Bollinger Motors is engineering Class 3 and 4 electric platforms and trucks. From the ground up, the team’s dream was to build something better. Bollinger is working with environmental organizations and Tier 1 and engineering firms to create advanced solutions that will facilitate the reduction in U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. They understand that the future is electric, and they’re especially proud to be building their all-electric trucks locally in Detroit, Michigan.
To set a solid foundation for the future of their company’s growth and innovation, bringing in more discipline to their development process was of the utmost importance. Bollinger Motors was looking for some key things in a modern requirements solution, and Jama Software fit the bill.
An Organized and Centralized Requirements Management System
When Jama Software was brought in, it was at the time the company was looking for a streamlined way to handle the complexity of their innovative vehicles. They needed new software to help achieve their high-level goals.
“Our vehicles are a massive organization of complex interconnected parts, and to effectively manage that level of complexity, an organized and centralized requirements management process was essential, “shared Lyth Alobiedat, Lead Controls Engineer at Bollinger Motors.
Across their vehicles, they have eight programmable modules which are each responsible for some subset of the vehicle’s subsystems. Alobiedat oversees all the modules that exist in the vehicles they are building — and his team is responsible for both the software and the implementation of the systems. These complex modules all need to interconnect, communicate, and perform in very specific ways.
With a lean team, they knew that to build the first vehicles of their kind, their requirements management process had to be in order. They needed to move away from static requirements trapped in disparate documents and move towards a modern requirements management platform that enables Living Requirements which create a common thread through all downstream activity.
Jama Connect enables the Bollinger team to create living requirements which link each requirement to its decomposed user stories, dev status across engineering teams, change impact analysis, risk analysis, test results, defects, etc. This is helping them more effectively manage and validate complex systems requirements while eliminating the risks and inefficiencies associated with static, inefficient documents-based requirements and other legacy systems.
Ease of Use
According to Alobiedat, ease of use was a core differentiator—and key reason for the selection — of Jama Connect, when compared to other requirements management tools. With many on the Bollinger Motors team experienced in using other, more challenging-to-work-with requirements tools, a platform as easy as Jama Connect stood out for them. Even traditionally non-tool users can get involved and use the tool quickly. “We had one training day with Jama Software’s Professional Services team and after that, nearly every person in the company was able to write at least one or more requirements,” said Alobiedat. Because Jama Connect is designed with training and documentation aligned to industry standards, it helps teams get ramped up quickly and see value immediately.
Ability to Import and Export with REQ IF Data Exchange
Another key priority when selecting Jama Connect, was having the ability to import and export data accordingly, and effectively collaborate through requirements exchange, including standard Req-IF based data exchange.
“The ability to import and export documents with Jama Connect was just something that stood out over anything that I’ve used in the past,” said Alobiedat.
Data Exchange for Jama Connect enables the transfer of requirements and associated metadata between customers and suppliers, using the industry standard ReqIF file format. The ability to import, export, and update data to create an ongoing exchange of requirements throughout the product development process has allowed the Bollinger team to save countless hours of tedious, manual work.
A Configurable, Scalable, SaaS Tool
When the team was looking for a new solution to manage their requirements, a Software as a Services (SaaS) tool was important, but in addition, they wanted a tool that would fit into their team’s existing workflow. “The configurability of everything in Jama Connect is just huge for us, because it allows us to use the tool the way that we want to,” shared Alobiedat.
The Bollinger team knew that having a SaaS requirements management solution would offer integrations with other cloud-based tools — thereby accelerating the design phase of the product development lifecycle with efficiency and scale by connecting requirements in Jama Connect with model-based design tools. It would also help to further streamline product development process and allow better collaboration across ecosystems like MathWorks, MATLAB & Simulink.
“With Jama Connect being a cloud-based tool, I particularly appreciate that it’s one less piece of software to connect, it’s one less VPN to log into and it’s one less risk of any potential local server issues that we have. The simplicity of just being able to quickly log in to a website browser and read the requirements that we need and submit them for approval is huge.” Lyth Alobiedat, Lead Controls Engineer Bollinger Motors
In addition to meeting all the objectives the Bollinger Motors team sought to accomplish by selecting and implementing Jama Connect, they have found some unexpected and welcome features of the platform that are making their processes even more efficient. Read the full customer story to see the benefits and outcomes.