First Advisor

Sjodin, Rob

Thesis Committee Member(s)

Mason, Robert T.


College for Professional Studies

Degree Name

MS Software Engineering and Database Technologies


School of Computer & Information Science

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Number of Pages

89 pages


Department of Defense (DoD) acquisitions must improve program performance while working within budgetary constraints. The DoD community shows an interest in utilizing Agile methodologies, but struggles to reap Agile's benefits. They encountered challenges including the historically built up processes that enforce heavy-weight oversight; the outdated, manufacturing focused Work Breakdown Structures (WBS) provided in DoD Handbook: Work Breakdown Structures (WBS) for Defense Material Items (MIL-STD-881C); and the inability of the traditional waterfall based processes to accommodate iterative development. The author used the scientific method to review the documented issues encountered when using Agile on a DoD program within the constraints of Earned Value Management (EVM). The author developed the hypothesis that the currently available WBS options in MIL-STD-881C are in conflict with attempts to implement Agile software development methodologies and Agile Earned Value Management (AgileEVM) on DoD acquisition activities. Modifying MIL-STD-881C to include an iterative-based software development focused WBS would provide the DoD environment with a foundation to begin an overhaul of the current procedures and best practices to better support Agile methodologies and increase the adoption of Agile techniques. Based on the findings in this paper, additional research topics include: developing and defining the new WBS structure, determining what modifications are needed to other military standards, documented procedures, and best practices, and discussing the cultural changes needed to support and encourage greater use of Agile development methodologies in the DoD.

Date of Award

Spring 2013

Location (Creation)

Denver, Colorado

Rights Statement

All content in this Collection is owned by and subject to the exclusive control of Regis University and the authors of the materials. It is available only for research purposes and may not be used in violation of copyright laws or for unlawful purposes. The materials may not be downloaded in whole or in part without permission of the copyright holder or as otherwise authorized in the “fair use” standards of the U.S. copyright laws and regulations.