CMMI, the Key Model for Improving Company Processes and Practices

84.4% of the objectives set by organizations that have adopted CMMI have been successfully achieved or exceeded.

In an era of increasing organizational complexity, the need for an effective framework to elevate performance, improve quality and reduce inefficiencies is more pressing than ever. CMMI (Capability Maturity Model Integration), a globally recognized framework with more than 30 years of proven success, emerges as a cornerstone for companies seeking to thrive in an ever-changing business landscape.

Developed by Carnegie Mellon University’s Software Engineering Institute (SEI) and championed by ISACA (Information Systems Audit and Control Association), an organization that provides certifications and support for information security professionals, CMMI offers a comprehensive approach to understanding and enhancing organizations’ capabilities and performance and improving their software and service development processes and practices. Covering domains such as data and people management, virtual work, development, services, vendor management, security and safety, CMMI provides a solid foundation for organizations to navigate the intricacies of modern operations.

Why the CMMI model is crucial for your company

In light of the Spanish Ministry’s strategic focus in the Science, Technology and Innovation Strategy 2021-2027, CMMI emerges as a powerful ally for companies that aspire not only to meet their objectives, but to exceed them. The need to improve may come from different angles: customers may demand improvements, market forces may demand greater competitiveness, or regulations may require changes. CMMI provides a unique approach that enables an organization to address these multiple needs. By adopting CMMI, companies can improve the efficiency and effectiveness of processes not only in the science, technology and innovation sectors, but across all industries, contributing to the achievement of both organizational and strategic objectives.

In particular, the Spanish government has successfully used the CMMI model in the context of governance and management. This connection amplifies the relevance of CMMI for companies, showing a proven track record within the national landscape. The strategic alignment between the Spanish Ministry’s policies and CMMI principles further underscores the effectiveness of the framework in fostering innovation and advancing scientific endeavors.

About CMMI

The CMMI model is divided into different maturity and capability levels, each of which describes a set of best practices for common and domain-specific business processes required to achieve the desired level, which ranges from 1 to 5. It also has specific Practice Areas that must be met to achieve each maturity or capability level. In addition to the common (business) best practices, there are 8 domains covering product development, service delivery and operations, supplier management, data management, security and cybersecurity, safety, virtual workforce and people management.

CMMI has been used by more than 10,000 organizations, resulting in tangible business benefits, a positive return on investment in improved performance, greater management visibility, faster response to issues and risks, fewer surprises, greater agility, better cost control and much more.

In addition, because of the confidence that a CMMI maturity rating provides, organizations with a CMMI maturity level of 3 or higher have a significant advantage when trying to win government contracts.

According to the ISACA CMMI Technical Report 2019-2022 Performance Results, 84.4% of these goals set by organizations that have adopted CMMI have been successfully met or exceeded. CMMI continues to demonstrate consistent and continuous performance for quality, cost and schedule management, and productivity improvements in almost any organization or industry, worldwide.

Continuous Updates to the CMMI Model

ISACA’s commitment to continuous improvement is evident in the introduction of a new credential pathway for the latest CMMI model, featuring a Building Organizational Capability (BOC) course and a Practitioner Examination.

The new BOC course serves as a crucial foundation, equipping practitioners with a comprehensive understanding of capability improvement skills and preparing them to become a CMMI Practitioner for all domains covered by CMMI. This understanding is essential for successful performance improvement using the CMMI Model. In addition, the course provides participants with an in-depth view of using the CMMI Model to drive business value through capability improvement, equipping them to address real-world challenges within their own organizations.

As of the latest update, the CMMI Model comprises eight domains and includes 17 Practice Areas (PAs) in Core. The domains include:

  • CMMI Development (CMMI-DEV)
  • CMMI People (CMMI-PPL)
  • CMMI Safety (CMMI-SAF)
  • CMMI Safety (CMMI-SEC)
  • CMMI Services (CMMI-SVC)
  • CMMI Suppliers (CMMI-SPM)
  • CMMI Virtual (CMMI-VRT)

These domains were updated to address data management, people management and remote/virtual workforce effectiveness.

The core APs are key areas that organizations should focus on to improve their processes and capabilities. Specific APs may vary depending on the version of the CMMI model and the specific needs of the organization.

Chris Dimitriadis, ISACA’s Global Chief Strategy Officer, highlights continued innovation in developing resources to support practitioners in effectively leveraging the CMMI model. “As we continue to enhance ISACA’s CMMI offerings to keep pace with the dynamic and changing needs of enterprises, stemming from both markets and regulations, we are also innovating in the development of resources to support practitioners every step of the way in effectively leveraging the CMMI model.”



ISACA® ( is a global community that promotes individuals and organizations in their pursuit of digital trust. For more than 50 years, ISACA has equipped individuals and businesses with the knowledge, credentials, education, training and community to advance their careers, transform their organizations and build a more trusted and ethical digital world. ISACA is a global professional association and learning organization that leverages the expertise of its more than 170,000 members working in digital trust fields such as information security, governance, assurance, risk, privacy and quality. It is present in 188 countries, including 225 chapters worldwide. Through its One In Tech Foundation, ISACA supports IT education and career paths for under-resourced and under-represented populations.


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