Process training and documentation

Subject: Process training and documentation
From: Rose -dot- Wilcox -at- aps -dot- com
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 21 Jul 2004 10:29:40 -0700

A while back, I sent a question about Corporate Modeler. I was
wondering if anyone had done any documentation and training on processes
using that specific tool. No one answered, so I'm pretty sure I'm on my
own with the tool. Then I noticed someone asking about processMax, the
CMMI tool. Although the approaches are quite different tool-wise,
there still may be some commonality of training and documentation issues
for CMMI levels. Other folks must be doing CMMI training (especially
since S-OX requirements can be mapped to CMMI levels) too.

Does anyone want to discuss creating training programs for moving
organizations from one CMMI level to another? I am currently doing a
needs analysis / requirements gathering to design our training for CMMI
Level II, IS-wide. From there I will move into design. We are also at
the same time, moving our process maps (done in Visio-based PDF files)
to Corporate Modeler which is a relational database that produced Word
or HTML output documenting the processes.

Previous training for the processes incorporated one big presentation
session along with individual CBIs. For the most part, the CBIs were
thought ineffective, although some groups (field services, for instance)
gave some good feedback on them as time savers as opposed to classroom
training. The push here is for classroom training.

My plan for design is to present the execs with three versions of a
training plan: Cadillac version, mid-sized version, and economy car.
The basic economy car version MUST get us to our goal.... which is
optimizing our processes to CMMI level II by next year. Luckily for
that date, we are scoped only to the Life Cycle processes (Planning,
Design, Build and Develop, Release to Production and Change Control).
Unluckily that is about 50% to 75% of the total training needed for CMMI
Level II and includes everyone in the company.

My approach is talking to each IS manager and finding exactly what each
group does within the Life Cycle processes. I want to slice and dice
segments of courses for our actual work flow and records management
tools, change control processes, and legal issues with business records,
along with the specific point of view per process required for various
groups (i.e., execs need overview, people doing large projects do
requirements and design differently than support does, etc.)

What I would like to find here is comments or suggestions on design once
I slice and dice this. After the Requirements matrix is done, does any
one have any tips on design or delivery... best practices, things to
what out for, hints and tips, gory war stories, anything?

P.S. If anyone else out there is doing process training or documentation
and they want to converse off-line that would be cool too! I do think
we are a small subset of technical writers at this point, but we are a
growing segment ....

Rose A. Wilcox
Center for Process Excellence, CHQ 8th Floor
Rose -dot- Wilcox -at- aps -dot- com
The character of some of our Congressmen has been such as to destroy any
social prestige that might otherwise have appeared to the position as
such. A man may be able to carry the hundred and first ward of Babylon
by an overwhelming majority, and yet not be just the person you would
like to see dancing with your wife. - William O. Stoddard, secretary to
President Abraham Lincoln

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