Raytheon Systems Engineer Sam Sauers and her team spearheaded one of the latest DevOps transformations on the program, introducing Silicon Valley-like processes like paired programming and pipeline development to help the Air Soldier team rapidly develop the technology.
“We’re using commercial software best practices, including Agile and DevOps, to get new capabilities in days instead of years,” said Sauers. “We’ve also been implementing user-centered design: getting ahead of the users and figuring out the next thing they’re going to need. We then develop toward that rather than getting something out there and getting feedback that it wasn’t what they wanted.”
“Air Force acquisition leaders recognized the current acquisition strategy, in progress since 2009, will not deliver capability to the warfighter fast enough. Today, we terminated the current AOC 10.2 contract with Northrop Grumman in order to take a different approach.”
“Once we field this platform and establish the software pipeline, we will begin the iterative improvement process,” said Sanders. “That’s where this acquisition process really makes a difference. The customers, in this case Airmen at the AOCs, are able to communicate their needs directly to developers and see the changes they request within weeks.
Original source: Airmen given direct access to AOC development process
Suggested metrics for DoD software projects to track, and what they mean
Original source: Defense Innovation Board Metrics for Software Development Version 0.9, last modified 9 Jul 2018
“It seems to me that in our meetings so far we’ve seen many many helper-types — supporters, planners, document writers, and so forth,” he went on. “But it’s a very rare event when we have a meeting with what I would consider to be programmers. One of my most fun questions is to sit in a room with 20 executives, shall we say, and say how many programmers and it turns out there’ll be two — of which one is being transferred for some stupid reason to some other base.”
Original source: Defense Innovation Board unveils ‘Ten Commandments of Software’
“The metrics can be broken down into four broad categories — deployment rate metrics, response rate metrics, code quality metrics, and program management, assessment, and estimation metrics. The DIB also provides general timeframes for what a “good” score looks like for each metric.”
Original source: Defense Innovation Board proposes new metrics for assessing DOD software development
“And one of the ways you make certain that you don’t have bad processes eat up good peoples’ ideas is you make certain that you remove the bad processes and organize for success.”
Original source: Media Availability with Secretary Mattis at DIUx, transcript
‘“There is no doubt in my mind that DIUx will not only continue to exist, it will actually — it will grow in its influence and its impact on the Department of Defense,” Mattis said in a press conference.’
Original source: ‘No longer an experiment’ — DIUx becomes DIU, permanent Pentagon unit
“For too long we have focused only on cost, schedule and performance,” Murray said Friday in his remarks. “We must now also focus on value. Value to the young men and women that will be operating the equipment we build, and utilizing the concepts we develop.”
Original source: Army’s newest command looks to the future from downtown Austin
“One of the problems that we’ve got — it’s not the problem but it’s a problem — you develop a piece of technology, we don’t have the resourcing flexibility to buy it.”
That means the Army is forced to buy a technology available today it thinks it will need in 2025, when what it truly needs hasn’t been developed yet.
“[Say] you came up with something new that I really need on the battlefield based on a threat, I have no ability to integrate that into my platform. So whether it’s buy, try, decide or adapt and buy, this allows us to test technology, put it in a demonstrative, experimental environment .… Maybe I want to give it to this unit that’s going to this particular place and get feedback, and then I iterate the whole Army.”