2.5.6 The project shall define the milestones at which the software supplier(s) progress will be reviewed and audited as a part of the acquisition activities.
Known contract milestones are expected to be included in the resulting contract.
1.2 Applicability Across Classes
Class D not Safety Critical, and Class G are labeled with "P (Center)." This means that an approved Center-defined process that meets a non-empty subset of the full requirement can be used to achieve this requirement.
Class F is labeled as "X (not OTS)" which means that the project is required to meet this requirement for all software that is not considered off-the-shelf.
For software development that is acquired (supplied by a contractor), having regular progress reviews is even more important since these reviews are the keys to ensuring the contractor understood and will provide the product that NASA requested and that meets NASA's requirements for safety, quality, reliability, etc.
Milestone reviews can also serve to facilitate and ensure coordination between multiple development groups including development groups at multiple NASA Centers and contractors.
For acquired software development, milestone reviews are incorporated into the contract because the contract is the binding document for contractor performance and deliverables. Regardless of whether the development is in-house or contracted, the development agreement needs to contain, among other key elements, surveillance activities including monitoring activities, reviews, audits, decision points, meetings, etc.
Other items related to milestone reviews to include in the development agreement are:
- Process Monitoring and Control (PMC).
See the 7.3 - Acquisition Guidance and 7.9 - Entrance and Exit Criteria topics in this Handbook for additional guidance on this topic. The references in 7.3 - Acquisition Guidance may provide additional guidance on project milestone reviews and topics for consideration. Topic 7.9 - Entrance and Exit Criteria describes inputs, material that will be reviewed, and outputs for each life-cycle milestone review which may be useful as input to the development of checklists for these reviews. Consult the NPR 7120 family of requirements documents for definitions of milestones and approaches for different project types.
Keep in mind that reviews not included in the contract, may be difficult to require of the contractor, so it is important to ensure the
SOW and other contract elements are reviewed by the proper project management and/or technical authority for completeness.
4. Small Projects
6. Lessons Learned
A documented lesson from the NASA Lessons Learned database notes the following: