Why SysML does often fail – and possible solutions

Did you try to bring model based development into your organization and had a hard time? Did you work hard preparing the process, methods and tools but despite all trainings and support, users did not adopt your model based development approach as expected? Did you experience low model quality and keep struggling to provide the needed model quality assurance? Well, you are probably not alone.

Nikolaus Regnat uses the SysML as a prominent example to describe why modeling languages often do not live up to their expectations and why introducing them into an organization frequently fails. While there are many reasons like language shortcomings and tool issues one of the main issues is the prominent lack of focus on the end users of the modeling language. Languages like SysML were built by modeling experts for modeling experts ignoring the fundamental fact that most end users are not and probably never will be modeling experts. They might get two days training on SysML and one day training for the method their organization developed but that does not make them modeling experts by any means. And as most users will not use the modeling language on a day-to-day basis they never will become experts thus struggling every single time they use the modeling language.

Working since 15 years on model based development in industry environments Nikolaus Regnat will not only show the main reasons that lead to failure, but also show possible solutions that (at least) worked well at various Siemens business units. With a key focus on the user experience, existing modeling languages and tools can be adapted to make them more accessible. With manageable effort this can lead to a massively improved user acceptance and therefore provide a cornerstone of a sustainable introduction of model based development into an organization.

Short Biography

Nikolaus Regnat is a senior key expert for model based development at Siemens AG. After studying computer science he started his career at Siemens VDO (the automotive business unit later sold to Continental AG) working on embedded software development for engine management systems. After introducing a model based development process into the world-wide organization of Siemens VDO he joined Siemens Corporate Technology in 2008. Since then he has helped the Siemens business units to adopt model based development methodologies to their organizations. He is also frequently involved in research projects, the latest one being CrESt (Collaborative EmbeddedSystems) where he is currently leading the sub-project dealing with model based development methodologies. He is residing in Munich with his wife Karin and his two kids. He can be contacted at nikolaus (dot) regnat (at) siemens (dot) com.