The S1000D community is a big family – an S1000D project is a big family too

In this post, our Business Rules trainer Victoria Ichizli-Bartels claims that an S1000D project is a big family, however small the technical documentation department responsible for it might be. She also explains why she says that and why it is important during the business rules production.

One would expect a standardization community to be large. So, you would not be surprised to hear that there are hundreds of S1000D protagonists around the world.

But when it comes to a single S1000D project, many think that the people involved are not that many, especially if a given department assigned with the task has only a few individuals.

I have met several projects where there was only one person responsible for the S1000D part, acting both as a project manager and a technical writer, and certainly also as the CSDB (Common Source Data Base) administrator. Often there is more than one person involved, but arguably the teams seem clear and manageable.

But such consideration is often erroneous. Because it accounts only the persons, who work with the specification itself, those who have to decipher it to apply it to their project or organization.

However, if you find yourself explaining S1000D during working hours to someone, whatever the level of your explanation — top and brief or in-depth and detailed — then you can and should add that person or team to your S1000D family.

Even if a customer and the end-users this client organization embraces is not interested in learning about S1000D, you still have to count them in, because their requirements are also a part of the S1000D business rules for your project. One of these business rules will be, “Make sure that none of the S1000D specific codes or ‘jargon’ is visible to that particular customer and their users.”

Even inside the same organization, who is producing technical documentation, the S1000D family will go much farther than the tech-doc department. It will include the management you need to be convinced of additional investments in the extension of the CSDB solution your company uses. It will also embrace the design department providing you with the design data both in graphical and textual form, the Logistics Support Analysis (LSA) team providing all the information on configuration management and maintenance philosophy, but also the training department needing information and data from you to compile the training material.

Any interaction you have with the customers and the units, as well as organizations outside of yours, requires and includes decision making. And any decision made in respect to your S1000D implementation is a business rule.

So the lesson to learn here is to identify and be aware of your extended S1000D family for your product, project, program, organization, consortium, etc. And always be sure that the decisions you make and record in the business rules go in harmony with the requirements of all involved. And when they don’t then make all possible to bring on compromises, which in fact are solutions, that will restore the harmony and keep your project in balance.

S1000D implementations often demonstrate multiplication of change factors for various disciplines providing and consuming information to and from an S1000D environment. For example, if there is a change in a physical breakdown of a product, then this change can result in a change of maintenance philosophy, operation and maintenance procedures, as well as the content and possibly also presentation of the training material, and much more. All these changes will multiply in a technical publication.

So if S1000D embraces and shows the user all those factors, then it can also be the area to ignite the harmonization of all of them together. I don’t think that the S1000D is the first in the list of the so-called S-Series Specifications for the Integrated Logistics (Product) Support of the ASD (AeroSpace and Defence Industries Association of Europe) by pure chance.

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Looking to learn more about Business Rules in the world of S1000D?

Book your place on our S1000D Business Rules training course delivered by Victoria Ichizli-Bartels.

This course is for anyone who needs an understanding of the principles of S1000D prior to implementing the standard.  It covers the technical and business aspects of Business Rules and how to implement it and its implications for technical publications. Find out more.

About Victoria Ichizli-Bartels

Victoria has been working with S1000D since 2004, first for German Defence, then for a major S1000D software vendor and today as part of her own business. In the S1000D community, Victoria serves as the Business Rules Working Group (BRWG) chair since 2005.

To book your place call +44 (0)20 8722 8400 or email