Northrop Grumman JET Program Achieves CMMI Level 3

The JET Program, within the Surveillance and Reconnaissance Division (SRD) portion of Northrop Grumman’s Mission Systems sector, attained an organization-wide CMMI-SE/SW/IPPD Level 3 maturity rating against the Software Engineering Institute Capability Maturity Model Integrated (CMMI) standard.

Northrop Grumman has 17 CMMI Level 5 ratings, the most earned by any defense or commercial company to-date. The ratings assure Northrop Grumman customers that the company is providing improved quality, greater productivity and predictable program performance.

Northrop Grumman’s latest rating was awarded after a comprehensive assessment of its Colorado Springs, Colorado facility. Integrated Systems Diagnostics, Inc., an independent external organization, conducted the appraisal in accordance with the formal Standard CMMI Appraisal Method for Process Improvement (SCAMPI) methodology.

“Management’s commitment to CMMI helped to ensure this success,” said Albert Soule, external lead appraiser from Integrated Systems Diagnostics, Inc. “Mission Systems’ integration of ISO, AS-9100, Six Sigma, and CMMIhas proven to be an excellent strategy for maximizing project performance. All levels of the organization are involved and focused on continuous improvements for greater business value.”

“This assessment demonstrates that Mission Systems can provide the robust processes and integrated teaming structure needed to support the JET activities,” said Anthony Deley, Vice President of SRD Systems Development Operations (SDO). “Our infrastructure has continued to mature and keep pace with our growth in business over the past few years. Complying with the CMMI ensures that our customers benefit from our increased process capabilities.”

Michael Mariani, JET Program Manager, stated “This is an important, independent measure of the robustness and maturity of our engineering and management processes. The JET program will continue on our path to CMMILevel 5, to provide our customer with greater project performance and quality.”

The Software Engineering Institute is a federally funded research and development center sponsored by the U.S. Department of Defense through the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics. Its core purpose is to help others make measured improvements in their software engineering capabilities.

The CMMI standard was developed by a coalition of industry, government and the Software Engineering Institute to objectively assess the full range of an organization’s software and systems engineering, program management and organizational management capabilities. There are five levels of CMMI maturity, each a layer in the foundation for ongoing process improvement, designated by the numbers one through five with five being the highest. Higher maturity levels signify lower risks to successful program execution.

Northrop Grumman Mission Systems, based in Reston, Va., is a global integrator of complex, mission-enabling systems and services for defense, intelligence and civil government markets. The sector’s technology leadership and expertise spans areas such as strategic systems, including ICBMs; missile defense; intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance; command and control; technical services; and training.

Janis Lamar
Northrop Grumman Mission Systems
(703) 345-7046

ISD announces development of the Comprehensive Appraisal Method (CAM)

ISD has evolved and upgraded the SCE v3.0 product suite to the Comprehensive Appraisal Method (CAM) v1.0. CAM v1.0 now fully supports CMMI Class A, B & C appraisals and SCE.

The name has changed to more accurately reflect the flexibility of the method in supporting all capability maturity models, disciplines, and method application areas. Key method attributes of rigor, robustness, repeatability, and reliability that sponsors and users have come to strongly value in SCE are continued in the CAM.

This training enables you to implement the CAM in your organization without requiring a Lead Appraiser (although for benchmarking applications you will still require one). The CAM also allows for and provides examples of a valid Class A implementation of incremental/delta appraisal which answers the question, “What happens if I miss a [maturity] level by one goal?”

What about CMMI? CAM V1.0 fully supports Assessment ARC Class A, B, and C appraisal method requirements. CAM V1.0 continues to be CMM Appraisal Framework (CAF) compliant and supports CMM-based appraisals.

Although this training does not meet the requirements for participating on a SCAMPI V1.1 appraisal team, refresher training to upgrade from CAM V1.0 to SCAMPI V1.1, if desired, is available and can be delivered by our authorized Lead Appraisers. A draft version of the CAM was provided by ISD as an input method to the SCAMPIV1.1 development team.