The 881C templates have been desired heavily by PRICE users long before PRICE even knew who I was. Now that I’m here, have a year under my belt, and have the template number approaching the century mark, I think it’s time I updated everyone on what’s going on and the plan moving forward.

First off, let’s take a minute to fill everyone in. The PRICE templates are based on the widely used MIL STD 881C product breakdown structures. In other words, these templates are projects that the cost research team made in TruePlanning® to model helicopters, fighter jets, battleships, tanks, etc. The data they utilize originates from projects within the PRICE archives. There are two types of project files: templates and test cases. The templates are a normalized version of the data we have accumulated over decades and put on our server in order to give our customers a solid starting point for estimating their own projects. Test cases created by the cost research team model a real life military project using the template and publicly available data. Test cases serve two purposes:

  • They serve as quality control to point out potential flaws in the template.
  • They serve as validation of our templates’ utility when they are close to the recorded cost.  

As of this blog post, over 90 unique project files spanning every 881C category except for electronics have been uploaded to our server. The last thing we want to do is lead our customers astray, so these project files go through multiple levels of verification and oversight. The quality control team includes multiple members of the cost research team as well as the senior leadership of PRICE. When shortcomings are found, we correct them based on the guidance of subject matter experts and, in some cases, create subsidiary templates for 881C categories. An example of this would be that for aircraft, we have three templates (fighter aircraft, subsonic aircraft, and rotorcraft). This is done to not only show off the versatility and utility of our software (being able to estimate “paperclips to spaceships” is kind of our thing), but to make the templates as user friendly as possible.

If you don’t see a template that you desire when you enter the server, don’t worry about it. Chances are at least one of us in the cost research team is working on something related to it. We are constantly expanding the template base and plan to keep adding to our template library for some time. It is actually my personal goal to create a solid estimate for everything that is even arguably “cool.” This is why in addition to having something for this:

I have something for this:

And may do something for this:


However, if you do have any suggestions on you would like to see from us in the near future, please comment below. For a greater description on how to use the templates, check back for my next blog.