Reference document

TR 15504-6
Software Process Assessment Part 6: An exemplar system life cycle process assessment model


ISO/IEC 15504 provides a framework for the assessment of process capability. This framework can be used by organizations involved in planning, managing, monitoring, controlling and improving the acquisition, supply, development, operation, evolution and support of products and services. ISO/IEC TR 15504-6 2008 describes an exemplar Process Assessment Model (PAM) for system life cycle processes, conformant with the ISO/IEC 15504-2 requirements for a PAM.

The ISO/IEC TR 15504-6 2008 exemplar PAM is derived from the Process Reference Model (PRM) defined in ISO/IEC 15288, associated with the process attributes defined in ISO/IEC 15504-2. The resulting PAM is a two-dimensional PAM which provides indicators for guidance on the interpretation of the process purposes and outcomes as defined in ISO/IEC 15288, and the process attributes as defined in ISO/IEC 15504-2. It can be used to perform a process assessment conformant with ISO/IEC 15504-2, either in the context of a process improvement programme or for process capability determination.

ISO/IEC TR 15504-6 2008 describes

  • the overall structure of the PAM with its process dimension (derived from ISO/IEC 15288) and capability dimension (derived from the measurement framework defined in ISO/IEC 15504-2);
  • process performance indicators (base practices and work products) for 26 processes drawn from ISO/IEC 15288;
  • process capability indicators (generic practices, generic resources and generic work products) which characterize, for any process attribute of the capability dimension, what are the expected characteristics that demonstrate achievement of that process attribute.

ISO/IEC TR 15504-6 2008 also includes

  • the demonstration of conformity of the PAM with the requirements of ISO/IEC 15504-2;
  • the detailed characteristics of the work products and the generic work products;
  • guidance for adapting the PAM and defining additional assessment indicators.

Responsible Party





Flag Date RFC Version
added 1998-11-11 0.1
changed 2000-02-25 0.2
changed 2005-09-23 0.7
changed 2010-11-02 5
changed 2013-09-01 8
changed 2017-01-14 9-19 10
changed 2022-12-20 14-62 15
changed 2023-03-23 14-73 15