A Key System Attribute (KSA) is a system capability considered crucial in support of achieving a balanced solution/approach to a Key Performance Parameter (KPP) or some other key performance attribute deemed necessary by the sponsor. KSA are listed in the Capability Development Document (CDD) and Capability Production Document (CPD) with threshold and objective values.  They provide decision makers with an additional level of capability performance characteristics below the KPP level.

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

The threshold value of a KSA or KPP is the minimum acceptable value considered cost, schedule, and technology.  Performance below the threshold value is not operationally effective or suitable. A KSA 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.

Mandatory KSA

  • Availability: A measure of the degree to which an item is in an operable state and can be committed at the start of a mission when the mission is called for at an unknown (random) point in time.
  • Reliability: The most common measures of reliability is Mean Time Between Failures (MTBF) or Mean Time Between Maintenance (MTBM).
  • Ownership Cost: See Total Ownership Cost (TOC)

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Updated: 7/27/2017

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