Analyzing the cost of complying to the ECSS standards for software development
Conference contribution, 2010
Software for space applications has special requirements in terms of reliability and dependability. Standards are one of the primary mechanisms to ensure a sufficient quality level, with the European Cooperation on Space Standardization (ECSS) standards being the main ones. The use of standards is not only a benefit since they can incur considerable costs in terms of, for example, additional documentation and activities. For making the right decisions on which development and quality assurance activities to focus on it is important to know not only their added value but also their costs. Here we present a method for analyzing the cost of standard compliance (CoSC) in software development. It is based on a model which divides the costs into four different types based on their primary value: development, quality-adding, confidence-adding and adherence. The adherence costs are those costs that are incurred by or follows from the use of a standard but does not add any immediate value to either the functionality, quality or quality assurance of the software. Initial results from applying the method in an industrial company adhering to ECSS is presented.