SSADM (Structured Systems Analysis and Design Method) is the standard for the design of information systems in the United Kingdom. Developed in 1980, this evaluation method uses data flow modeling, logical data modeling and entity event modeling to verify whether or not a plan for an information system is sound. This six-step process has remained an important part of system development because of its multiple advantages.

Controlled Creation

SSADM is an extremely controlled method that has a standard methodology for all parts of the creation process. The procedure for making information systems work is the same every time SSADM is used. If the process is followed to the letter, there is little chance that the project will have any unforeseen problems.

Three Methods

One benefit of using the SSADM is that it uses three different techniques to analyze how viable a new information system will be. Data flow modeling examines the ways data flows through the system, the areas where the data is held and how the data changes between forms. Logical data modeling shows the interconnectedness of the data and how these parts relate to one another. Entity event modeling shows the context of the data – how it relates to events that occur in the business. By using three different methods, a company can create a model that is more exact and comprehensive.


SSADM compiles a large amount of data that is deeply and thoroughly analyzed. This long process leads to improved comprehension of how the system will come to be and it reduces the chance that this information will be interpreted incorrectly. This is especially important in the early stages of a project. A project founded on faulty information (or poor application) has a strong chance of ultimately failing.

The Standard

Since SSADM is the standard in the U.K., many people that have been involved in previous information system projects will be experienced in using this method. Using a new method would take many hours in training and the cost of developing a new training system. By instead using the familiar SSADM system, no new training is needed which saves time and money.