What is Concept of Operations (CONOP)?
Concept of Operations (CONOP) is a document that describes what a system does in easy-to-understand language, what enables those with no technical background to know what it is and how it works.
The CONOP can be used to get stakeholders in the system to agree on such understanding and knowledge and to give a project a clear purpose.
A CONOP helps a company to document in plain text what is needed and what kind of information system is to be created. A CONOP should address one of the following points:
- The function of the system in the organization
- The stakeholders themselves who could be users of the system, people who develop the system, or anyone who is dependent on the system
- The purpose of the system
For the CONOP to be effective, information on the following points is required:
- How the system is used
- Recorded goals
- System requirements
- A project plan leading to the creation of the system
Stakeholder buy-in and support are required for the project to proceed as planned. Stakeholders should also be involved throughout the project to ensure that the system is built on schedule and that the recorded and expected goals are achieved.
Different scenarios should be developed to determine how the system would behave in the event of certain events. This is often achieved through the use of flowcharts and other visual aids.