Systems Engineering

Software Planning in the Systems Engineering Plan

The program Systems Engineering Plan (SEP) provides an opportunity to integrate software planning into the overall systems engineering planning of a program. This is critical to ensure proper allocation of resources, schedule development, and overall software understanding.

The following is a list of software topics that should be addressed in the SEP:

  • Address processor and computing system reserve capacity for throughput, memory, I/O.
  • Address redundancy management and fault tolerance.
  • Address software-related risks as part of the overall program approach to risk management. Specific attention should be given to addressing software estimating risks (underestimating size or growth, reuse erosion, less than expected productivity (more hours than expected per line of code), and undefined requirements.) as well as other computing systems and software risks.
  • Address sustainment planning (capability and capacity needs) in order to balance overall software acquisition and sustainment costs.
  • Describe how it will be assured that proposed reuse components are mature and suitable for the intended use; there is a full disclosure/understanding of any projected modification needed; baseline and configuration management is in place; and associated regression testing, ownership rights and licensing product assurance, and other risks have been addressed.
  • Describe the processes the program office will employ, as well as how the program office will support the disciplined application of established development processes by the contractor/developer team.
  • Describe the program approach to identifying the mix of software to be developed, modified, reused, or purchased.
  • Describe the program approach, including computing system and software impacts, for incremental capability development, verification, and delivery/fielding.
  • Describe the program plan for determining the location of software sustainment activities, required personnel, software development and integration environments.
  • Establish required support for specialized technology areas, such as information assurance or safety-critical systems.
  • Explain the program approach to applying Earned Value Management (EVM) at the software level to provide an objective measure of software cost and schedule performance.
  • How metrics are established, collected, and employed to manage the program.
  • How the Air Force core software metrics (size, effort, schedule, quality, requirements definition and stability, staffing, progress, and computer resources utilization) are used.
  • How the program office will organize and staff to manage the software acquisition, including the required staffing, training, and experience levels.
  • How the program office will use metrics and other methods to maintain appropriate insight into the contractor/developer team software development status.
  • Identification of computing system and software-related standards.
  • Identify the critical software-related technical review content and associated entry and exit criteria or identifying where this information can be located in other program documentation.
  • Managing expectations for software-enabled capabilities by describing how the program will establish, with high confidence, that the cost, schedule, and technical (performance) baselines are compatible and achievable.
  • Understanding the approach the contractor/developer team and program office will use to establish and manage software development processes and to commit to their consistent use through the Integrated Master Plan (IMP), Integrated Master Schedule (IMS), Statement of Work (SOW), and other documents such as the Software Development Plan (SDP).
  • Understanding the program approach to lessons learned, including how historical software size, growth, reuse, productivity rates, and developer capability have been used to ensure the current program is realistic and executable.

Software-related concerns to the SEP guidance, based on the DoD SEP Preparation Guide, Appendix B – Sample Format for Milestone B, System Development and Demonstration. Specific Section that includes software are; [1.1, 2.3, 2.5, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5, 4.1, 5.0, 6.1 and 6.3.]

AcqLinks and References:

Updated: 7/17/2017

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