This International Standard establishes a common framework of process descriptions for describing the life
cycle of systems created by humans. It defines a set of processes and associated terminology from an
engineering viewpoint. These processes can be applied at any level in the hierarchy of a system’s structure.
Selected sets of these processes can be applied throughout the life cycle for managing and performing the
stages of a system's life cycle. This is accomplished through the involvement of all stakeholders, with the
ultimate goal of achieving customer satisfaction.
This International Standard also provides processes that support the definition, control and improvement of
the system life cycle processes used within an organization or a project. Organizations and projects can use
these processes when acquiring and supplying systems.
This International Standard concerns those systems that are man-made and may be configured with one or
more of the following system elements: hardware, software, data, humans, processes (e.g., processes for
providing service to users), procedures (e.g., operator instructions), facilities, materials and naturally occurring
When a system element is software, the software life cycle processes in ISO/IEC/IEEE 12207:2015 may be
used to implement that system element. The two standards are harmonized for concurrent use on a single
project or in a single organization.