Tag Archives: people management

HMBP Conference 2013 on 24th Sept in Pune and 27th in Bangalore, India

The HMBP Conference (an annual event in its 4th year), showcases what leading organizations are doing and are planning to do in their implementation of high maturity practices.

This year, the HMBP Conference theme is “High Maturity Impacts: Interweaving Services and People” and it is also being held in two cities.

  • at a new venue – Pune on September 24th, 2013
  • in its regular den – Bangalore on September 27th, 2013

Since nobody could figure out the difference between a “Colloquium” and a “Conference”, I believe the organizers decided to stick to the more traditional word. 🙂


I am Rajesh Naik. I am an author, management consultant and trainer, helping IT and other tech companies improve their processes and performance. I also specialize in CMMI® (DEV and SVC), People CMM® and Balanced Scorecard. I am a CMMI Institute certified/ authorized Instructor and Lead Appraiser for CMMI® and People CMM®. I am available on LinkedIn and I will be glad to accept your invite. For more information please click here.

Aligning Ferret (by Swapna Kishore and Rajesh Naik) is now available on Amazon as a Kindle eBook

Aligning Ferret Book Cover
Aligning Ferret: How an Organization Meets Extraordinary Challenges (a business novel) by Swapna Kishore and Rajesh Naik has been published (at last :)) as a Kindle eBook on Amazon.

 

Click here to buy or view details on Amazon.com (or on Amazon.in).

 

About the Book

Aligning Ferret is a business novel (in the style of The Goal by Eliyahu Goldratt) that uses an engrossing story to illustrate the implementation of organizational strategy, performance alignment, and people management in a fictitious, but realistically portrayed organization.

The story is narrated by Sunil Chinnappa (Sunny), a manager at a Bangalore-based software firm, Ferret. Sunil has just completed the implementation of world-class processes to deliver high-quality software at Ferret. But his self-congratulatory mood is cut short when Jim, the COO of the firm that owns Ferret, blasts Ferret for poor performance and threatens it with closure.

 

Here is an excerpt from the book:

“Ferret revenue and profits are totally off target,” says Jim. “And I can’t see your plans.”
“Plans?” My boss, Rajiv, looks stunned. “You have project-wise data and—”
“Plans, Rajiv. Overall plans, like your direction of growth, the sort of projects you’ll execute, and how much of our outsourced work you’ll undertake.” Jim sounds irritated.
Rajiv’s forehead creases. “We’ve improved our processes. Our focus is to execute PTI work better and—”
“Really? Ferret handles only 5% of our outsourced IT work.” Jim’s voice is sharp. “We acquired you to reduce our costs but we still have to use other IT vendors—expensive ones. If that’s all you can execute—”
“Jim—” Rajiv wipes his brow.
“I may acquire another firm in India or China instead of using Ferret.”

[Intrigued already? Click here to view details/ buy on Amazon. or Amazon.in 🙂 ]

Through Aligning Ferret, you will participate in Ferret’s effort to achieve the extraordinary growth Jim demands of Ferret. You will see how, led by Sunny, the managers at Ferret learn and apply relevant concepts, models and frameworks. They focus on performance management systems and on competencies to achieve overambitious targets. Models/ concepts they consider include strategy maps, Balanced Scorecard, and People CMM®. You will see the managers handle this strategy-alignment related effort in addition to coping with ongoing project deadlines, high attrition rates, and ongoing glitches and conflicts.

An aligned organization knows its objectives and focuses on achieving them. Strategy and alignment are not confined to top honchos deciding policy in boardrooms. All employees need to understand these concepts to work effectively within the organizational framework. Aligning Ferret’s engrossing and realistic story makes strategy, alignment, performance management, and related concepts a quick grasp for readers.

[To jump to Amazon and check the book out, click here]

We had released the paperback version of this book some time ago. Many readers had suggested that we also release a eBook version, but we got busy with other stuff, and hey, we wanted to first sell off the paperback copies :).

The book (paperback version) was well-received and perceived as useful by many readers, sometimes in ways that were unexpected / unintended! Most readers could relate the story to their own lives, to situations they have encountered, and to people they work with (including unreasonable bosses!). See comments from over sixty readers here.

The book was also reviewed in the media (magazines, journals, etc.). You may check out these review comments here.

This book has been successfully used by organizations as a supplementary reading to their Leadership Development Programs.

Aligning Ferret is also listed under “references” in The People CMM: A Framework for Human Capital Management (2nd Edition) (This book is available at Amazon.com and Amazon.in)

We have made some changes from the paperback version.

