Visure Solutions

Start Free Trial

How to Calculate ROI of Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) Tools Investments

How to Calculate ROI of Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) Tools Investments

Table of Contents

Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) has been gaining significant popularity in recent years as an approach to managing the complexity of developing systems. MBSE provides a comprehensive view of the system development process by allowing stakeholders to create and manipulate models to represent various aspects of the system. With the growing adoption of MBSE, organizations are investing in MBSE tools to enable effective model development, management, and analysis. However, like any other investment, organizations need to calculate the return on investment (ROI) of MBSE tools to justify the expenditure. In this article, we will explore how to calculate the ROI of MBSE tool investments.

Understanding the ROI of MBSE Tools Investments

The ROI calculation for MBSE tool investments can be approached in several ways, depending on the organization’s specific goals and objectives. The following steps provide a general framework for calculating ROI for MBSE tool investments:

  1. Identify the costs of the investment: This includes the cost of the MBSE tool, installation and configuration costs, training costs, and ongoing maintenance costs.
  2. Identify the benefits of the investment: This includes the expected improvements in productivity, quality, and efficiency resulting from the use of the MBSE tool.
  3. Assign a monetary value to the benefits: To calculate ROI, the benefits must be assigned a monetary value. This can be done by estimating the cost savings resulting from the expected improvements in productivity, quality, and efficiency.
  4. Determine the payback period: The payback period is the time it takes for the organization to recover the initial investment in the MBSE tool. It is calculated by dividing the total cost of the investment by the expected annual savings resulting from the investment.
  5. Calculate the ROI: The ROI is calculated by subtracting the total cost of the investment from the total benefits and then dividing the result by the total cost of the investment. The ROI is typically expressed as a percentage.

It is important to note that the ROI calculation is not a one-time event. As the organization continues to use the MBSE tool, it should regularly evaluate the ROI to ensure that the investment is still worthwhile.

Advantages of MBSE Tools: Enhancing Systems Engineering Processes

Model Based Systems Engineering

MBSE (Model-Based Systems Engineering) tools offer several benefits that enhance the engineering process and improve the overall efficiency and effectiveness of systems development. Some of the key benefits of MBSE tools include:

  1. Improved Communication and Collaboration: MBSE tools provide a common platform for teams to collaborate on system development. They facilitate clear and concise communication by representing complex systems through graphical models that are easier to understand than textual documents. This fosters better teamwork and reduces misunderstandings between stakeholders.

  2. Visual Representation of Systems: MBSE tools use graphical models such as block diagrams, flowcharts, and state machines to represent the system architecture and behavior. These visual representations make it easier for stakeholders to grasp the system’s intricacies and relationships, aiding in requirements understanding and design comprehension.

  3. Early Detection of Issues: By developing models of the system early in the design phase, MBSE tools allow for the detection of potential issues or conflicts in requirements, design, or functionality. This early identification of problems helps to mitigate risks and reduce the cost of fixing errors later in the development process.

  4. Requirements Management and Traceability: MBSE tools enable the tracing of requirements throughout the entire system development lifecycle. This ensures that every component of the system is derived from and linked to specific requirements. It improves traceability, which is crucial for verification, validation, and compliance purposes.

  5. Change Management: MBSE tools make it easier to manage changes in the system requirements or design. As the model is updated, changes are automatically propagated throughout the model, helping to maintain consistency and reduce the chances of errors caused by manual updates.

  6. Simulation and Analysis: Many MBSE tools allow for the simulation and analysis of models, enabling engineers to evaluate the system’s behavior under different conditions. This capability helps in making informed decisions, optimizing performance, and validating system behavior before physical implementation.

  7. Reuse and Standardization: MBSE tools often support model libraries and standard modeling languages (e.g., SysML, UML) that promote reusability of models and components. This encourages best practices and standardization within the organization, leading to more efficient development processes.

  8. Documentation and Reporting: MBSE tools automatically generate documentation from the models, reducing the effort required for manual documentation. They can generate reports, specifications, and other documentation necessary for reviews, audits, and compliance purposes.

