The relationship between users, systems engineers, and sub-system design engineers is the foundation for developing a useful system. Not only must the three parties cooperate in order to effectively translate requirements to specifications, they must continue to interact during the trades made throughout detailed sub-system design and integration. The Region of Effective Communication (REC), shown in Figure 2 represents the ability of team members from each perspective to communicate and evaluate choices to make optimum system level decisions. A lack of constructive interaction between the three parties can lead to an ineffective system solution. As each of the three groups gains a better understanding of the other two, the interaction becomes more effective, moving into the Region of Effective Communication. Systems engineers, having typically developed out of a technical engineering field (aeronautical, mechanical, electrical, software, etc.), are well suited to communicate with sub-system design engineers during a development project. The communication between engineers and users is often more difficult. One way to improve the interaction between these parties is to employ systems engineers with experience in the operational community – operational domain systems engineers.
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