  • The consolidation exercises that were at the end of each chapter (in the paperback) have been moved in the eBook to an Appendix; this maintains the story flow, while the exercises remain available to readers who want to think more about the concepts covered in the book.
  • We have also tweaked some words and phrases to make the story more accessible for readers outside India.
  • Since this is an eBook format, we have been able to include hyperlinks for navigation within the book.

Here are some details, if you want to get a copy of the book:

[By the way, you DON’T need a Kindle device to read a Kindle ebook.]

Aligning Ferret Book Cover
Title: Aligning Ferret: How an Organization Meets Extraordinary Challenges

Authors: Swapna Kishore and Rajesh Naik

Publishing Date: Kindle Edition: May 2013 [Earlier Paperback in 2008]

Language: English

ASIN: B00CZA94XC

Available at: Amazon.com and Amazon.com.

 

[By the way, you DON’T need a Kindle device to read a Kindle ebook.]

You can also view a book trailer below:

Please feel free to to share your views, experiences or queries, using the “comments” feature available.
You may also forward the link to this post to your friends, colleagues, and anyone else who may be interested.

Notes:

Nothing Official About It! – The views presented above are in no manner reflective of the official views of any organization, community, group, institute, or association. They may not even be the official views of the author of this post :-).


I am Rajesh Naik. I am an author, management consultant and trainer, helping IT and other tech companies improve their processes and performance. I also specialize in CMMI® (DEV and SVC), People CMM® and Balanced Scorecard. I am a CMMI Institute certified/ authorized Instructor and Lead Appraiser for CMMI® and People CMM®. I am available on LinkedIn and I will be glad to accept your invite. For more information please click here.

People CMM® – Explored: A Quick Overview – A Presentation

Last week, I made a presentation on the People CMM® to an industry body (SLASSCOM) in Sri Lanka.

A version (slightly modified) of the presentation is here:

In case the presentation does not load, use the link http://www.slideshare.net/AlignMentor/pcmm-exploredquick-view

Other presentations covering CMMI®., People CMMI, Balanced Scorecard, Strategy Maps and Competency Frameworks on AlignMentor are available here.

Please feel feel to share your views, experiences or queries, using the “comments” feature available.

Also, let me know what kind of other slide sets you would like to see in this blog.

Notes:

Nothing Official About It! – The views presented above are in no manner reflective of the official views of any organization, community, group, or association. They may not even be the official views of the author 😉

You may also be interested in the following posts uploaded on the same blog:

Please feel feel to share your views, experiences or queries, using the “comments” feature available.

 


I am Rajesh Naik. I am an author, management consultant and trainer, helping IT and other tech companies improve their processes and performance. I also specialize in CMMI® (DEV and SVC), People CMM® and Balanced Scorecard. I am a CMMI Institute certified/ authorized Instructor and Lead Appraiser for CMMI® and People CMM®. I am available on LinkedIn and I will be glad to accept your invite. For more information please click here.

My List of Books for Implementing People CMM®

I am often asked – “which book should I use for understanding People CMM®?” I have, on several occasions, provided names of different books related to topics under discussion. So, this time when someone asked me, I decided to create a comprehensive list of books and articles that I have found useful.

I have over time referred many books, and the list below is a combination that I found useful to get more insights into generic and some specific aspects of the model.

The list is not a result of a comprehensive survey and evaluation. There are likely to be other books that are better for specific topics; and a different combination of books may work as well or better.

Anyway, here goes:
PCMM Book Cover“The People CMM® (Second Edition): A Framework for Human Capital Management” by Bill Curtis, William Hefley, and Sally Miller. Available at Amazon.com, Amazon.in and Flipkart-India .

Well,  if you want to understand the model, you need a copy of the definitive book. Without this book, other books will provide fragmented insights and will not make holistic sense. And if you are serious about understanding or implementing the model, I suggest that you get a printed version in addition to downloading a free softcopy pdf version (from SEI/ CMMI Institute site), for quick searches of specific topics and keywords.

PCMM Book of Rajesh NaikDIVERSION: You can see an image of my dog-eared copy of the paperback version. It has been with me since 2003 (an older edition). It has witnessed (if books can witness :-)) many appraisals (both pre-SCAMPI as well as SCAMPI), and many training courses. If you get really close to the book, you can smell Dalian, Manila, Riga, Bratislava, London, Colombo, Mauritius, Bangkok, Pittsburg, Austin, and many Indian cities – Bangalore, Mumbai, Chennai, NCR, Hyderabad, Pune, Indore, and Mysore. There are stains on different pages – coffee, tea, cranberry preserve, sambhar, apple juice – you get the picture. Someday, I hope it acquires a historic and antique value; until then I will continue to use it (and also accumulate more history :-)).

