by , Blog, No Comments

Mar 15

Question: CMMI Appraisal – Has PIID completion [requirement] changed?

cmmi artifats

by Debbie OGrady, Blog, Comments Off on Question: CMMI Appraisal – Has PIID completion [requirement] changed?

Mar 15

This question was submitted by an attendee of our “Ask the Lead Appraisers” webinar. We received great questions from the group, so we decided to post the questions and our answers so everyone can benefit. The SEI-certified Lead Appraisers hosting the webinars and answering questions are Kevin Cotherman and Debbie O’Grady.

Question continued:  When we last performed an [appraisal Class]A (ML2) the LA spent time with us completing the PIID, on our last Class B (ML3) the LA was expecting the PIID to be completed prior to them arriving – can you clarify?


There actually is no requirement to have a PIID (Practice Implementation Indicator Description) completed either before or during the appraisal. The PIID document was created by the SEI to help organizations determine what artifacts to capture and also to be able to see when they are ready for the appraisal. The PIID is also used by the appraisal team members to easily determine what artifacts need to be reviewed for each practice. Some Lead Appraisers request the PIID be complete prior to the start of an appraisal as a way to determine the organization’s readiness. If the organization and Lead Appraiser decide to not complete a PIID prior to the appraisal start, then time will be spent by the appraisal team during the appraisal ‘looking’ for the correct objective evidence (artifact) for each individual practice  to show the practice is being performed as planned. When no PIID is used, the appraisal becomes a Discovery or Managed Discovery appraisal versus the Verify appraisal which is what is performed with the PIID. The Verify appraisal only needs to locate the specified artifacts and verify they are the correct artifacts to show the practice is being performed. Completing the PIID tends to be a burden both in resources and time for the organization so most Lead Appraisers will try to help the organization relieve some of the burden (Managed Discovery).

My personal preference is to have the PIID completed prior to the Class A appraisal. If a Class B appraisal is conducted, then the time can be spent there to complete the PIID. It will need to be reviewed closely and brought up-to-date prior to the Class A but the majority of the work will most likely be done during that Class B. As an additional benefit, the internal appraisal team members know and understand what is missing in the PIID and how to fix the Class B findings.

You may want to check out the tool “CMMI Live!”  It is a collaboration tool that has the side benefit of completing the requirements of objective evidence and the PIID as the organization uses it.

There’s a monthly Webinar that introduces the CMMI Live! tool and its benefits and features scheduled for and you can also ask for your own demo at

If you want to ask your own questions, you can ask in our contact us section. Kevin Cotherman and Debbie O’Grady will get them answered on the next ”Ask The Lead Appraisers” webinar – or if you wish to remain anonymous, just send us an email.


    Comments are closed.