Systems Engineering Management

A course presented over five days

presented by Mr. Clive Tudge CEng MIET, Mr Alwyn Smit Pr Eng CSEP or Mr. Robert Halligan FIE Aust CPEng


Over many years, experience has shown that projects have difficulty in delivering solutions to stakeholders on time, on budget and satisfying needs. The greater the problem complexity, solution complexity, and diversity of stakeholders, the greater the challenge has proven to be.

This 5-day Systems Engineering Management training course provides in-depth coverage of how to manage engineering projects to maximize project success, within the project's given constraints. The course establishes sound principles and provides effective methods to successfully manage projects, and for getting the best out of people, individually and in teams.

This Systems Engineering Management course will most benefit people who seek substantial knowledge and understanding of how to best go about managing technical projects, even more so those projects involving complex engineering.

Who Should Attend This Systems Engineering Management Course?

This Systems Engineering Management course is designed for individuals who plan, manage, control, specify or support the development or acquisition of products, including software products, or systems. The course will be of particular value to program managers, project sponsors, project managers and their planning advisers, project chief engineers, engineering managers, team leader, system engineers, software systems engineers, engineers of all other types, stakeholders in the product being developed such as users and planners, and those responsible for the development of policy and processes in the fields of management, development, acquisition, and supply.

The course will also be of value to anyone who interfaces with a project team and who seeks an understanding of how projects are managed, e.g. members of functional units that interface with a project team such as Quality Assurance, Configuration Management, Human Resources, Safety, Training, Contracts, Finance, etc.

To summarize, the course will be of value to anyone who may take on a role within, or in relation to, a project team.

Course Methods and Materials

The course is delivered using a balanced combination of video, presentations, workshops and discussion sessions. The workshops and discussions are focused on putting into practice the techniques covered in the presentations and the lessons to be learned from the videos.

The workshop sessions are used extensively to reinforce learning and to contribute to the development of understanding.

Delegates are provided with a set of comprehensive course notes covering the presentation material and workshop exercises, a two-disk CD-ROM of relevant resources, and other materials and checklists for future reference and use.

Course Availability

This course is available worldwide for public and on-site delivery (i.e. at client-provided facilities).

Systems Engineering Management Training Objective

At the conclusion of this course, delegates are expected to have a sound working knowledge of how to go about successfully managing engineering projects, and, after contemplation and consolidation, be ready to take on a systems engineering management role. Delegates will also be better equipped to work within projects, in any capacity.

Higher levels of skill and performance in a systems engineering management role will be attained subsequently through experience.


Key Questions

  • What is the difference between systems engineering management and engineering management in general?
  • Why is following the PMBOK not enough?
  • What is systems engineering and how is it relevant?
  • What are the skills, knowledge and attitudes (SKA's) conducive to success in conducting engineering projects?
  • What is the role of the engineering manager/team leader in ensuring these SKA's are in place?
  • How are system life cycle models relevant?
  • What is the relevance of waterfall development, incremental development, evolutionary development, agile, spiral development, lean, simultaneous/concurrent engineering?
  • What is the role of Project (Work) Breakdown Structure PBS/WBS in successful projects?
  • How can a PBS/WBS best be developed?
  • How does PBS/WBS relate to cost and schedule estimating and control?
  • What is EVM and how does this relate to systems engineering management?
  • What are the ingredients of risk? How may risk be controlled?
  • Where does opportunity figure?
  • How does PBS/WBS relate to risk analysis and risk management?
  • Why are requirements management, configuration management, interface management and data management fundamental to success?
  • How may they be accomplished?
  • How do we know that we have problems before it is too late to solve them?
  • What is the role of leadership in conducting successful engineering projects?
  • Does a relationship exist between personality types and performance in different project roles?


Systems Engineering Management Course Outline

Introductory video (before-after course hours)

1. The Value Proposition for World Class Systems Engineering and Management

The systems engineering management role must understand the value of systems engineering in order to make sound decisions regarding its application. The systems engineering management role will also often need to “sell” systems engineering to other stakeholders in the engineering, such as project management, customers and users. The terms management, project management, engineering management and systems engineering management are all defined in early chapters of the course. These definitions set the scope of systems engineering management as an activity, regardless of who does it.

