Most Failures Occur at the Interface

The French government ordered new trains for their national rail system. This is an expensive proposition, at nearly 3 billion Euros. It was disclosed just this week that the planners failed to consider that train stations in France had been built over many years, over decades, with different specifications over time. They only took measurements at newer stations. Many of the older stations are too small to accommodate the new trains, many approaching a thousand stations. Ouch.

The use of system engineering tools including forms of interrelationship, interaction, and interface matricies should be considered and examined in facilitated cross functional group exercises during project design.