BTW the fail-STF elite I have seen where mostly due to execution, the DPS requirements, even for the optionals, are not that steep.
The main STF that's failable with poor DPS is KASE, in my experience, thanks to the giant pile of HP sponges; that's the main reason my Sci is in a Defiant-R for STFs (also because I'm too cheap for an MVAE atm) - you don't need to crowd-control what's dead, any escort can carry emergency TB/Rs anyways (and the MVAE has that LtCdr sci), escorts can crossheal each other against just about everything but the doomtorp, and all the GW/TBR in the world won't help munch through the transformers or gates like a good rack of guns with APB and Sensor Scan will.
It may be a bit of an epeen contest, but the space STFs really are about max damage all the time at almost all levels. Until it gets fixed, don't whine about people propagating a truth, whine about the idiots who can't design a good raid.
It could be worse though, I guess - your loot could be based more-or-less entirely on damage out like SB24 :/
(Also for what it's worth, in CSE the first time I'll go "Tac Fleet Tac Init ALL BUFFS NAO" is generally once the first cube goes down; the others get allbuff mode if it looks like we need it, etc. No point waiting for the tac cube to spawn if someone stuffed the nanite gen sync and the crowd control is strained ...)