy is no less in software than in manufacturing or transactional environments. An effective Six Sigma deployment begins at the top with executive training that is designed to ensure a clear linkage between corporate strategic imperatives and the Six Sigma program.

Software practitioners understood and supported by executive management! Costs and schedule improvements evaluated based on economic payback! Initiatives sustained after the latest reorganization! Executive juices flow at the prospect of improved financial results, and Six Sigma can deliver. Results will vary significantly from project to project, but the results indicated here are well within the typical range.

How many software process improvement efforts produce comparable results? The principal changes introduced by the CMMI relative to its predecessors Software and Systems Engineering CMM are: 1 certain aspects of the systems engineering and software models are integrated into a single model; 2 both a continuous view in which maturity of specific PAs is rated individually, as in the original system engineering model and in the ISO [SPICE] model and a step view as in the original Software CMM are accommodated; and 3 measurement is introduced at level 2 rather than at level 4 as in the original Software CMM.

From the perspective of Six Sigma, this early introduction of measurement is by far the most important refinement. It requires meeting customer requirements at an agreed upon cost and schedule. To be successful, software engineers need to consistently produce high-quality programs on schedule and at their planned cost.

This book shows you how to do this. While space does not permit a complete description of every aspect of the PSP, the authors think there are several key features that are particularly pertinent to the focus of this article. While there are many other specifics of the PSP, the above gives an overview of the main features. Followed as prescribed, the PSP will provide some of the data that can be analyzed using the Six Sigma tool set, and will lead directly to improved performance.

The Team Software Process TSP is defined in a series of process scripts that describe all aspects of project planning and product development. The process includes team role definitions, defined measures, and the postmortem process. The current version is intended for relatively small teams members , and a version for teams of up to about members is being used on a limited basis.

Limited results available suggest that use of the TSP improves software development effectiveness. It is worth noting that the SEI has taken 13 years to develop these processes and organizations that introduce Six Sigma for Software without capitalizing on this work may have to reinvent much of what the SEI has done.

At a minimum, the PSP and TSP provide an excellent starting place with respect to definition of a mature software process that can effectively leverage the potential of Six Sigma. Similarly, Six Sigma can provide the linkage to the business and facilitate the sustained executive management support essential to success.

Many organizations today have within the executive ranks persons who have experienced the tremendous leverage that Six Sigma can bring.

These individuals speak the Six Sigma language, understand and respect its potential, and are much more likely to support improvement initiatives that are framed and justified as Six Sigma projects. When seeking support of those who control the funding it is very helpful to speak a language they understand. They also believe that the full potential of the data produced by these processes cannot be fully leveraged without applying the more comprehensive Six Sigma for Software toolkit.

Six Sigma for Software can help organizations find the solution s that are truly optimal for each unique circumstance. These products are embedded software intensive, and much of the value-add and product differentiation is produced by the software element of the product.

Typically, software determines time to market, which is a very important competitive consideration, as is product reliability. They are ISO certified, have extensive experience with the application of total quality management TQM , and began to apply Six Sigma to manufacturing and logistics aspects of the business about two years ago.

More recently, as a consequence of significant successes in the initial deployment of Six Sigma, LSI decided to deploy Six Sigma to software engineering activities as well. Early in the process of planning the deployment of Six Sigma to software engineering, the LSI team recognized that they faced two important challenges: 1 how to adapt Six Sigma training that was designed for manufacturing environments to suit software engineering, and 2 how to explain to everyone involved how Six Sigma would relate to and coexist with other improvement initiatives already started or being considered.

Market leadership , to simplify a bit, is an approach to strategic marketing planning that begins at the highest level. This initiative further considers potential differentiation, and attempts to understand and quantify risks in each segment.

Critical chain is much more than can be adequately explained in the space here, so perhaps we can simply say that it is a new and potentially very powerful way to think about project and program management.

It brings some new and important thinking about how to balance risk against the need for the shortest possible cycle times. DFSS is that aspect of Six Sigma concerned with designing new products and processes, as opposed to improving something that already exists.

DFSS employs voice of the customer tools such as needs and context analysis, use cases and measures, KJ analysis, Kano analysis, and various tools for feature importance ranking and prioritization. Further, DFSS attempts to balance the voice of the customer with voice of the business considerations such as time to market, delivered quality, risk, warranty cost, and so forth. DFSS emphasizes forecasting product and process capability before product detailed design and construction in order to be proactive rather than reactive.

