Looking forward to the Annual Systems Engineering Conference
You don’t have to start at platform 9 ¾
Systems Engineering is a methodology that has its origins in the management of large and challenging projects (like the landing on the moon in 1969) that bring together engineering teams from different disciplines. In a few words, it starts with a description of the desired functionality in abstract logical terms using a standardized modeling language in order to gradually arrive at the best solution over a number of formalized steps or stages. Sounds very academic – doesn’t it?
In fact, Systems Engineering used to be a mainly academic discipline for a long time, but with the growing complexity of today’s connected products and systems accompanied by technological paradigm changes (like the switch from combustion engines to electrical vehicles and traffic systems) – and the availability of easy-to-use off-the-shelf tools to support it, it is quickly moving into the focus of engineering teams as a means of managing complex systems.
If that sounds like an instruction to play the piano by simply touching the right key at the right moment, you are probably right: while the instruments are all there, Systems Engineering requires profound know-how and best practice to deliver on its promise. In other words, it needs experts who – much like a piano instructor – teach you how to strike the right key at the right moment.
A premier opportunity to meet qualified Systems Engineering “piano instructors” is ASEC 2021 by INCOSE, the UK’s premier systems engineering event.
My personal Systems Engineering journey
My personal systems engineering journey with Zuken started when I joined the company back in April 2020. Zuken had completed the acquisition of the Vitech Corporation, a leader in the model-based systems engineering market. The acquisition expands Zuken’s solution portfolio to include systems engineering, an area of rapidly increasing importance to product development companies.
When I look at what our customers are doing, I see that using a model-based approach adds more rigor to the engineering processes by enabling collaborative systems engineering across the entire organization in a real-time environment from a single source of truth, bringing together all stakeholders with the latest information, accelerating the design process, and eliminating errors.
Adding rigor to the engineering practice
Why would an organization embark on such a journey? There are many reasons, but the cost of failure is one common dominator. Speak to a systems engineer, and they have countless examples from history where an error in “the system” leads to failure, increased costs, delays, or in the worst-case environmental damage or bodily harm. What is widely accepted, is that the cost to fix an error increases exponentially through the product lifecycle. The requirement to deliver more complex connected products in less time is driving engineering organizations to shift towards the digital transformation.
Now that we think about it, ASEC 2021 is not some kind of Hogwarts destination starting from platform 9 ¾, it’s just another stop along the way. Whether you are making your first steps in the domain of Systems Engineering, or are an expert looking for easy-to-use tools to support your practices, I would be glad to meet you there. At Zuken, I work with companies improving their engineering processes through digitization. Successfully completing a digital transformation journey requires a trusted partner and this journey of a thousand miles or more starts with the first step. If your company is about to take this step or is already several steps along, Zuken can be that trusted partner leading the way into systems engineering and MBSE.
Take the first step and get up to speed with systems engineering thinking. Visit us at ASEC 2021:
Vitech GENESYS is an integrated model-based systems engineering software toolset that covers all four domains of systems engineering — requirements, behavior, architecture, and verification and validation.
This webinar will discuss the relationship between systems engineering, digital engineering, and MBSE in creating the framework we need to deliver complex products.