Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Scott Drylie, PhD


Software development research, once a priority for the DoD, has received less focus in recent years. What research that has occurred has focused on size and cost prediction of software. Generally lacking in these studies is analysis on phase distributions and schedule. Putnam (1978) showed that there were measurable effects between early program management and final schedule growth, but these relationships have not been explored using the 2001-2021 DoD Software Resources Data Report (SRDR) database. Additionally, industry software development guidance provides rules of thumb for effort allocation, but a comparison of the rules to DoD software projects is nonexistent. This thesis seeks to understand how the development phases of software interact with each other and with final outcomes of schedule and effort, as well as provide guidance for the program manager and developer. Using least square models and Hotelling's T2 test we evaluated conventional rules of thumb for effort allocation against projects in the SRDR database. Given the variation in the data, we find that multiple rules of thumb are applicable to DoD software development. We then compared how the effort allocation varies between projects with either high or low schedule growth. Our analysis shows that increasing effort in early phases decreases the total schedule growth. These finding were significant across multiple categories such as developmental process type, Service, and project size.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number