Ever feel like the world of technology is moving faster than the biggest software companies like Microsoft and Apple can’t keep up? Ever been in a meeting with a bunch of “techies” and not understand a word or acronym their off their lib’s? How about this- you are asked a question and with your reply they all look at you with dear in the headlight expression? Then in the back on the room and older gentleman politely explains to you and the group; With all due respect that system and software you described is no long sustainable and is not supported by any system. If you have ever experienced this, welcome to my current world.
Organizations that have had the foresight and encouragement ...view middle of the document...
In this paper the author will reflect on one program that has been in work for over 4 years with unknown date of being in sustainment. The project is to develop a data base to assist the end user a tool to help repair and modify aircraft.
The assignment of this project came with questions to management that they could not answer. The management was unknowing of the requirements and industry standards required for the data in question. What data and information that management could provide was inconsistent between one division to the next. The communication between departments and divisions was self-induced with the standard and non-standard systems. Software that was allowed on one system was not allowed on the other. The nonstandard and standard issues are key element throughout this product devolvement.
After an assessment of how the agency was structured to operate it was clear that even though they are ISO -9000 compliant the divisions did not operate in accordance with the processes. This allows the departments to function independently and develop work around procedures. These vertical and horizontal silos kept there processes and data changes on hard drives and decks top causing issues with change managements and configuration control.
The downsizing of the government forced staffing issues and qualifications of employee’s. Departments were understaffed; key position in many cases, choke points in the process caused by staffing being one deep. Many staff members were task saturated, doing other members jobs so that they could do their own. The frustration is high resulting in high turnovers and a retraining in many cases. The subject matter experts were few and far between, they could be better classified as jack of many trades master of none.
Software and systems were archaic. System failures, licenses issues, patchwork problems in many cases caused work stoppage a weekly occurrence. Work was saved on desk tops, cd, and hard drives adding to the communication and production level of the work force issues.
A narrative of what this project was up against has been disclosed. The best approach to this project is unknown at first by the author. While assessing the repair manuals which were all paper manual’s a question arises, “Why has this agency not which to electronic pubs”? After addressing this question to management, a new scope to the project took shape. Provide a live single point working data base that can be used at all levels of maintenance, manufacturing, modifications and training with no budget, staff and knowledge.
Screening of the four end units the data base would be supporting resulted in only one having any serviceable data. The data was nonstandard in accordance to the industry and Society of Automotive Engineers Aviation Division (SAE standards). The configuration was not correct and did not represent the end unit. Buy in and support was needed develop at a small scale product produce a sample product....