Other books that I found useful:

Human Resource Champions Cover
1) “Human Resource Champions” by David Ulrich provides an approach to HR that shifts the focus from activities to be done to outcomes to achieve. The book helped me to look at HR as a business partner with an enhanced role as a strategic player, administrative expert, employee champion, and change agent.
Available at Amazon.com, Amazon.in, and Flipkart-India.

From the Ground UP Cover
2) “From the Ground Up” by Edward Lawler III provides six principles for organizational transformation. I found it very useful for handling the change management that People CMM® implementation requires.
Available at Amazon.com,Amazon.in, and Flipkart-India.

Competitive Advantage Cover
3) “Competitive Advantage Through People” by Jeffrey Pfeffer explores how effective people management practices enable organizations to achieve superior performance, by using examples of successful companies that treat their workforce as “assets/ investments” instead of “costs/ expenses”.
Available at Amazon.com, Amazon.in, and Flipkart-India.

Balanced Scorecard Cover
4) “The Balanced Scorecard” by Robert Kaplan and David Norton. I found it useful for process areas of Performance Management and Organizational Performance Alignment.
Available at Amazon.com, Amazon.in, and Flipkart-India.

Strategy Maps Cover
5) “Strategy Maps”, once again by Robert Kaplan and David Norton, helps me in generating ideas for the process area Organizational Performance Alignment.
Available at Amazon.com, Amazon.in, and Flipkart-India.

Competence at Work Cover
6) “Competence At Work” by Lyle Spencer and Signe Spencer is the classic for setting up a competency framework and competency assessments. I keep going back to this book for the process areas – Competency Analysis and Competency Development.
Available at Amazon.com, Amazon.in, and Flipkart-India.

HR Scorecard Cover
7) “The HR Scorecard: Linking People, Strategy, and Performance” by Dave Ulrich, Mark A. Huselid, Brian E. Becker provides the framework for setting up a robust measurement program for tracking performance and effectiveness of HR/ People management in organizations. This book has been useful to me to set up the “measurement” related practices of People CMM® across many process areas.
Available at Amazon.com, Amazon.in, and Flipkart-India.

Workforce Scorecard Cover
8) “The Workforce Scorecard: Managing Human Capital To Execute Strategy” by Mark Huselid, Brian Becker, and Richard Beatty – this book (in addition to the HR Scorecard book) gave me more insights in designing effective metrics for People CMM® implementation. The book also enlightened me on how behaviors, competencies, and culture impact organizational performance.
Available at Amazon.com, Amazon.in, and Flipkart-India.

Designing Team Based Organizations Cover
9) “Designing Team-Based Organizations: New Forms for Knowledge Work” by Susan Albers Mohrman, Susan G. Cohen, Allan M. Mohrman Jr. This book provided me greater understanding of the process areas – Empowered Wokgroups, Workgroup Development and (to some extent) Competency Integration.
Available at Amazon.com, Amazon.in, and Flipkart-India.

Workforce of One Cover
10) “Workforce of One” by Susan Cantrell and David Smith enabled me to look at the aspect of customization of HR practices to meet the requirements of multiple segments of people. This is now increasingly possible because of the availability of automation for administering flexible policies. You can read a detailed review of this book on another post here .
Available at Amazon.com, Amazon.in, and Flipkart-India.

Here are two papers (not books) that have been extremely useful to me, in addition to the list above (besides, they are “classics”) .

  • The Core Competence of the Corporation by C K Prahalad, and Gary Hamel (Amazon-Digital version)
  • Fighting the War for Talent is Hazardous to Your Organization’s Health by Jeffrey Pfeffer (Free Download here).

This is my list  for People CMM®. Please use the comment/ reply facililty to add your own list of useful books for understanding/ implementing the model – a small write-up on what the book addresses and how it is useful in the context of People CMM® will help other readers.

Some book reviews uploaded on the same blog:

Notes:

Nothing Official About It! – The views presented above are in no manner reflective of the official views of any organization, community, group, institute, or association. They may not even be the official views of the author of this post :-).


I am Rajesh Naik. I am an author, management consultant and trainer, helping IT and other tech companies improve their processes and performance. I also specialize in CMMI® (DEV and SVC), People CMM® and Balanced Scorecard. I am a CMMI Institute certified/ authorized Instructor and Lead Appraiser for CMMI® and People CMM®. I am available on LinkedIn and I will be glad to accept your invite. For more information please click here.

