Optimising Efficiency: Unleashing Operational Performance with CMMI Level 3 Baggage Handling System Suppliers

The successful operation of complex systems is dependent on two key components: the physical machinery itself and the software that controls it.

This is certainly the case with Baggage Handling Systems (BHS), which  are made up of two essential parts: the mechanical system and the software or High Level Controls (HLC) that must work in conjunction to reliably transport countless bags through an airport terminal.

In order to ensure that the software component of a BHS functions as intended, it is highly advantageous to work with a supplier that is CMMI (Capability Maturity Model Integration) Level 3 certified.

A Game-Changer for Airport Baggage Handling

CMMI is a set of guidelines used to develop and refine an organisation’s software development processes. A CMMI Level 3 certification signifies that a supplier has demonstrated a proven track record of developing high-quality software and meeting deadlines while adhering to strict processes and procedures.

Partnering with a CMMI Level 3 certified supplier offers many advantages, including a higher likelihood of timely delivery, better quality software and a more streamlined development process. Additionally, working with a certified supplier provides greater transparency into the software development process, more detailed progress reports, regular communication and increased peace of mind for all stakeholders involved.

“Having a certified supplier allows a customer to feel more confident that they are working within internationally recognised standards with trained personnel,” says Morten Granum, Software Director at BEUMER Group. “We have all heard stories of software not being delivered on time and not working once it was delivered.”

Understanding the Levels of CMMI Certification

CMMI certification is a process improvement framework that consists of five levels, each representing a different degree of process maturity. The first three levels are particularly significant as they represent a progression from an immature process to a well-defined and continuously improving process with a focus on proactive measures.

CMMI Level 1 – the organisation has no standard process, relies on individual staff efforts, lacks formal training or analysis of process performance, and focuses on completing tasks rather than improving the process.

CMMI Level 2 – the organisation has documented and repeatable processes for project management and product development, with trained staff and a data-driven approach to identify improvement opportunities and take corrective action.

CMMI Level 3 – the organisation has standardised procedures with established performance metrics, trained staff, and a data-driven approach to continuously improve processes with a focus on proactive measures to prevent potential problems.

Levels 4 and 5 of the CMMI maturity model are mostly used when working for the military, aviation or space organisations. For civilian and industrial purposes, CMMI levels 2 or 3 are sufficient and still you will be using elements of qualitative control (as in level 4) and continuous optimisation (as in level 5).

Organisations can use CMMI certification to assess their process maturity, identify areas for improvement, and work toward achieving higher levels of maturity. By achieving those higher levels, organisations can improve their efficiency, reduce costs, and provide better products and services to their customers.

“You have to take it step by step,” says  Morten Granum. “At Level 2, it’s very much project management. You have a plan and it might be different from project to project how you do it. The main difference at Level 3 is that the plan will have the same structure across the board.”

Why Level 3?

CMMI Level 3 certified suppliers offer a range of services to airports that distinguish them from Level 1 and 2 certified suppliers.

According to Per Engelbrechtsen, Business Development Director at BEUMER Group, CMMI Level 3 suppliers create trust with customers by demonstrating a unified approach that includes their entire organisation.

“They speak the same language,” he says. “And are certified according to processes that are then audited to ensure that they are followed and improved upon.”

Morten Granum points out that those certifications are done by an independent third party, not by the organisation itself.

“Somebody independently did thorough auditing and verified that the best practices described in the international standards were followed. This is the guarantee.”

In contrast to an ISO certification, which primarily focuses on the implementation of a quality management system, CMMI certification is a more comprehensive model that includes process areas such as project management, process improvement and software engineering.

As a result, CMMI Level 3 certification provides a more rigorous and holistic approach to software development and process improvement, which can result in better quality software and more efficient development processes.

Some of the benefits offered by CMMI Level 3 suppliers include:

  1. Enhanced process control: CMMI Level 3 certified suppliers have demonstrated that they have implemented more mature processes and are more proactive in identifying and resolving issues before they escalate.
  2. Better project management: CMMI Level 3 certified suppliers have a more rigorous approach to project management, including better tracking and monitoring of project schedules, milestones and deliverables.
  3. Improved quality assurance: CMMI Level 3 certified suppliers have demonstrated that they have effective quality assurance processes in place to ensure that software meets the airport’s requirements and specifications.
  4. Advanced metrics and analysis: CMMI Level 3 certified suppliers have more sophisticated metrics and analysis capabilities, allowing them to provide more detailed and informative reports on the status of projects and the effectiveness of their processes.

“Scalability is a significant advantage of using a Level 3 supplier,” says Poul Sloth, Senior Manager of Processes at BEUMER Group. “When you have a Level 3 organisation, you can still deliver very small projects while also scaling up to extremely large projects without relying on just a single person. This, I believe, is the primary advantage of Level 3 over Level 2.”

Getting there: The requirements for obtaining CMMI Level 3 certification

Obtaining CMMI Level 3 certification is a formal process that requires a supplier to demonstrate that it has established and consistently followed standard processes for software and systems engineering. The process of obtaining certification involves a formal appraisal conducted by a CMMI Institute-authorised Lead Appraiser.


To achieve CMMI Level 3 certification, a supplier must meet several requirements, including:

  • Demonstrating an understanding of its standard processes and how they are integrated into its work.
  • Providing evidence that it has consistently followed its standard processes over time.
  • Showing that its processes are well-documented and regularly reviewed for improvement.
  • Demonstrating that its processes are tailored to meet the specific needs of its customers and projects.
  • Providing evidence of its ability to monitor and measure its processes and products to ensure quality and customer satisfaction.

Achieving CMMI Level 3 certification is a significant undertaking that requires a supplier to have a strong commitment to quality and process improvement. It requires a willingness to invest time, resources, and effort into developing and refining standard processes, as well as a dedication to continually monitoring and improving over time.

CMMI Level 3 certification benefits a supplies customers in multiple ways:

  • Consistency: The supplier follows a repeatable process, leading to predictable outcomes and fewer errors.
  • Quality: Focus on quality management and improvement means higher quality products and services that meet or exceed customer expectations.
  • Risk Mitigation: Processes in place to identify and mitigate risks reduces project failures.
  • Continuous Improvement: The commitment to improving procedures and products/services leads to better outcomes for customers.

Overall, achieving CMMI Level 3 certification demonstrates a supplier’s commitment to delivering high-quality products and services and improving processes, benefiting customers with increased consistency, quality, risk mitigation, and long-term success potential.

“It’s about making an organisation capable of working together across trades, mechanics, electrical and software,” says Poul Sloth.

He continues by pointing out that it is a great advantage to a customer to get their software and other products from the same supplier.

“It simplifies everything because the implementation of the CMMI was done in such a way that everything synchronises within the entire project. Mechanical, electrical and other products go through the same reviews. A customer doesn’t have to match a plan from Company A with one from Company B and do some kind of translation. Everything is linked the entire way.”


Organisations that successfully achieve level 3 CMMI certification demonstrate a high level of commitment to quality, process improvement, and customer satisfaction, but the process requires a significant investment of time, resources and effort.

A CMMI Level 3 supplier can offer customers a higher level of confidence in their ability to consistently deliver high-quality software and systems engineering services. It can also provide a competitive advantage in a crowded marketplace, as it demonstrates a supplier’s commitment to quality and process improvement.

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