Hardware design HWDE


The specification and design of computing and communications equipment.

Guidance notes

Examples of computing and communications equipment include - but are not limited to - semiconductor processors, high performance computing (HPC) architectures and digital signals processor (DSP) and graphics processor chips.

Activities include...

  • The identification of concepts and their translation into implementable design.
  • The selection and integration, or design and prototyping of components.
  • The adherence to industry standards including compatibility, security and sustainability.

This is typically related to the integration with, or connection to, an IT infrastructure or network.

Hardware design: Level 6


Controls hardware design practice within an enterprise. Influences industry-based models for the development of new technology components. Develops effective procurement strategies, consistent with business needs. Ensures adherence to that relevant technical strategies, policies, standards and practices.

Hardware design: Level 5


Specifies and designs complex hardware components/ systems. Selects appropriate design standards, methods and tools, consistent with agreed enterprise policies, and ensures they are applied effectively. Reviews others' designs to ensure selection of appropriate technology, efficient use of resources, and effective integration of multiple systems and technology. Contributes to policy for selection of components. Evaluates and undertakes impact analysis on major design options and assesses and manages associated risks. Ensures that hardware designs balance functional, service quality, security, systems management and sustainability requirements.

Hardware design: Level 4


Designs computing and communications equipment, taking account of target environment, performance, security and sustainability requirements. Translates logical designs into physical designs, and delivers technical prototypes of proposed components for approval by customer and execution by technicians. Designs tests to measure performance of prototypes and production output against specification and inform iterative development.