2. Introduction to Systems Engineering

  • the concept of system
  • systems thinking
  • system life cycle processes
  • system life cycle models
  • systems-of-systems engineering
  • key features of excellence in systems engineering
  • key features of excellence in management
  • systems engineering principles and concepts
  • overall systems engineering process models
  • concurrent/simultaneous engineering
  • V model, Wedge model, Double-V model, Multiple V model
  • understanding the inputs and the outputs
  • defining the problem - requirements analysis
  • designing the physical solution
  • describing the logical solution - functional and state-based design
  • effectiveness evaluation and decision-making
  • requirements specification writing
  • system integration
  • verification
  • validation
  • specialty engineering
  • the role of cognitive systems engineering
  • workshop 1: systems engineering principles
  • EIA/IS-632, EIA 632, IEEE 1220, ISO/IEC 15288, CMMI systems engineering standards
  • key engineering artifacts and their roles
    • systems engineering plans
    • operational concept descriptions
    • system requirements specifications
    • software requirements specifications
    • interface requirements specifications
    • verification requirements specifications
    • architectural design descriptions
    • detailed design descriptions
    • test/verification procedures
    • records of test/verification results
    • validation plans/procedures
    • records of validation results
  • other potential artifacts
    • integrated logistics support plan
    • feasibility study reports
    • trade-off study reports
    • simulation reports
    • specification tree
  • Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) – languages & methods
  • systems engineering in a research environment
  • software support to systems engineering
  • hardware support to systems engineering

3. Introduction to Management

  • the role of management
  • basic concepts of management in general
  • "The Fifth Discipline" - systems thinking
  • value stream mapping

4. Introduction to Project Management

  • relationship to management in general
  • the role of project management
  • basic concepts of project management
  • the PMBOK
  • concepts of lean
  • concepts of agile
  • project management certifications

5. Introduction to Engineering Management

  • relationship to project management
  • the role of engineering management
  • engineering the engineering system

6. Introduction to Systems Engineering Management

  • relationship to engineering management
  • the role of systems engineering management
  • systems engineering within three different business models
    • internal project
    • development under contract
    • product development in anticipation of sales
  • tenets of systems engineering management
  • systems engineering management and PRINCE2®
  • systems engineering management and logistics support analysis (LSA)
  • systems engineering management and contract management
  • managing complexity
  • managing the development of safety-critical systems

7. Planning the Engineering Effort

  • styles of development and relationship to planning
  • waterfall, incremental, evolutionary, agile, lean, spiral
  • concurrent/simultaneous engineering/IPPD
  • engineering for modifications
  • incorporation of risk and opportunity into planning
  • major planning artifacts
    • project (work) breakdown structure (PBS/WBS)
      • types of PBS
      • why the PBS is a foundation of effective engineering management
      • rules in preparing a PBS
      • relationship of the PBS to cost accounts
      • relationship of the PBS to work packages
      • PBS (WBS) development pitfalls and pointers
  • developing a PBS/WBS
    • systems engineering plans
      • scoping SE - the SEP (SEMP)
      • why prepare a SEP?
      • how a SEP may relate to other plans
      • content of the SEP
      • how the SEP relates to ISO 9001
      • pitfalls in preparing a SEP
    • stage plans
    • product development plans
    • specialty engineering plans, e.g. safety, reliability, producibility
    • functional plans, e.g. test plans, system integration plans
  • costing the engineering effort
    • cost metrics
    • cost models, e.g. COSYSMO, PRICE, SEER
  • scheduling the engineering effort
    • event-based planning
    • sequencing activities
    • concepts of critical path, and critical path index
  • decision analysis and value/cost engineering
  • decision-making in engineering planning
  • constructing an EMV decision tree
  • using verification and validation
    • verification and validation terms defined
    • verification requirements
    • methods of verification
    • verification design
    • methods of validation
  • technical reviews for verification, validation, assessment and control
    • requirements reviews
    • principles of design review
    • architectural design review (ADR)
    • detail design review (DDR)
    • functional reviews
    • system-wide design reviews
    • test readiness review (TRR)
    • requirements satisfaction audits (FCA's)
    • design description (BS-BS) audits (PCA's)
    • technical reviews and incremental builds
    • administration of technical reviews
    • customer involvement in technical reviews
    • pitfalls in conducting technical reviews
  • planning pitfalls and pointers

8. Organizing and Conducting the Engineering Effort

  • knowledge, skills and attitudes conductive to high performance in the nine systems engineering process areas
  • alternative organizational structures – functional, matrix, project
  • types of teams: teams in general, product development teams, Skunk Works™, process cells, tiger teams, red teams, Interface Control Working Groups (ICWGs), Integrated Product Teams (IPTs).
  • IPT types and related issues
    • characteristics and products of an IPT
    • inside an IPT
    • when to use IPTs
    • workshop 5: IPT membership
    • team key success factors
    • achieving customer focus
    • challenges to IPT effectiveness
    • IPT formation and start-up
    • IPTs and the PRINCE2TM project management methodology
    • IPTs and data management, configuration management
    • types of IPT
    • team size
  • using product cells
  • using functional cells
  • keys to success
  • staffing the engineering organization
  • relationships to customer and supplier organizations
  • organizational pitfalls and pointers

