Slashdot | QA != Testing: "Having worked in a CMM 3 company for a couple years, my opinions of the thing are quite different: CMM, and processes in general, are a tool that managers use to offload their work on the engineers.
We used to spend vast amounts of time peer reviewing all sorts of useless documents, making estimates for project planning, and so on, additionally to the architecture and coding work.
This didn't do anything at all for quality. Deadlines slipped like always (often more, because of the time lost to irrelevant stuff). Spec documents were just as Ground-Control-To-Major-Tom-like as usual.
It did, however, give the managers the warm fuzzy feeling that overcomes control freaks everywhere when they're sure they can track, number, file and index everything that goes on around them. Without having to do any actual work. Without even knowing the first thing about the product we were making (without CMM, a prerequisite for anyone attempting to write any sort of project plan).
One of our line managers admitted all of this quite openly, one of his favourite sayings was 'Since we have processes, I can go home at four every day'. We didn't. We got to stay till 8."
someday i'll be manager and with cmm level 5 and make all my engineers stay until midnight!