Specification Practices

Specification Practices

The increasing complexity of products demands, regulatory requirements, and potential for product liability actions place strong demands on formal engineering documentation. This is particularly true in the area of specification documents, an area with a high incidence of problems. Specification documents generally define requirements that a purchaser places on a contract or purchase order for a product, material, or service.

Specification documents take several forms, depending upon business orientation, local practices, and product applications. They range in style from formal requirement specifications for a complete product item to purchase part drawings for a component part.

Although comprehensive, the specification practices this section describes do not apply in all cases. They mainly indicate the extent of coverage that may be necessary for a very complex system. The specification preparer needs to apply judgment as to the extent of practices that may be necessary for a particular application, and possibly tailor the specification to the essentials required. Although these practices are generally required for military work, subject to the complexity of the product or service, they are also suitable for commercial work when properly tailored.

Reference Documents

    MIL-STD-490 - Specification Practices
    MIL-S-83490 - Specification, Types and Forms
    DOD-STD-100 - Engineering Drawing Practices
    MIL- STD-961 - Outline of Forms and Instructions for the Preparation of Specification
    MIL-STD 1679 - Weapon Systems (NAVY) Development
    DOD Document - Standardization Policies
    DSM 4120.3 M Procedures & Instructions functional areas.