Milestone B Statutory Requirements

Milestones are a point in time when a recommendation is made to the Stage Decision Authority (MDA) regarding the commencement or continuation of an acquisition program during the next acquisition phase. Milestones and milestone requirements are specified in DoD Declaration 5000.02, “Operation of the Defense Acquisition System.” The milestones are represented by triangles (Δ) with the letters A, B or C in the following figure. At this milestone, the MDA, if not already completed, will: Milestone B is usually the formal launch of a procurement program with the approval of the Procurement Program Baseline (PDB) by the MDA. APD is the agreement between the MODE and the Program Manager and his/her chain of command for collection, which is used for monitoring and reporting over the life of the program or phase of the program. The PDB will include affordability caps for unit production and sustaining costs. Affordability caps are set as fixed cost requirements that correspond to KPIs. APD`s cost, schedule and performance baseline should be at a high overall program level to allow for the flexibility to move requirements within and between versions. The objective of Step A (MSA) is to determine whether a program has met all of its requirements from the Hardware Solution Analysis (MSA) phase to the Technology Maturation and Risk Mitigation (TD) phase. The exit criteria are determined by the MDA and the acquisition category (ACAT). Here are some of the most common requirements: Similar to the custom list for Step A, the PMO, in collaboration with the MDA, must significantly customize the documents required to comply with legal and regulatory requirements. A proposed custom list of information required for Milestone B will be provided to AiDA in a future update.

For a complete list of required information, see DoDI 5000.02, Table 2. At 10 USC 2366(b), regulations (3)(E) and (3)(F) require the MDA to certify to Congress that an MDAP has completed sufficient logistical planning to provide an independent cost estimate and that the program has estimated the workload of the master repository before approving entry into EMD. The MDA-approved PALC B, along with the estimate of approved service costs, meets the requirements. The Program Manager (PM) projects the baseload of the repository (if any) with respect to the anticipated hours of work required in Step B to meet the MDA certification requirements that the program has met the requirements of provision (3)(F) of 10 USC 2366b (see United States Code). The Stage B decision approves a program to enter the EMD phase and allocate the necessary capital resources to support the awarding of contracts in stages. The requirements for this step may have been met at the time of the decision to issue tenders for development. However, if there have been significant changes between the two decisions that would alter previous decisions, these changes will be addressed as part of the Stage B review. Step B is another opportunity to reinforce key principles with MDA and stakeholder organizations by adapting the program structure and procurement processes to enable agile practices outlined in the acquisition strategy. This includes structuring, overseeing and approving publications with junior officials empowered to make timely decisions while providing leaders with regular overview of program progress and issues. Given the dynamic nature of Agile, one must be structured at a high enough level not to limit scope changes and to support iterative design and release development.

Risks should be mitigated to an acceptable level in order to continue within the DGU through the use of development versions to mitigate risks, ideally with multiple potential vendors. The TMRR phase should have provided the government with ample opportunity to become familiar with agile practices by understanding the unique environments for managing requirements, changes, parameters, government roles and responsibilities to contractors, responsive processes, release execution, and competing priorities and incentives. While Step B is a formal commitment of resources, the commitment is limited to each publication or group of publications if the contractor or program office does not make or demonstrate adequate progress. One of the main benefits of agile development is to regularly demonstrate the ability to work to users and other stakeholders. This gives the best insight into intermediate progress and shifts the focus from a document-based exam to one on maturity and delivery of skills. This review requires evidence that all sources of risk have been adequately mitigated to support a commitment to design, development and production. Sources of risk include technology, threat forecasting, security, engineering, integration, manufacturing, maintenance, and cost. All programs require validated functional requirements.

Full MDPP funding, affordability/program objectives demonstrated through technical assessments, and IEC are required for MDAPs and other category programs when requested. The Stage B decision authorizes the entry of the program into the EMD phase and the awarding of contracts for EMD activities. Following the precedents of a flexible approach to streamlining documentation set out in previous milestone decisions, there should be few additional requirements for this decision review. Agile program managers should continually socialize program changes with key stakeholders during the transition period between decision points. More frequent ongoing reviews and ongoing consultations with stakeholders create the conditions for effective decision reviews. The MA should focus on assessing the known risks and mitigation measures required to conduct iterative design, development, integration, testing and deployment activities that are specific to agile DMU activities. Because incremental feature deployment begins at this point, mitigation resolution is also tiered incrementally. In other words, while all known risks should be adequately mitigated for the next iteration, the allocation of resources for mitigating risks associated with future iterations of functions may be reduced or deferred until the results of legacy development activities are available.

These include technology, engineering, integration, manufacturing, maintenance and cost risks. Similarly, capacity requirements are refined with the highest resolution for short-term iterations. Milestone B is the critical decision point in an acquisition program, as it allocates company resources to a specific product, budget profile, supplier selection, contract duration, schedule, and sequence of events leading to production and deployment. When planning product support, many of these activities impact maintenance efficiency and cost. As part of the corrosion prevention and mitigation planning required under 10 U.S.A. Section 2228, the CPC maintenance processes required by DoDI 5000.67 must be included to mitigate the impact of corrosion on material preparation and maintenance costs.

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