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Configuration Management Strategies

Integrate flexibility, handle complex projects with The Trailing Baseline.

By Seb Klabes, 6/10/2018

The engineering design process converts conceptual ideas into configuration items. These configuration items represent the design solution. Different project lifecycles place unique demands on this process.

Thus, the longer you wait for the conversion, the more flexibility there is with which you can align your conceptual ideas into a valid design baseline. However, the delivery deadline of your solution constrains that flexibility.

So, let me ask you something. Of all the projects in which you are currently involved, in how many of them did you deliberately decide upon a configuration management strategy?

If configuration management is a burden, or if you have lost all control of it, you most likely chose an inappropriate strategy. So, how do you choose the correct one?

First, you must ask yourself the following questions: 

1.) How many changes do you expect will be introduced by your stakeholders (e.g. customers, regulators etc.)?

2.) How big are these changes likely to be?

3.) How mature is the technology you are working with?

4.) What is your integration strategy?

5.) How much experience does your team/organisation have on this technology?

6.) Do you have a distributed, or co-located project team?

7.) Have you considered the development and manufacturing depth?

Once you have fully explored these questions, you are able to choose a suitable configuration management strategy based on your answers.

For example, the ‘Trailing Baseline’ is a strategy that allows for items to be put under configuration control as late as possible. This is an optimal fit for projects with high uncertainty, high variability, integration “with the stream”, and deep development depth of your co-located engineering organisation.

If you have not done so yet, critically consider the configuration management strategy in your project and adapt it to your unique needs.

On this course, we can help you do that.

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