Transformation of Development Processes with Stages at the Company KOSTAL
The development processes of KOSTAL, a global manufacturer of mechatronic components in the automotive industry and headquartered in Germany, were stored as Microsoft Office documents in a central QMS system until 2014. There was no guided tailoring of the standard process description to individual projects. Required process changes were documented in individual project manuals. The organization had to prove for each individual project that development is compliant to Automotive SPICE® and Functional Safety (ISO 26262) as required by automotive manufacturer.
Duration of the project
KOSTAL decided to introduce a professional process management system and chose Method Park’s tool, Stages. The goal was to model development processes and required supporting processes in Stages and make them available for project stakeholders in this new clickable form. In the first phase of this internal transformation project, KOSTAL employees responsible for process management and Method Park experts worked closely together and transferred all existing process documents to Stages one-on-one. During the transformation process to Stages, existing inconsistencies were identified and eliminated. A new version of interconnected processes is released and centrally rolled out every three to four months in Stages by the KOSTAL employees responsible for processes. Users can now directly deploy improvements in new development projects. With the Stages Composer, process modelling is translated from German into another language (English) and both language versions are linked with each other. In the second phase of the transformation project, process contents were expanded for compliance to Automotive SPICE® level 3 and ISO 26262.
Introduction of the process management tool Stages
Migration of process documents to Stages process models
Ensuring process compliance to ISO 26262 and Automotive SPICE®
The process team now creates a new process instance for each new development project. By the end of 2014, the first project started with process descriptions in Stages. In compliance with the according rights concept, development teams can access the corresponding project. With tailoring, standard processes are adjusted to the requirements of different projects, which are documented in a KOSTAL specific tailoring report. Further project reports are derived from the data base and replace documents which had been previously created manually. Compliance to Automotive SPICE® and ISO 26262 is deposited in the standard process and available in each project instance while each individual project tailoring is being considered. Acceptance by project teams was significantly increased via different process views and clickable descriptions. With a feedback mechanism, teams can directly forward their improvement proposals or problems in processes to the process modeler. Compliance to Automotive SPICE® level 3 and ISO 26262 was assessed and successfully confirmed by external assessors. Efforts required to prove compliance for OEMs in individual projects, were significantly reduced.
Establishment of process instances for each individual project
Adjustment of standard processes to each individual project by tailoring
Automated creation of reports
High process acceptance within project teams
Confirmed compliance to ISO 26262 and Automotive SPICE®