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Acquisition Program Resources

Systems Engineering Standards

ASSIST is the official source for specifications and standards used by the Department of Defense and it always has the most current information. Over 113,000 technical documents are indexed in ASSIST, and the ASSIST document database houses over 180,000 PDF files associated with about 82,000 of the indexed documents. There are more than 46,000 active ASSIST user accounts and over 6,000 active Shopping Wizard accounts. Managed by DLA Document Services, the ASSIST-Online web site provides free public access to most technical documents in the ASSIST database. The ASSIST Shopping Wizard provides a way to order documents from the DODSSP that are not available in digital form.

ASSIST-Online is a robust, comprehensive web site used by standardization management activities to develop, coordinate, and manage defense and federal specifications and standards, military handbooks, commercial item descriptions, data item descriptions, and related technical documents prepared in accordance with the policies and procedures of the Defense Standardization Program (DSP). In addition to DoD-prepared documents, ASSIST also has U.S.-ratified international standardization agreements, such as NATO STANAGs.

In addition, the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Systems Engineering (ODASD(SE)) represents DoD as a member of the U.S. Technical Advisory Group (U.S. TAG) for Subcommittee 7 (SC7), Software and Systems Engineering, of the International Organization for Standardization/ International Electrotechnical Commission (ISO/IEC) Joint Technical Committee 1 (JTC1), Information Technology. SC7 develops standards that encompass processes for Life Cycle Management for software and systems engineering.

  • ISO/IEC/IEEE 15288: Systems and software engineering–System life cycle processes (2015)
    ISO/IEC/IEEE 15288 establishes a common framework of process descriptions for describing the life cycle of systems created by humans. It defines a set of processes and associated terminology from an engineering viewpoint. These processes can be applied at any level in the hierarchy of a system's structure. Selected sets of these processes can be applied throughout the life cycle for managing and performing the stages of a system's life cycle. This is accomplished through the involvement of all stakeholders, with the ultimate goal of achieving customer satisfaction. ISO/IEC/IEEE 15288:2015 also provides processes that support the definition, control and improvement of the system life cycle processes used within an organization or a project. Organizations and projects can use these processes when acquiring and supplying systems. ISO/IEC/IEEE 15288:2015 concerns those systems that are man-made and may be configured with one or more of the following system elements: hardware, software, data, humans, processes (e.g., processes for providing service to users), procedures (e.g., operator instructions), facilities, materials and naturally occurring entities. This standard is available for purchase via ISO and agreement with IEEE.
  • ISO/IEC/IEEE 24748-4: Systems and software engineering–Life cycle management–Part 4: Systems engineering planning (2016)
    ISO/IEC/IEEE 24748-4 focuses on the processes required for successful planning and management of a program’s systems engineering effort. The standard provides a requirement for a Systems Engineering Management Plan (SEMP) as the key vehicle for representing a program's application of system life cycle processes. The SEMP describes the contractor's overall technical approach and plan for the conduct, management, and control of the integrated engineering effort. ISO/IEC/IEEE 24748-4 defines the SEMP content and recommendations for the format and should be used in conjunction with the Data Item Description (DID) DI-SESS-8178, Systems Engineering Management Plan, for development of the SEMP. Department of Defense adopted the ISO/IEC/IEEE 24748-4 standard on October 1, 2016. It is available for purchase via ISO and agreement with IEEE.