Interview: Vinod Sood of Hughes Systique on the People CMM® as a workforce improvement framework

Vinod Sood Photo 1

Vinod Sood (VS)  is the Managing Director at Hughes Systique. In this interview, he shares why his organization selected the People CMM® for the next organizational transformation. He also articulates the expectations from implementing the People CMM® at HSC.

Q: Please tell us something about your organization, Hughes Systique.

VS: Hughes Systique Corporation (HSC), a part of the Hughes group of companies, is headquartered in Rockville Maryland with its Global R&D and Delivery center in Gurgaon, India. HSC is a leading provider of technology services (Engineering R&D services and Outsourced Product Development)  in the communications, embedded and media domain (more details at www.hsc.com). HSC counts Tier 1 OEMs, ISVs, and Hi-Tech & emerging technology companies as its customers worldwide. HSC has offices in India, USA, UK and South Korea.

HSC has already been appraised for CMMI® – DEV at maturity level 5. It is also certified for ISO 9001:2000 and ISO 27001:2005 (ISMS).

We have 400 employees, majority of them working out of our Gurgaon office.

Q: Please tell us why and how you decided on adopting the People CMM® model.

VS: We at HSC believe that balanced improvements equally focused on “People”, “Process” and “Technology” are a sure-shot recipe for long-term sustained success. With that intent we have invested heavily in these 3 areas since our inception.

Through our BMS (Business Management System) and the certification against ISO 9001, and ISO 27001 and rating of maturity level 5 against the CMMI® -DEV we have largely addressed the “Process” part.

On the “Technology” front, we have evaluated and deployed many tools that help us with various aspects of software development and project management (e.g., configuration management, code quality, open source compliance, continuous integration, program management, project metrics analysis, internal audits, and customer satisfaction surveys).

On the “People” front, our processes are very progressive and people friendly. We realized that they can be taken many notches higher and we need to enhance their effectiveness and ensure higher consistency in their application across the organization.  After a series of discussions with internal stakeholders and external experts, we eventually decided to adopt People CMM®.

Q: Where are you at present in your People CMM® Journey? And what all have you done to get People CMM® started at Hughes Systique?

VS: Well, we are making steady progress at this point.  In Q3’2012, after the initial due diligence we put the roadmap and plan in place. Our HR and Quality team performed an initial gap analysis, and came up with an action plan. After that, we had a formal kick-off with all relevant stakeholders and formed task forces to handle various focused improvements. Then an external partner was engaged to help us through the journey. A detailed gap analysis was carried out by the external partner in Q4’2012 (Shyama Chakraborty of QAI). Currently, we are working on incorporating the suggested improvements and closing the gaps.

Q: What are the goals you hope to achieve by implementing People CMM®?

VS: We are in a people-centric and knowledge-intensive industry. The business parameters we will focus on are utilization (which depends on attrition rate and time to ramp up new hires) and gross margin (which depends on competency and cost of resources). It should also help us improve hiring, training, employee engagement, etc. The People CMM® model will calibrate our existing people practices against best-in-class practices prevalent in the industry.

Q: Please tell us something about the timeframes planned (in relation to the People CMM® journey)

VS: Our goal is to eventually deploy maturity level 5 practices and get a formal rating by end of 2015, with an interim milestone of a formal maturity level 3 in the early part of 2014.

Q: Who will be driving the PCMM journey in Hughes Systique?

VS: The coordination of the overall roadmap, interim implementation reviews and appraisals would be driven by our Quality group.  Quality will also facilitate HR in process definition and deployment. A Steering Group comprising our senior executives provides oversight on the progress.

Changes to existing processes and their deployment internally will be driven by HR via various task forces. The task forces would work on specific areas while collaborating with each other.

Q: How would you compare People CMM® with any other HR model/methodology that you have experienced in the past?

VS: According to our HR Head Rohit Sahu: “We are still learning, but based on what we have been able to understand, People CMM® provides a balanced and staged approach to improving people practices. I think this model has its bearing in many sound concepts underpinning Human Capital Management (HCM), Organizational Development (OD), Industrial Psychology and HR Analytics.”

Q: Would a People CMM® appraisal status matter for the industry that you are operating in?

VS: At present none of our customers ask for it. But this could definitely be a differentiator that we could project to our customers. Due to high attrition in the IT industry, strong people practices assure our customers business continuity and fulfillment of delivery commitments.

It should also help us in our endeavor to make HSC the 1st choice for aspiring Telecom Software Professionals.

Q: Is there anything youVinod Sood Photo 2 would like to tell/ convey to the readers?