9.Leading and Managing the Engineering Team

  • Video: Teamwork The Meerkat Way
  • teamwork and teams
    • team performance
    • team development
    • team characteristics
    • team problems
    • leading and coaching
    • interpersonal skills
    • Video: 5 Dysfunctions of Teams – Patrick Lencioni
    • The Pentagon Game – An exercise in team behavior
  • difference between management and leadership
  • Video: The 5 levels of leadership – John Maxwell
  • team processes and skills
    • innovation
    • problem-solving
    • decision-making
    • implementation
    • communication
  • motivation
  • emotional intelligence
  • Maslow’s hierarchy of needs
  • personality profiling
  • Video: The Business Case for Strengths – Marcus Buckingham

10. Requirements Management

  • selecting requirements analysis processes
  • requirements traceability in requirements analysis
  • requirements traceability in design
  • traceability from goals
  • integration with test or verification traceability - VCRI/VCRM/RTEM etc.
  • software tools supporting requirements management
  • pitfalls and pointers in requirements management

11. Design Management

  • selecting design processes
  • managing for innovation
  • managing design complexity
  • avoiding under-engineering
  • avoiding over-engineering
  • design traceability
  • pitfalls and pointers in design management

12. Configuration Management

  • what is configuration?
  • the concept and types of baseline
  • CM standards - EIA, ISO, etc.
  • the four fundamental CM activities
  • examples of CM implementation
  • pitfalls and pointers in configuration management

13. Interface Management

  • objectives of interface management
  • interface requirements
  • interface design
  • ensuring interface consistency
  • managing evolution of interfaces in complex systems
  • organizational aspects of interface management
  • pitfalls and pointers in interface management

14. Management of Engineering Data

  • objectives of data management
  • data modeling
  • tool data exchange
  • data management vs configuration management
  • pitfalls and pointers in data management

15. Knowledge Management

  • objectives of knowledge management
  • protection of new knowledge
  • lessons learned
  • communication of new knowledge
  • use of external knowledge - intellectual property
  • pitfalls and pointers in knowledge management

16. Engineering Specialty Integration (ESI)

  • what makes an engineering specialty special?
  • common engineering specialties
  • a general approach to ESI
  • organizational issues of ESI
  • pitfalls & pointers in engineering specialty integration

17. Managing System Integration

  • drivers to trouble-free system integration
  • system integration planning
  • role of integration testing
  • responsibility of designers
  • diagnosing the causes of problems
  • incremental system integration
  • integration test beds
  • metrics for the balance of work in a system integration phase
  • pitfalls & pointers in managing system integration

18. Managing Verification & Validation

  • project-wide V&V
  • requirements verification methods
  • design verification methods
  • system/subsystem verification requirements
  • system/subsystem verification methods
  • system/subsystem verification design
  • system/subsystem verification traceability
  • pitfalls and pointers in managing V&V

19. Managing the Development of Software-Intensive Systems

  • special issues for software-intensive systems
  • performance of alternative software development methodologies

20. Engineering Cost Management

  • tracking systems engineering cost performance - EVM
  • controlling systems engineering costs
  • pitfalls and pointers in engineering cost management

21. Time Management

  • tracking time performance
  • controlling systems engineering schedule
  • pitfalls and pointers in time management

22. Systems Engineering Performance Management

  • technical performance measurement
  • technical progress meetings
  • earned value management
  • integrated performance measurement
  • Six-Sigma revisited
  • pitfalls and pointers in performance measurement

23. Risk and Opportunity Management

  • the nature of risk
  • components of risk
  • the nature of opportunity
  • the five key activities of risk management
  • risk due to requirements
  • risk due to technology
  • risk due to complexity
  • integrating consideration of risk and opportunity into every aspect of the systems engineering
  • pitfalls and pointers in risk and opportunity management

24. Stakeholder Management

  • determining stakeholder interests
  • dealing with conflicting interests
  • ensuring stakeholders have influence
  • keeping stakeholders informed
  • reporting to higher level management

25. Other Techniques for Controlling Outcomes

  • qualification
  • integrated software support to product life cycle management

26. Release and Deployment Management

  • release management
  • deployment management
  • post-implementation reviews

27. Project Closure

  • archiving of engineering data
  • maintenance of engineering data

28. Continuous Performance Improvement

  • lessons learned
  • IS09000 Quality Management System
  • Six-Sigma driving improvement
  • CMMI
  • pitfalls and pointers in performance improvement

29. Professional Societies and Systems Engineering Education

  • International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE)
  • International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA)
  • national systems engineering societies
  • other societies with formal systems engineering interest areas
  • systems engineering in undergraduate education
  • systems engineering in postgraduate education
  • systems engineering certifications
  • internal systems engineering education programs

30. In Closing

About the Presenters

Mr. Robert Halligan FIE Aust CPEng

An executive professional manager and engineering practitioner, Mr Robert Halligan is known worldwide for his role in the practice and improvement of major projects. His work was initially with government and major transnational companies. For the last 24 years, he has worked in a consulting and training capacity, delivering an extensive training program on six continents.

