Design reviews can be powerful tools for the procuring agency to maintain visibility of the status and progress of the power supply developing activity in meeting the specified requirements and to initiate corrective action if warranted. In order for a design review to be effective, it must be timely, expertly staffed and have an effective agenda.
The design review must be timed to the completion of major milestones of the power supply development schedule. Rather than establishing firm dates for the design reviews at the onset of the program, it would be advisable to provide a reasonable degree of flexibility in scheduling, such that the activities associated with the milestones are indeed completed. This might be accomplished by alerting the procuring agency one month prior to being ready for each design review. The procuring agency can then determine if the developing activity is adhering to the schedule and either approve the date or take appropriate action if a significant schedule slippage is indicated. In any event, the developing activity must be ready for the design review if it is to be effective and constructive. If the developing activity must generate a review package with insufficient data and drawings to meet a pre-established date, the review will probably be less than satisfactory.
The quality and effectiveness of the review is directly dependent on the technical qualifications of the review team members. Technical incompetence can only lead to misunderstanding, irrelevant questions and issuance of unnecessary action items.
An agenda should be generated and agreed upon by the procuring agency and the power supply developer well in advance of the design review. The agenda should delineate very clearly the items to be covered and should include the format in which the information will be presented. If the procuring agency has a specific design review checklist, it should be provided to the developing activity in advance of each review.
Once the design review date is established and an agenda is agreed upon, a design review package should be provided to the procuring agency at least one week prior to the review in order that the members of the review team can become familiar with it.