The SEI helps advance software engineering principles and practices and serves as a national resource in software engineering, computer security, and process improvement. The SEI works closely with defense and government organizations, industry, and academia to continually improve software-intensive systems. Its core purpose is to help organizations improve their software engineering capabilities and develop or acquire the right software, defect free, within budget and on time, every time.
"One of the things that we found with DoD and federal clients is that these principles are a little bit new. Some of them feel good—they feel like they fit within the DoD culture—and some of them don't."
"One of the key things, if you're going to use Agile methods, is have enough definition up front of what you want to do, but not so much detail that you can't learn, that it can't change, because your environment changed."
"Agile is an evolving learning environment. So, you have the top-level requirements. But, then, as you evolve and learn more about it, different requirements will emerge. And, you need to verify those with the actual operational end user."
"This is a case where the cultural aspects of Agile are sometimes ahead of where some of the stakeholders are in the acquisition process. This working software principle really brings that to the forefront. "
Mary Ann Lapham
Mary Ann Lapham is the technical lead of the SEI’s research on agile methods within Department of Defense acquisition settings. In addition to leading the writing of several SEI technical notes on this topic, Lapham is also active in consulting with military service clients of the SEI’s Software Solutions Division on the use of agile methods within their programs. She has more than 30 years of program management and software development experience in commercial and government contexts.
Suzanne Miller Suzanne Miller’s research focuses on synthesizing effective technology transition and management practices from research and industry into effective techniques for use of Agile and lean methods in regulated settings like the DoD.