Lack of acquisition guidance is a major concern for projects involved in the acquisition and sustainment of systems, including software-intensive systems. Over the past decade, much of the headquarters and field-level acquisition guidance for systems and software acquisition and sustainment has been rescinded, simplified, or reduced in scope such that only minimal acquisition-related guidance remains in many acquisition areas.
This reduction of guidance has occurred as system complexity and the software contribution to overall system functionality rises to unprecedented levels. Congressional- and DOD-level guidance continues to emphasize software acquisition process improvement, including the measurement of process performance by acquisition organizations.
The goal of this tutorial is to define effective and efficient acquisition practices, both directed internally toward the acquisition project and directed externally toward the monitoring and control of the selected supplier(s). These practices are intended to provide a basis for acquisition process discipline while balancing the need for agility.