VS: We are looking forward to People CMM® as an enabler to further mature our internal people practices and provide some of the business benefits I spoke about earlier. As they say well begun is half done. We have started on a strong footing and I am confident we will learn and mature ourselves, both as individuals and as an organization.

Thank you Vinod, for your time and sharing your thoughts. We hope you can provide us updates to your progress in some months.

Vinod Sood (VS)  is the Managing Director at Hughes Systique. His LinkedIn page is here.

Other related posts uploaded on the same blog:

Please feel feel to share your views, experiences or queries, using the “comments” feature available.
Notes:

Nothing Official About It! – The views presented above are in no manner reflective of the official views of any organization, community, group, institute, or association. They may not even be the official views of the interviewer or the interviewee :-).


I am Rajesh Naik. I am an author, management consultant and trainer, helping IT and other tech companies improve their processes and performance. I also specialize in CMMI® (DEV and SVC), People CMM® and Balanced Scorecard. I am a CMMI Institute certified/ authorized Instructor and Lead Appraiser for CMMI® and People CMM®. I am available on LinkedIn and I will be glad to accept your invite. For more information please click here.

People CMM® Appraisals – 2012 Update

An year has passed since I made the first post summarizing data related to Class-A appraisals for the People CMM®. (the post was Adoption of People CMM® -01: Appraisal Results).

See the latest post at: People CMM® Appraisals – 2014 Update

Here is the updated data with the People CMM® SCAMPISM-A published results of 2012 added:

No. of People CMM® Appraisals

Data for 2010, 2011 and 2012 has been picked up from the Published Appraisal Results Site maintained by the CMMI Institute. Earlier data has been picked up from multiple sources as given in the table. Some appraisals may be missing from the data, if the appraised entity did not wish to publish the results (for whatever reasons).

Further analysis of the past 20 appraisals (of the last 3 years) listed in the Published Appraisal Results Site (with Filter People CMM® v2.0)  shows the following:

  • The six appraisals of 2012 were led by three LAs (D Sankararaman, K Kothandaraman and Rajesh Naik).
  • The 20 People CMM® appraisals (of the last 3 years) were accounted for between four LAs.
  • There are 9 authorized LAs for the model on 13-Feb 2013 (the number of LAs was 13 last year). Four of the nine have done at least one SCAMPISM-A appraisal in the last 3 years. (for a list of People CMM® LAs go to the Partner Directory; select “CMMI Institute Authorized SCAMPI with People CMM Lead Appraiser” option –> you will get the list of LAs for People CMM®).
  • Most appraised organizations of the last 3 years belong to the IT, ITes and engineering domains.
  • Accenture – Tech units across the globe has the highest number of entries in the list of the last 3 years.

The reasons for the low number of appraisals for People CMM® have been discussed in the post Adoption of People CMM® -03: Why is it Low?  – I believe the same reasons continue to apply even today.

Hope we have a greater adoption of the model and more number of reported appraisals in 2013 and beyond.

Other related posts uploaded on the same blog:

Notes:

Nothing Official About It! – The views presented above are in no manner reflective of the official views of any organization, community, group, institute, or association. They may not even be the official views of the author :-).

SM-SCAMPI is a service mark of Carnegie Mellon University.
The People CMM® (by Bill Curtis, Bill Hefley, and Sally Miller) has been available for more than 15 years. Version 1.0 of the model was released in 1995 and version 2.0 was released in 2001.


I am Rajesh Naik. I am an author, management consultant and trainer, helping IT and other tech companies improve their processes and performance. I also specialize in CMMI® (DEV and SVC), People CMM® and Balanced Scorecard. I am a CMMI Institute certified/ authorized Instructor and Lead Appraiser for CMMI® and People CMM®. I am available on LinkedIn and I will be glad to accept your invite. For more information please click here.

Organizational Alignment using Strategy Maps and Balanced Scorecard (BSC) – a Presentation

Organizational performance alignment has been given increased emphasis in the latest versions (V1.3) of the CMMI® model. The significantly upgraded process area renamed as Organizational Performance Management (OPA) requires process performance and improvement goals be derived from overall organizational business goals.

The People CMM® has always insisted on the linkage between business goals and units goals, workgroup goals, individual goals, and process performance goals.

The Balanced Scorecard (BSC) framework (with Strategy Maps) has been in use for many, many years, and many organizations have reported considerable improvement in their performances with the use of BSC.

CMMI® and People CMM® implementations can be significantly strengthened with the use of BSC.

The concept of BSC has been explained in the slide presentation linked / pasted below.

In case the presentation does not load, use the link http://www.slideshare.net/naik.rajeshnaik/organizational-alignment-using-strategy-maps-and-balanced-scorecard

Other presentations covering CMMI®., People CMMI, Balanced Scorecard, Strategy Maps and Competency Frameworks on AlignMentor are available here.

Please share your views, experiences or queries, using the “comments” feature available at the top of this article/ post.

Notes:

Nothing Official About It! – The views presented above are in no manner reflective of the official views of any organization, community, group, or association.


I am Rajesh Naik. I am an author, management consultant and trainer, helping IT and other tech companies improve their processes and performance. I also specialize in CMMI® (DEV and SVC), People CMM® and Balanced Scorecard. I am a CMMI Institute certified/ authorized Instructor and Lead Appraiser for CMMI® and People CMM®. I am available on LinkedIn and I will be glad to accept your invite. For more information please click here.

Interview: D Sankararaman – a Consultant-cum-LA’s view of People CMM®

Shankar Photo 1Sankararaman D (Shankar for short) is a consultant and trainer on project management, operational and HR process improvement. He works for QAI. He has published articles and has been an invited speaker at many conferences and institutes. In this interview, Shankar shares his experiences on People CMM®, as a consultant and a lead appraiser for the model.

Q:    Please tell us something about your professional history/ background

A:    I have a chequered journey in terms of studies as well as my jobs. The net outcome of the journey is that I am an engineering graduate and a management student. I have worked in MIS, EDP, Software Development, Pre-sales, support, Software Quality roles before landing up in a consulting career. Most of what has happened to me in my professional career has happened by accident rather than by design. And I have been happy with these accidents .

Q:    What kind of work do you do?

A:    I work with various organizations helping them improve their processes. I also train people on various topics like estimation, project management, and process management. I am a lead appraiser. This means that I am a “level maniac” who goes around attempting to stamp every organization with anything from level -10 to level 42.

Q:    Please let us know the industries for which you have done People CMM® appraisals

A:    I have done for the “usual” suspects 🙂 – IT organizations and BPO organizations. Additionally, I have also been involved in appraisals for Banks, Consulting organizations, and R & D organizations as well. Other than appraisals, I have also done training and consulting with firms in domains like insurance.

Q:    Is the pressure on the “certification” aspect as high in People CMM® as in CMMI®?

A:     No and Yes. First, let me clarify the “No” part. Fortunately, no client or RFP or RFT insists that an organization should be People CMM® “certified” by a particular date. As a consequence, we seldom come across organizations trying to use 10 cars travelling parallel at 100 kms to reach a 1000 km destination in 1 hour. Companies that pursue People CMM® appraisals do it driven mainly by internal triggers and the value of People CMM® perceived by them.
Coming to the “Yes” part of the response. There are a few times, when organizations chase their internal deadlines. In my view, this may not be completely bad. If organizations don’t have a target, then they risk never accomplishing anything. With a target, there tends to be frantic activity closer to the target date. But, that is better than doing nothing.

Q:    Most organization either aim for ML 3 or ML 5 (very rarely ML 2 or ML 4). What are the reasons? And what do you advice?

A:    I believe there is a long legacy and more of informal convention to this rather than a logical basis. The advice depends on the organization’s situation and needs. If one is looking for early results and to achieve some milestones to build momentum, then the organization should undergo a formal appraisal for ML 2.
Organizations that have a strong record of basic HR practices and have validated the same with respect to the People CMM® can pursue an initial roadmap for ML3.
In any case, organizations should ensure that they have implemented, institutionalized, and validated their ML 3 implementation through a formal appraisal before pursuing ML 4 and ML 5.

Regarding ML 4 and ML 5, it is extremely important that organizations have absolute clarity on why they are pursuing the higher levels.  The quantum of the delivery organization / business organization’s involvement in ML 4 and ML 5 goes up manifold. So, CXO level commitment is critical as well.
Organizations that are for the first time journey crossing ML3 should seriously consider completing a ML 4 appraisal before pursuing a ML 5 journey.

Q:    Do you find that organizations get lasting benefits on implementing People CMM®?

A:     Your question is almost like asking “Do you get lasting benefits from the library in your house?” or even worse “Do you get lasting benefits from the gym that you are a member of?” Obviously, it depends on what I do in the library (read, sleep, gossip, gamble, ….) or in the gym (visit a fast food joint after a brief chat session in the gym!). Similarly, it depends significantly on how the organizations approach the implementation of People CMM®. I have seen a number of organizations who have a sustained focus on HR process implementation and they have seen lasting benefits.

To restate this discussion, Can lasting benefits be obtained by organizations through People CMM®? Without doubt, Yes.

