Software Engineering Institute | Carnegie Mellon University
Software Engineering Institute | Carnegie Mellon University

TSP and Other Models and Methodologies

 Will my organization need to adopt CMMI in order to benefit from PSP/TSP?

No. We do recommend, however, that organizations have an ongoing corporate improvement program with defined measurable goals, a means of assessing progress, and the key infrastructure components (SEPG, SQA, etc.) This will help to ensure successful broad adoption of PSP/TSP and will protect the investment in PSP/TSP through other organizational change.

Achieving the CMMI PA goals is easier with PSP/TSP, and PSP/TSP helps to ensure an effective implementation that produces measurable improvement that relates directly to business goals.


 Is TSP Compatible with CMMI and other CMMs?

 Yes. CMMI, the People CMM, and other CMMs are models of organizational maturity, expressed as expected characteristics or attributes that are visible at different levels of maturity. They describe the “what,” not the “how.” PSP/TSP comprise operational processes with an integrated measurement framework. They are the “how.” They all have the same goal, so to the extent that one of the models and the PSP/TSP cover the same area, they are generally quite synergistic.


 Do you have any information about how TSP can be used with CMMs?

A report that describes how TSP relates to the Capability Maturity Model for Software is available on the SEI Web site. A report that describes how TSP relates to CMMI will be published in the fall of 2004.


 Is the PSP beneficial in an already mature (CMM Level 5) organization? If so, how can it best be implemented?

 Both PSP and TSP can have significant positive effects on high-maturity organizations. The best references for implementing PSP and/or TSP into a CMM Level 5 organization are articles and presentations out of Hill Air Force Base and Northrup Grumman Information Technology (NGIT).

David Webb has published several articles about the Hill Air Force experiences on several releases of the Taskview project, including one coauthored with Watts Humphrey, and summary results from Hill AFB can be seen in a report by Donald McAndrews.  Presentations by NGIT’s president at the  2003 CMMI Technology Conference and User’s Group and by the technical leads at the 2004 SEPG conference (see the SEI SEPG Web site to order the CD), present results from what resembled a controlled  experiment having two very similar projects in a high maturity environment, with one project using PSP practices and one that did not.

In each case, because the organizations had Level 5 practices in place, the introduction of PSP and/or TSP was piloted and introduced according to the organization’s existing methods for evaluating new technologies for possible use in the organization. SEI has a standard introduction strategy for PSP and TSP that does not assume any particular maturity level, but it does implement high-maturity practices for such introductions, including role-based training, careful building of management support, running and evaluating pilot tests, and planning for broad rollout and support. See Appendix F of Winning with Software: An Executive Strategy by Watts Humphrey for more details.