Improving the effectiveness and quality of requirements management in a major Government department
Client: UK Ministry of Defence, Defence Equipment & Support
The Defence Equipment & Support (DE&S) organisation within UK MOD is dedicated to the procurement, maintenance and sustainment of military capability. With an annual spend of £14 billion and a workforce of 20,000, DE&S equips and supports the UK's armed forces for current and future operations.
The effective management of requirements for military capability, and their decomposition into system requirements suitable for underpinning taut procurement contracts, is of fundamental importance to DE&S' mission. Recognising that the effectiveness of requirements management can be enhanced by the appropriate deployment of software tools, DE&S has invested in IBM Rational DOORS® as its preferred requirements management tool.
What we did
integrate was commissioned to develop a DOORS configuration which would support the DE&S's Acquisition Operating Framework (AOF) procurement processes. Given the size and diversity of the DE&S user base, an important objective was to provide a requirements management environment which would be intuitive to use, communicate using familiar terminology and which would support different roles and user maturities.
We started by identifying and analysing users' experience of using DOORS within DE&S. We discovered that many users were relatively unfamiliar with the concepts of information management and had little experience of using advanced software tools. Many felt they would be more effective and productive if they could be provided with a customised environment that semi-automated routine tasks. We also identified a substantial opportunity for improving compliance with DE&S processes through a templating approach.
Our solution was KEYPAQ for DE&S, a tailored version of integrate's KEYPAQ® suite of productivity enhancement tools for DOORS. KEYPAQ for DE&S comprises a combination of schema, DOORS extensions and application guidance which wrap around the native DOORS interface to provide a DE&S-specific environment, directly focussed upon implementation of AOF processes.
We then undertook a rigorous evaluation of KEYPAQ for DE&S, involving more than ten Integrated Project Teams over a number of months. The results of this pilot exercise demonstrated measurable improvements in the quality of requirements documents. Compliance with DE&S business processes improved, and users were delighted by the ease of use of the overall solution.
As a result of the successful pilot, DE&S embarked on a progressive rollout of KEYPAQ for DE&S throughout the organisation to more than 100 Project Teams.
During the rollout, comprehensive pre- and post-rollout evaluation took place in order to measure quality improvements resulting from the adoption of KEYPAQ, and to establish the opportunities to increase productivity and effectiveness, embed best practice, encourage controlled re-use and reduce training needs.
KEYPAQ is currently the primary means of accessing and managing requirements information in DOORS for more than 250 users across the organisation.
More information about KEYPAQ is available here.
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KEYPAQ® is a registered trademark of Integrate Systems Engineering Ltd