How To Write A Project Specification
How to Write a Technical Specification
A technical specification is a document that defines a set of requirements that a product or assembly must meet or exceed. A product or assembly that does not meet all of the specifically expressed requirements does not meet the specification, and often is referred to as being out of specification or "out of spec." Specifications are used when a contract for technical products or services is issued. The technical specification defines the requirements to fulfill the contract.
Use these tips to learn how to write a technical specification.
Assessing General Considerations
Decide if the specification will be open or closed.
- Consider an open specification. An open specification describes required performances without mandating how those performances are to be achieved. An open specification leaves a great deal of freedom to the entity that creates a product or assembly to satisfy the specifications. For example, a computer memory storage specification may not specify the exact medium used to store the data in order to meet the requirement.
- Evaluate a closed specification. A closed specification describes not only required performances, but also tools, technologies or sub-assemblies that must be used in the design of a product or assembly to meet the specification. For example, a lifting assembly specification may require that hydraulic power be used by the product or assembly that is to meet the specification.
Determine requirements.Evaluate all specifications to determine if they are necessary to the product or assembly.
Ascertain your writing style.
- Use short and direct sentences.
- Avoid using "it" or "which", and clearly specify what is being referred to in the text.
- Define the jargon and abbreviations that are common within the industry. To clearly define industry terms, add a definition section at the beginning of the specification.
Develop your table of contents.Order the contents such that general requirements about the product or assembly are presented first, followed by more specific subsection or sub-assembly specifications.
Creating the Specification
List all requirements that must be met by the product or assembly being specified.Use the word "shall" to define a requirement. Requirements expressed as "shall" must be fully and properly met. Consider the following, and add other factors as required for the product or assembly to meet the needs of the specification.
- Decide the acceptable dimensions and/or weight of the product.
- Specify the full range of environmental conditions under which the product or assembly must meet the specification. If reduced performance of the product or assembly is acceptable at extreme temperatures and humidity, clearly note that in the specification.
- Place tolerances on the performance of the product or sub-assembly.
- Establish third party workmanship standards or safety standards that are to be applied to the product or assembly. This could include, for example, specifying that the product be UL or CSA certified.
- Detail the technical specifications that the product or assembly must meet that are specific to that product or assembly. For example, an electronic assembly would have specifications for processing speed and product electronic interfaces, while a mechanical sub-assembly would have specifications for rigidity and load bearing capacity.
- Specify a life for the product or assembly. If scheduled maintenance or calibration of the product or assembly is acceptable, the specification must state that. The specification must state the acceptable conditions under which said maintenance or calibration of the product or assembly is performed and how often said maintenance or calibration is performed.
Completing the Specification
Assign a title and control number with revision capability to the specification.
Determine the generating authority and the authority in charge of specification changes.Signature blocks should be included for these authorities.
Read the specification critically.Pretend you are an inexperienced implementer or an implementer who seeks to minimize cost by circumventing the specification as much as possible. Modify the specification as needed to provide full requirements to the inexperienced implementer and to close loopholes on the circumventing implementer.
QuestionHow do I write specification of candle mold?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerInclude dimensions, weight, material, and melting point. Also include any important features.Thanks!
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Example of technical specification document?
To write a technical specification, start by developing a table of contents that lists general requirements for the product or assembly first, followed by more specific subsections. Then, list all the requirements that must be met during assembly, using the word “shall” in your definitions. For example, if a bolt needs be to 2 inches wide, you can write, “Bolt shall be 2 inches in width.” Once you’ve written down all the specifications, assign the document a title and control number and include signature blocks for the people who have permission to revise it.
Sources and Citations
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Video: Writing Specifications
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