Does it depend on People CMM® or the organization? It depends more on the organization rather than on People CMM®.

Q:    Are the benefits higher on implementing ML3 or on implementing ML5?

A:    I would say that the correct question should be “Are the benefits higher on implementing ML3 alone or when we implement ML3 and ML 5. The definitive part is that there are lasting benefits to be had by implementing ML3 in a well institutionalized manner.

The incremental benefits of implementing ML 4 and ML5 require certain pre-requisites. Some of these include: What is the organizational size? Very small organizations may not gain substantially from implementing all the higher maturity practices of People CMM®. In fact, they may face challenges in implementing higher maturity practices effectively. How stable or challenging is the organization’s business situation? Another pre-requisite for harvesting the benefits of ML4 and ML5 is involvement from the business / delivery organization including the executive management. Also, organizations with a strong culture of management using quantitative data for decision making are likely to benefit more by implementing ML4 and ML5.

Q:    What kind of organizations should go for a ML3 appraisal?

A:    In my view, any organization that is serious about its employees and their relevance to the business should implement at least till ML3. It is a different question as to whether they should undergo a formal appraisal. It does help when organizations have first imbibed a basic process culture through implementation of ISO 9001 and / or CMMI ML3. These help faster adoption of People CMM® and that in turn helps sustain these other standards and models.

Q:    What kind of organizations should go for ML5? Shankar Photo2

A:     There are multiple aspects to consider. Any organization with a serious focus on their business performance, employee skills and alignment can benefit from the key themes of  ML4 and ML5 viz.,. aspects like knowledge management, mentoring, and controlled improvement of HR practices.

To implement ML4 and ML5 effectively, I would premise that these organizations have collected data for a long period; they have sustained their competency based practices over several cycles; they are reasonably large (headcount more than 1000 employees) for them to adapt pattern (data) driven decision making and benefit from the same.

Q:    What is the benefit in taking a target level and doing a SCAMPI-A for People CMM®? Why can’t we ignore the formal appraisal and just implement the mode? What will they lose? They will save some time and money and annoying interactions with the LA :-).

A:     I have worked with three variants of organizations. Organizations that have just implemented the model, and not done a formal appraisal. Organizations that have implemented the model and have undergone a semi-formal appraisal like a SCAMPI B. And of course, organizations that have culminated their journey with a formal SCAMPI A and a maturity level.

Curiously enough, we have observed the extent of institutionalization has been strongest in organizations who have culminated their journey in a formal SCAMPI A. May be it is just that organizations who pursue a formal maturity level implement their processes more rigorously than those who don’t.

If the leadership focus and internal intent is there, organizations might as well not go for the formal appraisal. It is just that the data till date indicates otherwise.

Q:    Are there any process areas in People CMM® that are just not worth the effort, as you have observed in many organizations? And these are implemented only for the sake of the appraisal?

A:     In my personal opinion, there are certain parts of People CMM® that are not effectively appreciated in implementation. These include important themes like delegation of authority covered in a process area called Participatory Culture.

There is also the process area called Workgroup Development, and this a subject to various interpretations.

There is a case for looking at re-presenting these process areas and themes in alternate ways for effective understanding and implementation by the user community.

The other perception that we have heard from many of the users is that it is heavy in terms of the language and phrases used. And there are people who have opined that certain themes like communication and coordination have been repeated multiple times in model.

In a sense, there may be an opportunity to simplify the model and make it more compact as well.

Q:    The SCAMPI methodology was created with CMMI® in mind. Is it suitable for People CMM®? Which aspects of the appraisal method are out of sync with the model in your experience?

A: The current version of the SCAMPI method (SCAMPI 1.3) was developed / refined keeping in mind all the constellations of CMMI® as well as People CMM®. So, it is as suitable for People CMM® as it is for CMMI® constellations.

The method also provides the lead appraiser and the sponsor several tailoring options. So, it is up to the lead appraiser to suitably leverage the method and adhere to the method to perform an effective appraisal. In my experience, I have not come across any significant aspects that I would as unsuitable.

Shankar Photo 3Q:    Could you tell us about other frameworks / models in the similar area? How good are they?

A:    The other frameworks that we have come across include concepts like “Investor in People” and Human Resource Excellence Framework. The aspects where People CMM® scores compared to these models and concepts are in terms of adopting a systems approach, promoting institutionalization, and emphasizing on a competency driven approach as a fulcrum for people management

Shankar is a Consulting Partner with QAI where he leads the People CMM® Practice. He may be contacted at rfsankar@yahoo.com or rfsankar@yahoo.com. His linkedin profile is here.

