6.6. The Process Areas of CMMI
The full CMMI model contains 22 Process Areas, each containing a series of practices designed to accomplish one or more goals. As a general rule, each Process Area can be implemented on its own, independent of the others. Yet as you become familiar with the model, you'll find that many of the Process Areas in CMMI are related to each other, add strength to each other, and build upon each other.
You might find it helpful or handy to interrelate Process Areas by grouping them into functional categories. Using or even recognizing this grouping (which the SEI has used in the past but doesn't really push now) is not mandatory for model success, but you might find it's a useful way of organizing things in your head. The grouping is sorted like this: in the model, six Process Areas (PAs) deal with project management, six deal with engineering, five others deal with the support functions of project execution, and five deal with process management within the organization.
Here's how the PAs are organized by functional category.
In the following sections, I'll take a look at the Process Areas in CMMI and briefly describe the purpose and scope of each. The descriptions begin with an overview of the main objectives of the Process Area, followed by a summary of the specific goals defined for each PA, a concise core action statement, a category indicator, and a final list of the IT disciplines to which the PA applies.