Best Practices in User Needs/ Requirements Generation   [open pdf - 14MB]

"A process framework for the front-end of product development was developed. The framework covers the process space from an initial need (or recognition of need) to the decision for a product/development program launch. The framework focuses on the activities required for the development of requirements needed for an investment decision. The framework was developed through a thorough examination of the literature relating to product development and addresses not only the activities required to traverse the front-end, but also metrics and a process maturity matrix by which an organization can be evaluated. Using case studies of the front-end processes of eight commercial organizations and eight military organizations in addition to the US Air Force, the framework was tested. All of the organizations demonstrated the existence of the four fundamental activities contained in the framework but an examination of the existing process enablers revealed various interpretations of required features. The maturity matrix was used to evaluate each of the organizations (commercial and military) relative to the front-end process in the framework. The analysis revealed a significant gap between commercial and military process performance. The existence and application of the process enablers was significantly correlated with the organization's performance in the four process activities of the framework. The implications of the research indicate that military organizations need to reevaluate their current practices in the front-end and the application of process enablers within their organizations. Further, military organizations should reexamine if the current process structure for system development in the front-end need significant changes."

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Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC): http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/
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