Thank you, Shankar, for sharing these useful insights.

Other related posts uploaded on the same blog:

Notes:

The views presented above represent the personal views of D Sankararaman and are in no manner reflective of the official views of QAI, SEI, or AlignMentor or any other organization, community, group, or association.


I am Rajesh Naik. I am an author, management consultant and trainer, helping IT and other tech companies improve their processes and performance. I also specialize in CMMI® (DEV and SVC), People CMM® and Balanced Scorecard. I am a CMMI Institute certified/ authorized Instructor and Lead Appraiser for CMMI® and People CMM®. I am available on LinkedIn and I will be glad to accept your invite. For more information please click here.

HMBP (High Maturity Best Practices) Colloquium – 2012 proceedings are now available for download

The HMBP Colloquium (an annual event in its 3rd year), was held in Bangalore on September 7, 2012. This year’s theme was “High Maturity – Beyond Statistics & Quantification”.

Full details of the colloquium are available here.

The presentations of the day were put up on a page at a website. They are no longer available.


I am Rajesh Naik. I am an author, management consultant and trainer, helping IT and other tech companies improve their processes and performance. I also specialize in CMMI® (DEV and SVC), People CMM® and Balanced Scorecard. I am a CMMI Institute certified/ authorized Instructor and Lead Appraiser for CMMI® and People CMM®. I am available on LinkedIn and I will be glad to accept your invite. For more information please click here.

Interview: Ajay Prabhu (COO) and Sonia Kutty (GM-HR) of QuEST share their experience of implementing People CMM® in an engineering organization

Ajay Prabhu (AP) is the Chief Operating Officer and Sonia Kutty (SK)  is  General Manager – Human Resources  at QuEST. In this interview, they share their experiences in the transformation brought about at QuEST, through the People CMM® initiative.

QuEST (OBU – India, Bangalore) was appraised and rated at maturity level 3 of the People CMM® in June 2012, using the SCAMPI-A (v1.2) appraisal methodology. Read more details here.

Q:           Please tell us something about your professional history/ background

Ajay Photo 1Ajay Prabhu (AP):            Oh well, it started off with a flight from Bombay-to-Boston back in 1990. After graduating from National Institute of Technology, I joined a Masters program in the University of Massachusetts. Seven memorable and intellectually-enriching years later, I graduated with a PhD in high frequency electronics and joined Hewlett Packard in Sonoma County, California. Unlike most others with a PhD, I joined the manufacturing part of HP’s Test & Measurement Division. It was a great experience, going from a research environment to the hustle and bustle of the manufacturing floor. After a couple of years into the job, HP divested our division into an independent company – Agilent Technologies. It was an exhilarating time when the company was transforming; I too transformed alongside. In 2002, I decided to move back to India and have been with QuEST ever since. I have had a fantastic journey while learning and contributing to QuEST’s transformation from a small 200 people company to 4000 people fast-growing global enterprise.Sonia Photo 1

Sonia Kutty (SK):              Well, you could say I am a thoroughbred “Questian” since a major part of my career has been with QuEST. When I joined QuEST way back in 2002 we were a small company with 300 employees or so. Today we touch 4000 and it has been a tremendous journey.

Prior to QuEST, I worked with Toyota Kirloskar Motors in the Human Resource Planning Department.

Q:           Please tell us something about your organization, QuEST.

AP:         QuEST is indeed a nice story. Started by college graduates, who spotted an opportunity to build a business around better ‘customer focus’. This central theme has been the mainstay of QuEST growth since inception in 1997 in New York, USA.

The company was an early adopter of offshoring of Engineering Services when QuEST set up its India presence in 1998. QuEST is ‘Born to Engineer’; we are completely focused on providing engineering services to a  few marquee customers in Power Generation, Oil & Gas, Aerospace, Transport and Industrial verticals. QuEST is busy bringing engineers of many nationalities to work together as one seamless team to bring unprecedented value to our customers –  “Great quality at competitive pricing”. Today, QuEST employs close to 1000 American, 250 English, 250 Spanish, 100 Australian, 100 Italian and 2300 Indians working out of 29 different cities spread across the world. QuEST is a truly global engineering company. We have been doubling our staff every 24 months for quite a few years now.

Read the full post here


I am Rajesh Naik. I am an author, management consultant and trainer, helping IT and other tech companies improve their processes and performance. I also specialize in CMMI® (DEV and SVC), People CMM® and Balanced Scorecard. I am a CMMI Institute certified/ authorized Instructor and Lead Appraiser for CMMI® and People CMM®. I am available on LinkedIn and I will be glad to accept your invite. For more information please click here.