DAOD 3033-0, Systems Engineering

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Definitions
  3. Policy Direction
  4. Consequences
  5. Authorities
  6. References

1. Introduction

Date of Issue: 2019-02-13

Application: This DAOD is a directive that applies to employees of the Department of National Defence (DND employees) and an order that applies to officers and non-commissioned members of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF members).

Supersession: NDHQ Policy Directive P23 (Issue 2), DND Materiel Test and Evaluation Policy, 16 October 1986

Approval Authority: Assistant Deputy Minister (Materiel) (ADM(Mat))

Enquiries: Director Materiel Policy and Procedures (DMPP)

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2. Definitions

defence support system (système de soutien pour la défense)

A system, not classified as an instrument of combat, used in a defensive or support role (i.e. North Warning System, Strategic Automatic Message Switching Operational Network (SAMSON), auxiliary vessel, truck, stand-alone automated data processing (ADP), and integrated ADP including all related facilities, equipment, materiel, services and personnel required for the operation and maintenance of the system. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 46904)

defence system (système de défense)

A weapons system or defence support system. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 46905)

operational requirement (besoin opérationnel)

An established need justifying the timely allocation of resources to achieve a capability to accomplish approved military or civil objectives, operations, missions, or actions. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 5707)

requirements management (gestion des exigences)

A process for tracking and controlling all requirements of a defence system, its attributes, reasons for its existence and changes during its entire life cycle. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 695066)

systems engineering (ingénierie des systèmes)

An engineering discipline governing all technical and technical management processes that transform operational requirements for a defence system into an integrated, value-added and life-cycle balanced solution, using interdisciplinary and holistic approaches in order to ensure that operational requirements are satisfied throughout its entire life cycle. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 695068)

test and evaluation (essai et évaluation)

In respect of systems engineering, a method used during the verification and validation processes of a defence system or a component of a defence system in order to compare tested performance and other characteristics against defined requirements, specifications, standards and other criteria. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 695067)

weapon system (système d'arme)

A combination of one or more weapons with all related equipment, materials, services, personnel and means of delivery and deployment (if applicable) required for self-sufficiency. (Defence Terminology Bank record number 5631)

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3. Policy Direction


3.1 This DAOD sets out the systems engineering policy for all defence systems managed by the DND and the CAF.

3.2 Systems engineering transforms operational requirements and system deficiencies into defence systems with verified and validated performance. Systems engineering ensures that the DND and the CAF are equipped with the right defence systems to accomplish their roles and missions.

3.3 Canada has ratified the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Standardization Agreement (STANAG) 4728, System Life Cycle Management, which requires that system life cycle management framework and processes be in place.

Policy Statement

3.4 The DND and the CAF are committed to performing systems engineering by executing repeatable, systematic, interdisciplinary and streamlined processes, with iterative and incremental approaches throughout the life cycle of all defence systems, in order to:

  1. satisfy DND and CAF operational requirements;
  2. address operational requirements and deficiencies of defence systems in meeting current and future missions and operational capabilities
  3. address all technical aspects of a defence system, including performance, sustainment, interoperability, security, safety and suitability for service;
  4. provide the primary technical interface to ensure compliance with other business functions, including project management, capability management, quality management, financial management, system operation and maintenance, procurement and contracting;
  5. address applicable national, allied and other international legislation, regulations, policies and directives, and implement any required waivers, deviations and exceptions within an integrated technical risk management framework;
  6. ensure value for money; and
  7. support government strategic objectives.


3.5 The DND and the CAF must:

  1. identify measurable mission and business outcomes for defence systems;
  2. formulate high level mandatory requirements that are needed to satisfy operational requirements and overcome capability deficiencies;
  3. establish a plan for the conduct of systems engineering for defence systems, including:
    1. phases and gating suitable for their scope and specificity; and
    2. performance, management and control of technical aspects of development, acquisition, architecture, transition to in-service, sustainment, change management and disposal of defence systems;
  4. transform operational requirements for defence systems and system deficiencies into technical requirements by:
    1. engaging with multiple stakeholders as early as possible to integrate multidisciplinary contributions, including supportability, reliability, integrity, availability, maintainability, interoperability, training, energy, facilities, security and supply chain; and
    2. taking into account the entire life cycle of defence systems needed to provide the required capability;
  5. perform requirements management that ensures continuous forward and backward requirements traceability from identification of operational requirements, through development of technical requirements, verification and validation, to the analysis of the operational performance of in-service defence systems;
  6. define the technical baseline for configuration management of defence systems;
  7.  verify, validate and assess the performance of defence systems against operational requirements, defined standards, specifications and other criteria, using inspection, demonstration, test, evaluation, sampling, modelling and simulation, and other methods;
  8. ensure that test and evaluation is performed before:
    1. introducing new defence systems and technology into service;
    2. modifying in-service defence systems and technology;
    3. introducing solutions for failures of in-service defence systems;
    4. extending the life of existing defence systems; and
    5. using existing defence systems within either a new application or a new environment;
  9. ensure performance monitoring and management processes are in place for defence systems throughout their life cycle;
  10. establish open communication and agreements on systems engineering practices with other stakeholders involved in the life cycle of defence systems; and
  11. maintain systems engineering capability, including training, reference materials, tools and best practices.

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4. Consequences


4.1 Should clarification of the policy statement, requirements or authorities set out in this DAOD be required, DND employees and CAF members may seek direction through their channel of communication or chain of command, as appropriate. Failure by the DND and the CAF to ensure that the requirements specified in this DAOD are properly implemented may result in the DND and the CAF not achieving the corporate direction set out in the policy statement. Not achieving this corporate direction could affect the ability of the DND and the CAF to ensure that the CAF is prepared to undertake missions for the protection of Canada and Canadians and the maintenance of international peace and stability.

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5. Authorities

Authority Table

5.1 The following table identifies the authorities associated with this DAOD:

The... has or have the authority to...


  • issue systems engineering policies, orders and directives for materiel, except for information management (IM) and information technology (IT) materiel managed by Assistant Deputy Minister (Information Management) (ADM(IM)).

Assistant Deputy Minister (Infrastructure and Environment)

  • issue systems engineering policies, orders and directives for real property and immovables.


  • issue systems engineering policies, orders and directives for the IM and IT materiel managed by ADM(IM).

ADM(Mat) directors general and DMPP

  • issue systems engineering policies, orders and directives, other than DAOD.

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6. References

Acts, Regulations, Central Agency Policies and Policy DAOD

Other References

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