The Center Software Improvement Plan is a stand-alone plan. The plan is to be written, reviewed, approved, and concurred with by the appropriate engineering department(s) and Center management officials. Center policies and procedures are used to obtain specified reviews and approvals. Once approved, the Center provides a copy of the final plan, as well as updates, to the NASA Office of the Chief Engineer (OCE).
As called out in the requirements text above, the Center Software Improvement Plan will contain specific information. The following paragraphs provide guidance for the type of information to be included in the plan.
The following paragraphs are based on the content as outlined and specified in Appendix C of the NASA Software Engineering Initiative Implementation Plan (NSEIIP). The actual composition, formatting, and documentation method are optional and left to the Center to determine. Center plans are encouraged to utilize the numbering scheme and titles provided in the outline. The content outlines the method the Center will use to achieve improvements in software processes and products. Appropriate metrics are used to evaluate progress and areas of need. Additional sections may be added at the end of the Center plans. The Resources section below lists Center examples of plans based on the NSEIIP. , , , ,
- Process improvement goal(s).
This is a statement of the Center goal(s) as they apply to its objectives, with an indication of the overall benefit(s) to the Center.
- Scope of process improvement.
This is a statement of what is covered and what organizations and which personnel are primarily responsible for the overall improvement activities. At a minimum, this section specifies the plans for mission-critical software development improvements.
- Responsible Center organizations.
This is a section in the plan that identifies key management positions and involved organizations, a detailed description of their responsibilities, assignment of performing groups, and identification of the expected beneficiaries. It also provides the details of the participation by the Center software assurance organization.
This section in the plan is primarily a milestone-based description of proposed improvement activities, a discussion of the relationship among activities if they are phased, a discussion of the criteria to be used that indicate success and the passage to the next phase. It includes a discussion of how plan adjustments will be determined and executed. It distinguishes between phasing by classes and criticalities of software and/or by the sequencing of involved organizations at the Center.
This is a description of the primary individual charged with developing, executing, and reporting results against the Center's Software Improvement Plan. The NSEIIP refers to this individual as the "software champion." This individual is usually the Center representative to the NASA Software Working Group and may be the Chair of the Center's SEPG (Software Engineering Process Group). The software Management Steering Group (MSG) is usually responsible for providing plan direction and the support for its implementation.
- Progress monitoring tactic.
This section of the plan describes monitoring and review efforts to evaluate progress against the plan and the activity to develop adjustments to the plan to mitigate deviations occurring against the plan. The activities documented in this plan are monitored by the SEPG, under the direction of the Center's MSG in accordance with its charter.
- Strategies and objectives.
This section includes a description of the plan's approach to executing the strategies for software improvement.
- Strategy implementation tactics.
The section describes any needed facility enhancements, training curricula preparation, submittals to training calls, funding needs, and personnel requirements for executing the Center plan.
Appendix C of the NSEIIP calls for the dates, approaches, and milestones for executing the plan. The description of the schedule content also calls out specific information needs for the Center plan. It describes detailed activities and tasks, identifies the critical path, and presents milestones.
- Phase-in approach for new/modified requirements.
This section describes Center and SEPG activities to disseminate new methods and capabilities, revised requirements, and required training to software development engineers and teams
Additional guidance related to Center software improvement planning may be found in the following related requirements in this Handbook: