Price: $1,999.00

Length: 2 Days
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Specifications Writing for Engineers | Workshop

Efficient specifications writing for engineers is not easy, which is why training is essential.

It’s difficult because specifications writing draws on so many diverse topics, such as project management, engineering practice, law, civics, grammar, word usage and even philosophy.

Most experts agree that a key to successful specifications writing is giving your tech spec a purpose before ever starting to write.  A well thought out tech spec is a tool that works on your behalf, making your job easier and your feature better. It has a purpose  —  improving intra-team communication, for example, or anticipating and addressing stakeholder concerns. A tech spec without a purpose is a waste of time.

Define purpose before you start writing. Ask yourself what you hope to achieve through this tech spec. Making this decision beforehand streamlines the writing process and ensures the spec will have value to its readers. Your answer will be the foundation of your tech spec, determining attributes like technical detail.

A thoughtful, well-written tech spec unlocks many benefits, such as bug-free releases (or nearly so). A thorough tech spec exposes broad ideas (and often low-level implementation details like endpoint names and error codes) to a wide audience, maximizing the chance that a bug or regression will be caught sooner rather than later.

A good tech spec also serves as documentation both during feature implementation and after feature launch. During feature implementation, it specifies exactly what work needs to be done. After launch, it helps uninformed engineers get up to speed quickly on the inner workings of a feature and the trade-offs involved.

Rapid iteration is another benefit. Reaching consensus on feature design and implementation in the tech spec stage means less contention down the road , which is priceless when you’re under a crunch, trying to get a feature launched.

After launch, the tech spec serves as a valuable reference guide where stakeholders can quickly locate accurate information  including:

  • Project scope
  • How it integrates with other services and platforms
  • Why certain implementation decisions were made

Specifications Writing for Engineers Course Specifics

Specifications Writing for Engineers, is a special Specifications Writing Training Workshop for Engineers and Technical Professionals. Specifications Writing For Engineers is a multidisciplinary training introducing the principles that apply to effective specification writing. It is a practical two-day interactive program reviewing good specification guideline, road maps, exercises, examples, case studies, group projects and discussions.

Tonex Specifications Writing Training has been developed to transfer the skills and expertise to those involved in producing and writing specifications.  Developing a specification includes identification, organization, presentation and good writing techniques.

Who Should Attend

Specification Writing is designed for multidiscipline Project Managers, Engineers, Procurement Specialists of all types. The course will also benefit suppliers and anyone else involved in planning, writing, managing or contributing to the preparation of specifications.

Key Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course, the participants are expected to:

  • Describe what the “Specifications” and “Requirements Specifications” are
  • Describe the role and purpose of specifications
  • Describe key steps involved in creating effective specifications
  • List different methods of specifying
  • Compare and contrast RFI, RFQ, RFP, IFB and Design Build
  • Describe differences between function and performance-oriented versus design-oriented specifications
  • Learn how to best unscramble a poor request for Information (RFI), Request for Proposal (RFP), IFB or Design-Build
  • Develop skills to efficiently use analysis to best structure, prepare and write specification
  • Develop skills to write better specifications
  • Learn how to best deal with excessive explanation and vague requirements
  • How to apply grammar, simple sentence structure, and correct punctuation to improve your specification writing capabilities

Training Method and Materials

Participants will be provided with:

  • Comprehensive specifications writing guidelines and notes
  • A workbook with workshop exercises
  • Tonex specification checklists, forms and charts
  • Extensive documents and reference resources
  • Post access to the trainer via WebEx, phone and emails for up to six months

Course Agenda/Topics Introductions to Specifications

  • Methods of Specifying
  • Descriptive Specification
  • Performance Specification
  • Reference Standard Specification
  • Proprietary Specification
  • Descriptive and Proprietary Combination Specification
  • Performance Specifying
  • Specifications Versus Systems Engineering Requirements
  • Difference between IFB, Design Build, RFP, RFI and RFQ
  • Specification and Drawings
  • Statements of Work (SoW) Versus Specifications
  • Performance Versus Design Specifications
  • Engineering Management Concerns on Specifications

Scope of  Specifications

  • Functional Characteristics
  • Performance Characteristics
  • Technical Characteristics
  • Statement of Requirements
  • Design and Performance Criteria
  • Acceptance Testing
  • Installations and Operations
  • List Drawings and Other Guidance Provided

Challenges in Writing Specifications

  • Issues and challenges with Specification Writing
  • Challenges of Written Communication
  • Choosing and Using the Right Words
  • How to Deal With Jargon and Unnecessary Information
  • Problem Words
  • Using Simple Sentence Structure and Punctuation
  • Ensuring a Clear Understanding of What Is Required
  • Impact of Style, Format and Appearance
  • Identify the Possible Risks Associated

Specification Writing Rules and Guidelines

  • Principles of Multidiscipline Specification Writing
  • Clear Precise Specification
  • Fundamentals of Structure, Language and Writing
  • Conditions of Contract
  • Allocating Requirements to Solicitation Documents
  • Structuring a Statement of Work (SoW)
  • System Requirements Specification
  • Writing Requirements Versus Other Descriptive Things
  • Functional Versus Design Oriented Specifications
  • Writing a Functionally Oriented Requirements Specification
  • Writing a Design Oriented Requirements Specification
  • Coordinating Drawings and Specifications

How to Write Better Specifications

  • How to Avoid Unnecessary Details
  • Grammar and Sentence Structure
  • Formatting and Punctuation
  • Design Specifications and Requirements
  • Specification Writing Process
  • Clear, Easy to Understand Specifications
  • How to write simpler sentences
  • Selecting a Method of Specifying
  • Specification Language
  • Vague and Ambiguous Text
  • Sentence Structure
  • Words to Avoid
  • Avoiding Common Causes of Ambiguity
  • Writing Clear Specification
  • Wording of Specifications
  • Concepts of Clear, Correct, Complete and Concise Specification
  • Imperative Mood
  • Streamlined Writing
  • Forbidden Words and Phrases
  • Vague Adjectives and Adverbs
  • Words With Legal Meaning Different From Common Usage Unclear Words
  • Subjective, or Precise Words
  • Correct Punctuation Style
  • Words and Phrases Not to Use

In Class Activities

  • CPM Specification for Feedback and Discussion
  • Workshops Will Focus on Specification Writing Best Practices:
  • Workshop 1: Writing Clear Specifications
    • The Need for Clarity
    • Fixing Long Sentences
    • Using Concise Expressions
    • How to Write Short Sentences
    • How to Use the Active Voice
    • How to Eliminate Fluff Words
    • Efficient Sentence Structure
    • How Grammatical Errors in Specifications Are Handled
    • Types of Ambiguities
    • Verb Tenses and Auxiliary Verb Usage
    • Modifiers That Apply to Two or More Nouns
    • Essential and Nonessential Dependent Clauses
    • Multiple Conjunctions
    • Extracting the Content From Master Spec
    • Specifying Workmanship
  • Workshop 2: Specification Language
    • Sentence Structure
    • Vocabulary
    • Abbreviations
    • Unnecessary Word
    • Inappropriate Terms
    • Prepositional Phrases
    • Guidelines on Usage of Words and Phrases in Specifications
  • Workshop 3: Grammar Review
    • Noun Family
    • Verb Family
    • Prepositions
    • Conjunctions
    • Clauses


Specifications Writing for Engineers | Workshop

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