Key Performance Parameters (KPP) are key system capabilities that must be met in order for a system to meet its operational goals. The Capability Development Document (CDD) and Capability Production Document (CPD) identify the KPP(s) that contribute to the desired operational capability in a threshold and objective format.  Each KPP is supported by operationally analysis that takes into account technology maturity, fiscal constraints, and schedule before determining threshold and objective values. If an attribute is considered important but not critical to meeting system goals, it can be classified as a Key System Attribute (KSA).

JCIDS Manual for the Operation of the JCIDS – Enclosure B, Appendix A

The threshold value of a KPP or KSA is the minimum acceptable value considered cost, schedule, and technology. Performance below the threshold value is not operationally effective or suitable. A KPP also has an objective value that is the desired operational goal considering cost, schedule, and technology. Performance above the objective value does not justify additional expense. The difference between the threshold and objective values sets the trade space.
All KPPs and KSA’s are validated by the Joint Requirement Oversight Council (JROC). Advances in technology or changes to system goals may result in changes to the KPP and KSA threshold and objective values which will have to be validated by the JROC again. Below are the list of mandatory KPP that every system shall have according to the JCIDS Manual – Enclosure B, Appendix A.

Mandatory Key Performance Parameters (KPP):

Guidelines for Identifying the Capstone Concepts Joint Operation (CCJO)-derived KPP:

  • Based on the primary mission of the system, does it contribute to one or more of the CCJO characteristics of the future joint force? For example, a bomber could contribute to multiple key characteristics: expeditionary, adaptable, and enduring/persistent; and an unmanned aerial vehicle could contribute to knowledge empowered, networked, and enduring/persistent.
  • Does the system have other attributes that contribute significantly to any of the CCJO characteristics of the future joint force? For example, the tactical data link on a fighter may contribute to the overall networked characteristic in addition to the primary mission of the fighter.
  • If the answer is yes to either of the above, designate at least one (if not more) attributes as a KPP for each relevant characteristic. It is not necessary to designate as a KPP every attribute associated with a particular characteristic, only those most essential to the capability.


  • KPP should be stated in terms that reflect the range of military operations that the capabilities must support and the joint operating environment intended for the system.
  • When developing KPP’s, make sure that they are testable and how they should be tested.  This is the only way to ensure that a system delivers the desired capability.  Having untestable KPP on a program causes a lot of confusion and instability on a program.  A verification cross reference matrix is a good way to understand how a KPP, KSA and other requirements are going to be tested.
  • Keep the number of KPP’s to around 5.  The more KPPs a program has the more performance, cost and schedule instability occurs.

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Updated: 7/27/2017

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