Properly executed, DFSS leads to many fewer requirements changes during development, higher customer satisfaction, improved competitiveness, and, consequently, higher market share and profitability. For example, a Six Sigma DMAIC project might define as its primary objective success metric a reduction in software development cost, and as a secondary metric improvement in delivered quality as measured by post-release defects.

To accomplish those objectives the project might introduce an improvement consistent with the Peer Reviews PA. This improvement as a Six Sigma project will differ from a CMM initiative in that it will place greater emphasis on the business case and on controlling and sustaining the change after it is introduced. DMAIC define-measure-analyze-improve-control , is used to improve and optimize existing processes and products. It is also used to redesign existing processes and products that have been optimized but still do not meet performance goals that is, the desired sigma level.

The latter case is believed to frequently occur when moving from a 5-sigma level of performance to a 6-sigma level. An example of the key DFSS steps is define-measure-analyze-design-verify. LeanSigma, another approach to Six Sigma, may emerge as a third framework.

When products or processes were created using DFSS we will have created a lot of valuable information and context that can be revisited to advantage when we later start a DMAIC project.

Thinking through how things connect, who will work on what, and realistic appraisal of the effort and expected returns will reduce resistance, clarify responsibilities, and improve outcomes. The ultimate goal of all process and product improvement approaches is to help people be more effective and efficient in whatever they do. Quality Is Free: The art of making quality certain.

New York: New American Library. Eckes, George. Making Six Sigma last: Managing the balance between cultural and technical changes. New York: John Wiley and Sons. Goldratt, Eliyahu. Critical chain. Great Barrington, Mass. Harry, Mikel, and Richard Schroeder. New York: Doubleday. Humphrey, Watts. Introduction to the Personal Software Process. Reading, Mass. Jones, Capers.

Assessment and control of software risks. Englewood Cliffs, N. Winning market leadership: Strategic market planning for technology-driven businesses. Toronto: John Wiley and Sons Canada. Schwaber, Ken, and Mike Beddle. Agile software development with scrum.

Shewhart, Walter.

Process Improvement Essentials: CMMI, Six SIGMA, and ISO 9001

Six Sigma is an approach to product and process improvement that has gained wide acceptance and has delivered large business benefits across many industries. As application of this framework spreads to software development one must consider how Six Sigma relates to, and can be integrated with, other improvement initiatives and models already in use or under consideration. This foundation provides a backdrop for an illustration of how one organization, LSI Logic Storage Systems, has defined the connections between several initiatives currently under way or under consideration. Developing and communicating a clear statement of the connections between various initiatives has been found to be a critical factor for successful deployment of any set of improvements. Articulating the connections and distinctions between initiatives prevents confusion and helps to avoid conflicting priorities and expectations among those involved. The cost of hardware technology has decreased sharply, and quality has increased by orders of magnitude.

This includes process improvement methods Six Sigma, Lean Enterprise, and other topics of interest to our readers. If you have any questions about the articles appearing in this issue, or you want to suggest topics for future issues, please let us know. Newsletter Sign-up. The Note refers to a quality plan as a document specifying the processes of the quality management system, as well as, the resources to be applied for a specific product, project, or contract. According to ISO , quality plans provide a means of relating specific requirements of the process, product, project, or contract to work methods and practices that support product realization. The benefits of establishing a quality plan include:. Development of a Quality Plan.

Explore a preview version of Process Improvement Essentials right now. Today, technology has become too much a part of overall corporate success for its effectiveness to be left to chance. The stakes are too high. Fortunately, the idea of 'quality management' is being reinvigorated. In the last decade process programs have become more and more prevalent. And, out of all the available options, three have moved to the top of the chain. These three are:.

International Conference on Engineering and Technology Development (ICETD)

Koszyk 0. Do przechowalni. Today, technology has become too much a part of overall corporate success for its effectiveness to be left to chance.

Total quality management TQM consists of organization-wide efforts to "install and make permanent climate where employees continuously improve their ability to provide on demand products and services that customers will find of particular value. While there is no widely agreed-upon approach, TQM efforts typically draw heavily on the previously developed tools and techniques of quality control. In the late s and early s, the developed countries of North America and Western Europe suffered economically in the face of stiff competition from Japan's ability to produce high-quality goods at competitive cost. For the first time since the start of the Industrial Revolution , the United Kingdom became a net importer of finished goods. The United States undertook its own soul-searching, expressed most pointedly in the television broadcast of If Japan Can

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Process Improvement Essentials Cmmi Six Sigma And Iso 9001

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Is CMMI® an Applicable Framework That Can be Used to Improve New Technology Venture Processes?

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