For more than 40 years, the SI has been providing mission-focused, full life cycle Systems Engineering and Integration (SE&I) support to deliver highly interoperable and effective solutions for our customers.
The challenges of managing the technical and programmatic complexity and interdependency of government programs often drive the need for an integrated enterprise requiring a valued and solid enterprise-wide SE&I contractor. The SI excels at providing the four basic tenets of enterprise success:
- Enterprise-wide perspective on the mission
- Deep and broad domain expertise, with a true understanding of how each system-of-systems works
- Effective relationships with all the mission partners, including the development community
- Trusted relationship with the customer allowing the SE&I team to operate across the enterprise to the benefit of the mission
Our approach encompasses both technical and management disciplines to bring together disparate functional elements, configuration items and segments into larger systems.
The technical aspects of our approach encompass our systems engineering methodology:
- Identify customer needs and required functionality early in the development cycle
- Document requirements and provide traceability down to the lowest level
- Monitor, assess and validate segment development efforts to ensure system closure Account for the business and the technical needs of all stakeholders with the goal of providing a quality product that meets the needs of the end user
The management portion of our systems integration methodology includes:
- Advanced planning to establish the vision and approach to be followed over the life of the program
- Program management to instill the disciplines for executing the program, prioritizing resources across projects, and managing the overall costs and risks of the program
- Configuration management to provide the technical and administrative means to identify, control and manage changes to program and project baselines
- Application of our best practice systems engineering and management processes
- Ensuring that the work products meet the organization quality objectives and user expectations to achieve mission success
Mission Needs Analysis / User Needs Analysis
Mission needs analysis and user needs analysis encompasses identifying the stakeholders, establishing and analyzing the mission level capabilities and requirements, describing how the system is intended to operate, and defining the metrics (measures of outcomes, effectiveness and performance) used to assess the mission results achieved. The end result is that the stakeholder needs are translated into a verifiable set of high-level operational requirements defined within the program constraints (e.g., cost and schedule) that will meet the mission needs.
Requirements and Architecture Development
Requirements development decomposes and allocates the user and mission needs into functional, performance and design requirements. These requirements are analyzed and then used to specify the system in sufficient detail so that it can be designed and built. Architecture definition provides a graphical description of a system and its components, interfaces, functions, performance and behaviors. The products used to define the architecture may be based on specific architecture frameworks (e.g., DoDAF, FEAF) or specific methodologies (e.g., IDEF, SysML, UML).
Technology planning aligns your organization’s goals with technology solutions to help achieve those goals. It assesses those areas where technology needs to be applied, an evaluation of technology alternatives, how the technology will be developed and assessed through the development timeframe, and a decision process for technology insertion into the baseline.
Verification and Validation
Verification ensures the as-built product meets all of its requirements under all specified conditions or per the test scenarios defined in the requirements documentation. Meanwhile, validation confirms that the defined system requirements result in a system that is effective, meets all stakeholder expectations, is suitable for its intended use in an operational environment, and that the life-cycle support products (e.g., training, operator manuals, logistics, maintenance procedures) are in place and adequate for system operations.
Readiness and Transition to Operations
The readiness review process provides an independent, systematic and coordinated review of program status at critical points in the program. These points are usually transition milestones from one phase of the development cycle to the next, including a final review prior to transition to operations. The objective of this step is to move the system acquisition in an orderly, planned manner from the development phase to the operational phase, ensuring that the system is functional, operable and compatible with other operational systems.
Support to Operations
The SI’s support to the operations and maintenance phase of a system’s life cycle includes O&M management; anomaly investigation, tracking, and closure; and system retirement planning.
Program and Project Planning
Proper program and project planning ensures that the applicable management disciplines and methodologies are integrated over the life of the program and associated projects. Program plans will provide a foundation for project plans, identifying staffing, skills, tools, historical performance data, planning requirements and methods. Project plans for the program are developed, coordinated, and confirmed based on identification of cost, schedule, technical and risk components.
Program management is the process of managing several related projects, often with the intention of improving an organization's performance. Program management focuses on the aggregate result or end-state and emphasizes the coordinating and prioritizing of resources across projects, managing links between the projects and the overall costs and risks of the program.
Quality assessment ensures that work products meet the organization’s quality objectives and achieve mission satisfaction. This process includes executing baseline reviews, controls and analysis, as well as conducting engineering reviews.
Configuration Management (CM) provides the technical and administrative discipline to identify and control a program’s and project’s data and baseline over the life of a contract. This includes CM of requirements, schedules and data, as well as the control of changes to the baseline impacting each of these items. It involves developing, documenting and executing processes to identify items to be placed under configuration control authority, managing change through disciplined and repeatable processes, providing reports through status accounting mechanisms, and performing functional and physical audits of the configuration baseline to verify conformance with approved changes. The SI helps customers provide configuration control through the execution of a Configuration Control Board (CCB).
Process Engineering and Management
The SI has complete knowledge of all of the best practice engineering and management disciplines required to perform effective integration of systems, system-of-systems or enterprises based on the successful development and application of these disciplines over the past 40 years to a variety of government organizations. Detailed first-hand knowledge, understanding, utilization and certified practitioners of the Capability Maturity Development and Service models (CMMI-DEV/SVC) currently used as the engineering standard across the SI. Involves identifying all of the critical activities provided by an organization in support of a project or program, defining processes for the uniform, standardized, repeatable execution of those tasks, implementing metrics and measures to monitor for the delivery of those processes, conducting periodic audits to ensure the processes are being delivered as defined, and providing a process to evaluate and identify improvements to processes that are less than efficient.
Acquisition planning takes a statement of need (or system requirements document) and produces a comprehensive acquisition plan that life cycle costs, acquisitions should cost, needed capability or performance level, delivery or performance period requirements, trade-offs, risk and tailoring. It also includes a plan of actions that identifies potential sources for the acquisition, competition requirements, sourced selection procedures and contracting consideration. It will include budgeting and funding needs and sources of that funding, and it will address contractor versus government sources for acquisition. The plan covers make vs. buy decisions, mandatory legal or environmental requirements, and major milestones for the acquisition period.
Executive Office Support
Support to government executive and program offices and includes:
- Office-wide action item assignment, tracking, data collection, consolidation and reporting
- Senior management presentation creation
- Offsite facilitation
- Conference planning and execution
- All-hands planning and execution
- Budget preparation
The following technical papers were published at the 23rd Annual Internationl Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) Symposium.