Building a House with a Limited Tool Set: Overcoming the Challenge of Incorporating Usability in the Acquisition Process
Building software can be compared to building a house. The software product must start with defining requirements prior to writing the first line of code. Likewise, with building a home, a home buyer must approve a design with the architect, and work to establish the requirements before laying the first brick. Unfortunately, in the Department of Defense (DoD) acquisition process, the Government procurement organization is often limited in its ability to be an architect to promote a more usable product. The ability to influence design is often diminished to DoD standard compliance requirements, limiting the tools available to promote usability. To overcome this, we developed a process to better understand derived system requirements for a space asset command and control contract. We implemented a collaborative process between the Government and Developer teams, including the operational user to promote system usability. Positive design outcomes suggest utility in the process.
KeywordsSpace Usability Design
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