  9. Integration with other Engineering Tools: MBSE tools can integrate with other engineering tools such as requirements management software, simulation tools, and configuration management systems. This integration streamlines the workflow and ensures consistency across different phases of the development process.

  10. Support for Complex Systems: MBSE tools are particularly beneficial for developing complex systems with numerous interdependent components and interactions. They help manage the complexity and provide a holistic view of the system, facilitating better decision-making.

ROI Calculation Methodology for MBSE Tools

Model-Based Systems Engineering

Calculating the Return on Investment (ROI) for MBSE (Model-Based Systems Engineering) tools involves assessing the costs associated with implementing and maintaining the tools against the benefits they provide. Here’s a step-by-step methodology to calculate the ROI for MBSE tools:

Step 1: Identify Goals and Objectives

Clearly define the objectives of adopting MBSE tools in your organization. These could include improving collaboration, reducing development time, enhancing system understanding, minimizing errors, etc. Quantify the objectives wherever possible, as it will help in measuring the ROI more accurately.

Step 2: Estimate Implementation Costs

Determine the upfront costs of acquiring the MBSE tools, including software licenses, hardware requirements (if any), and any training expenses for the team to effectively use the tools.

Step 3: Assess Maintenance and Support Costs

Consider the ongoing costs required for maintaining and supporting the MBSE tools, such as software updates, technical support, and potential integration expenses with existing systems.

Step 4: Quantify Time Savings

Estimate the time saved due to increased efficiency and productivity resulting from using MBSE tools. For example, consider the time saved in documentation, model revisions, and communication.

Step 5: Evaluate Error Reduction

Assess the reduction in errors and the corresponding savings in terms of rework, testing, and potential liabilities due to better requirements understanding and improved system analysis through MBSE tools.

Step 6: Analyze Collaboration Improvements

If the adoption of MBSE tools leads to better collaboration and communication between teams and stakeholders, quantify the impact on decision-making time and potential cost savings.

Step 7: Measure Reduced Rework

Determine the reduction in rework due to early issue detection and improved system comprehension, which ultimately saves resources and project delays.

Step 8: Consider Reusability

If the MBSE tools promote the reusability of models or components, evaluate the time and cost savings achieved through leveraging existing assets.

Step 9: Calculate the ROI

Calculate the ROI using the following formula:

ROI (%) = [(Total Benefits – Total Costs) / Total Costs] * 100

Step 10: Account for Intangible Benefits

In addition to tangible benefits, consider intangible benefits such as improved customer satisfaction, enhanced team morale, and long-term strategic advantages.

Step 11: Monitor and Review

After implementing MBSE tools, continually monitor their usage and assess whether the expected benefits are being realized. Periodically review the ROI calculations to ensure accuracy and make adjustments as needed.

It’s important to note that the ROI calculation is specific to each organization and project. Different projects may have varying levels of complexity and potential benefits, so tailor the methodology accordingly to suit your specific context.


Organizations should carefully evaluate their specific needs and goals when selecting an MBSE tool. Different tools have different strengths and weaknesses, and the best tool for one organization may not be the best tool for another. Additionally, organizations should consider the total cost of ownership, including installation and configuration costs, training costs, and ongoing maintenance costs, when evaluating the ROI of MBSE tool investments.

In conclusion, calculating the ROI of MBSE tool investments requires careful consideration of both the costs and benefits of the investment. While it can be challenging to quantify the benefits of MBSE tools in monetary terms, organizations can use the framework outlined in this article to estimate the ROI of their investments. By carefully evaluating their specific needs and goals, organizations can select an MBSE tool that maximizes their ROI and enables the successful development of high-quality systems.

Don’t forget to share this post!


The High Cost of Poor Requirements Management

June 06th, 2024

11 am EST | 5 pm CET | 8 am PST

Louis Arduin

Louis Arduin

Main Speaker

Impact & Solutions for Inefficient Requirements Management

Explore the significant impact that inefficient requirements management practices can have on project costs and timelines.