1. Identification and engagement of the resources needed for the Inception and Elaboration phases of the release. This applies to a) designers, b) senior developers, c) the system architecture team and d) the system engineer. Identification and engagement includes the completion of any contracts required for the involvement of a role and their commitment of time against the schedule throughout Inception and Elaboration.
2. Identification of release use cases and their allocation to subsystems down to service groups. These should be completed to a level of detail sufficient to allow the design team to understand the core functionality they are responsible for, and are subject to management team review and prioritization. Use cases should be completed during the early part of Inception, along with activity/sequence diagrams that describe them.
3. Allocation of existing requirements against the use cases and the identification of classes of missing requirements that must be addressed during the early phases of the release. Classes of missing requirements means evaluation of the requirements against the service groups and use cases to look for broad holes that need to be filled.
4. Completion and management review of an Inception Plan that includes a resource-loaded schedule and identification of ListITs for each iteration of Inception, with the level of detail decreasing for later iterations. ListITs must include both design work and use case/requirement elaboration. A plan and schedule to address resource shortfalls must be included.
5. Training of new roles about architecture and all roles about the use cases and initial requirements for the release.
Step 1, part of 2 (i.e., identification of use cases), and 4 are the minimum required to enter a release, with failure to complete requiring the delay of its start and the recognition that resources will have to be available during early Inception to complete 2, 3 and 5.