Robert worked extensively in the United States and the United Kingdom. He was an Australian delegate to the ISO SC7 WG7 developing the international system life cycle processes standard, ISO/IEC 15288 and was a key reviewer of EIA 632 (Engineering of Systems) and EIA 731 (Systems Engineering Capability Model). He was a member of a small team which updated IEEE 1220 (Standard for Application and Management of the Systems Engineering Process). Robert was a member of the Board of Directors of the 7000-member International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE).

He has worked extensively in the interests of government and industry clients, developing and implementing acquisition and development strategies which focus on cost-effectiveness and risk reduction. Robert has also conducted numerous acquisition-related studies and management audits. He has delivered IPT training and facilitation for over ten years, including very large projects such as Australia’s P3C Upgrade program and ANZAC Ships program.

View Full Robert Halligan Biography


Mr. Clive Tudge CEng MIET

Clive Tudge is a professional Chartered Engineer with considerable national and international experience in senior project management, engineering management, and more recently, training positions in industry and government.

Clive obtained his College Diploma at the College of Electronics, which was then attached to the Ministry of Defence in the U.K. The Diploma qualified him as a Member of the Institution of Electrical Engineers (IEE), which is now known as the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET). Clive has been on the Committee of the IET in Queensland for the last 20 years, and for three of these years was the President.

Prior to arriving in Australia, in Europe Clive held many senior Project Director positions in the aviation sector on projects such as the Tornado, Jaguar and Hawk aircraft. In Germany, he was the Senior Project Director on a unique Fly-By-Wire Flight Control System for the Typhoon Eurofighter Project, and Project Manager on various systems for the European Tiger Helicopter.

In Australia, Clive has worked with many government agencies and industrial companies including Ansett Technologies, Datacraft, Queensland Rail, Brisbane City Council, Telstra, Optus, QANTAS, Defence Materiel Organisation (DMO) and Energex, helping to bring projects to a successful conclusion. Clive has founded, and has run, successful software development companies, completing complex software-intensive projects on time, within budget and satisfying customer needs.

Clive has been involved in all aspects of procurement from requirements definition and requirements analysis and through to operational support. He has performed roles from software engineer through to Project Chief Engineer and Project Director on multi-million dollar projects. Key skill areas include: project management, systems process evaluation, risk management, system engineering design and acceptance, systems engineering training, airworthiness analysis, communications systems, engineering change management, flight testing and systems process auditing.

View Full Clive Tudge Biography

Mr. Alwyn Smit B.Eng

Mr Alwyn Smit is a Principal Consultant with Project Performance International (PPI). Alwyn has a B.Eng. (Electr) degree from the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa, and is registered with the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) as a professional engineer. He spent the bulk of his career working in the South African defence industry as systems engineer and project manager on technology-intensive projects, most recently as principal systems engineer with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).

As a lead systems engineer, Mr Smit has contributed extensively to the development of complex technology demonstrators as well as the low volume production of weapon systems in the areas of anti-aircraft systems, radar systems, electronic warfare systems and specialised equipment for special forces application.

View Full Alwyn Smit Biography



Q. What is the difference between PPI's Systems Engineering Management course and PPI's Systems Engineering course?

A. The Systems Engineering Management course is 15% about doing systems engineering (in overview) and 85% about managing the systems engineering. The Systems Engineering course is the opposite - 90% about doing systems engineering (in depth) and 10% about managing the engineering.


Q. How well does PPI's systems engineering management training cover aspects of CMMI?

A. The systems engineering management 5-day course briefly overviews CMMI. The coverage is mainly overview, because the correlation coefficients between CMMI practices and project performance (cost, schedule and quality) average out at only +0.3. The average is somewhat higher for the complex projects. These figures tell us that CMMI is generally in the right direction, but that there is a lot more to achieving high performance in engineering projects than is represented in CMMI.

The reasons for the only moderate correlations could be that:
• systems engineering practices are not always beneficial; or
• CMMI is substantially less that an optimum representation of systems engineering practices (I believe this to be the case); or
• other factors dominate over systems engineering practices in achieving high project performance.

We are sure that CMMI is of value – the data proves that – and will continue to evolve and improve.

If the CMMI correlation coefficients were close to 1, PPI’s training in systems engineering would align very closely with CMMI. Until this is the case, PPI will continue to maintain broad alignment, but teach what actually works best, where there is a difference!

Interestingly, CMMI is least effective in the area of systems engineering management; two of the correlation coefficients are negative!

Reference: “A Survey of Systems Engineering Effectiveness”, CMU/SEI-2008-SR-034, December 2008


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