VAIVA GmbH - Safe Mobility


ASPICE briefly explained and how to make the leap to level 3

Theresa Ley,

Over the last few weeks, we’ve been proudly reporting on our re-certification to ASPICE Level 2. What exactly ASPICE means, why it is so important in our daily work and what we need for level 3, Tom, expert for software test management, answers our questions.

What exactly does ASPICE mean and what is behind the different ASPICE levels?

Automotive SPICE is an evaluation standard for the maturity of development processes based on ISO 15504 (Software Process Improvement and Capability Determination) and specially adapted for the automotive industry. It is therefore not – as is often misunderstood – a process model.

Maturity is assessed on a project basis using capability levels, of which there are six (0 to 5). They build on each other, which means that a higher level can only be reached after complete fulfillment (full assessment) of the previous maturity level.

Level 0 – Incomplete: The project process does not fulfill its objectives, a qualitatively assured development of the software system is not given

Level 1 – Accomplished: The project process meets its objectives.

Level 2 – Coordinated: The project process is coordinated, which means that the process activities in the project are planned, monitored and adjusted as required. So the resource aspect is added here.

Level 3 – Established: A generic development process is established in the company. This is rolled out into projects through appropriate adaptation.

Level 4 – Predictable: The established development process is predictable, which means that it is possible to quantify necessary efforts within defined limits and to analyze causes for deviations from these efforts by means of collected metrics.

Level 5 – Innovative: The predictable development process is embedded in a process innovation process and is constantly adapted by this process to changes in the company.

Side note: There are currently only a handful of companies in the world that are Level 5 certified.  

Why is achieving Level 2 so important to our work at VAIVA and how do we ensure that we continue to operate at that level?

By achieving Level 2, we at VAIVA meet two elemental business objectives:

  1. customer satisfaction
  2.  fulfillment of the minimum supplier requirements

In VAIVA, we first ensure this through our standard product development process as the basis in the projects. Together with our DevOps team, we are constantly working on mapping, securing and further automating the implementation in our tool landscape.

In the projects, our technical experts help to fulfill level 2 in cooperation with the responsible subproject managers and quality assurance.

What is necessary to achieve ASPICE Level 3?

With our standard product development process and a QMS according to ISO 9001, we already fulfill some aspects that are necessary to achieve Level 3, especially since generic approaches and templates are constantly generated from the feedback and solutions of the projects. In addition to a generic process and corresponding templates, Level 3 will then require corresponding application and tailoring guidelines. The current goal, however, is to continue to establish Level 2 in the projects and to spread the associated knowledge among the employees.