This International Standard specifies the purpose and content of all identified systems and software life-cycle and service management information items (documentation). The information item contents are defined according to generic document types, as presented in Clause 7, and the specific purpose of the document (Clause 10).
This International Standard assumes an organization is implementing life-cycle processes in conformance with ISO/IEC 15288:2008 (IEEE Std 15288-2008), Systems and software engineering — System life cycle processes, or ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008), Systems and software engineering — Software life cycle processes, or practising service management in conformance with ISO/IEC 20000-1:2005, Information technology — Service management — Part 1: Specification, and ISO/IEC 20000-2:2005, Information technology — Service management — Part 2: Code of practice. ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008) and ISO/IEC 15288:2008 (IEEE Std 15288-2008) define a set of processes for managing and performing the stages of a systems life cycle. They define an Information Management process, but they do “not detail documentation in terms of name, format, explicit content, and recording media” [ISO/IEC 15288:2008 (IEEE Std 15288-2008), 1.4)]. ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008) establishes a common framework for software life-cycle processes and in passing identifies or requires a number of documentation items. The Process Reference Model does not represent a particular process implementation approach, nor does it prescribe a system/software life-cycle model, methodology, or technique. ISO/IEC 20000 1:2005 establishes general requirements for documents and records (3.2). ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008) does not always specify when software information items are to be prepared, nor does it identify information item contents. This International Standard provides a mapping of ISO/IEC 15288:2008 (IEEE Std 15288-2008) and ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008) clauses with a set of information items.
The generic document types (which may be referred to as information item types) are to be used to identify the information necessary to support the ISO/IEC 15288:2008 (IEEE Std 15288-2008) agreement, enterprise, project, and technical processes; the ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008), primary, supporting, and organizational life-cycle processes; or the ISO/IEC 20000-1:2005 service management processes.
This International Standard identifies records and information items based on analysis of
references in ISO/IEC 15288:2008 (IEEE Std 15288-2008), ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008), ISO/IEC 20000 1:2005 and ISO/IEC 20000-2:2005, which in some cases provide partial or complete outlines for the content of specific documents. However, the requirements for the life-cycle processes do not uniquely and unambiguously state the requirements for the information item contents or the information needed by a user of an information item. Moreover, the information from the life-cycle processes may overlap or may be created and revised at different times. In short, the analysed references do not result in a logically complete list of information items.
For each life-cycle process, it would be possible to prepare a plan, procedures, and reports, as well as numerous records, requests, descriptions and specifications. Such an elaboration of the documentation schema would be more rigorous than specified by ISO/IEC 15288:2008 (IEEE Std 15288-2008) or ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008). As ISO/IEC 15288:2008 (IEEE Std 15288-2008) points out (1.4), “This International Standard does not detail the life-cycle processes in terms of methods or procedures required to meet the requirements and outcomes of a process.” Thus, information items may be combined or subdivided as needed for project or organizational purposes, as further defined in Clause 2, Applicability, and Clause 3, Conformance.
Not included in the scope of this International Standard are the following:
a) the format or content of recommended input data or input information items, except for the content of those input items that are also output information items;
b) instructions on combining or subdividing information items and information item contents of a similar nature;
c) guidance on selecting an appropriate presentation format, delivery media, and maintenance technology for system and software life-cycle data, records, information items, or documentation, such as electronic publishing systems, content management systems, or data repositories;
d) detailed content for information items related to general business, organizational, and financial management that is not specific to systems and software engineering and information technology service management, such as business strategies, human resources and investment policies, personnel selection criteria, financial budgeting and accounting policies and procedures, cost reports, or payroll data;
e) information items showing only approval of an ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008) subclause, such as ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008), 184.108.40.206.4.5;
f) any ISO/IEC 15288:2008 (IEEE Std 15288-2008) or ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008) subclause not explicitly or implicitly identifying the recording of information about an activity or task, for example, ISO/IEC 12207:2008 (IEEE Std 12207-2008), 6.4.4;
g) work products, models, software, and other artifacts of the life-cycle products and services that are not information items or records used in information items.
NOTE 1 ISO/IEC 26514:2008, Systems and software engineering — Requirements for designers and developers of user documentation, provides guidance on formats for software user documentation.
NOTE 2 ISO/IEC TR 15504-5:1999, Information technology — Software Process Assessment — Part 5: An assessment model and indicator guidance, details the content of work products as well as information items. Its guidance includes descriptions of a set of information items (documents) that an assessor may encounter. The information items in its guidance may be produced by combinations and subdivisions of the required information items in this International Standard.