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Consulting Insights

Requirements: A glance from all team role perspectives (Part 3)

While working with a set of requirements, we should always stay focused on the ‘most critical’ requirements – typically, those with the highest business value. Requirements prioritization is a great way to do it, therefore, in order to prioritize we should make a decision process to assign the appropriate priority to each requirement.

 

Prioritization and Traceability

2. Prioritization

While working with a set of requirements, we should always stay focused on the ‘most critical’ requirements – typically, those with the highest business value. Requirements prioritization is a great way to do it, therefore, in order to prioritize we should make a decision process to assign the appropriate priority to each requirement.

Some of the factors we should take as a basis for prioritization are:

requirements

Risk Analysis. This will help identify and manage areas of uncertainty that can impact an initiative, solution, or organization.
Risky requirements  may need to be investigated or implemented first, so that if its risk causes the project to fail, the organization will have invested as little as possible at that point.

Timeboxing or Budgeting. This prioritization is based on allocation of a fixed resource – time or money. The approaches to select requirements for a new iteration are:

  • All In: Consider all eligible requirements with its assigned duration or cost, and then remove one by one until having the appropriate set that meets the calendar or budget limit.
  • All Out: Start by adding the requirement(s) with assigned duration or cost to the calendar or budget and stop when the calendar dates are met or budget limit is reached.
  • Selective: Begin by identifying high priority requirements added to the calendar or budget, and then add or remove items in order to meet the calendar date or budget limit.

  • 3. Traceability

    In order to have a broader sight of the business items we are working with, we need to create and maintain relationships between business objectives, requirements, other team deliverables, and solution components to support business analysis or other activities.

    This enables and facilitates to perform an Impact Analysis whenever is needed – i.e. with change requests, and also helps to maintain a Logical Organization and Structure.

    3.1. Highlights for each team player:

    requirements

    Verification and Validation

    4. Verification

    Ensures that requirements specifications and models meet the necessary standard of quality to allow them to be used effectively to guide further work. Characteristics of requirements Quality are:

    requirements

    4.1 Tools and Techniques

    Acceptance and Evaluation Criteria Definition. While acceptance criteria describes the minimal set of requirements that must be met in order for a particular solution to be worth implementing, the evaluation criteria consists of the set of requirements that will be used to choose between multiple solutions.

    Templates. Help standardize requirements and will ensure that each important part is properly analyzed, set and documented.

    Structured Walkthrough. These are working sessions where participants review and discuss a set of requirements to communicate, verify and validate them.

    Checklists. This quality control technique may include a standard set of quality elements that reviewers use for requirements verification/validation or might  be specifically created to capture issues of concern to the project.

    5. Validation

    Ensures that all requirements support the delivery of value to the business, fulfill its goals and objectives, and meet stakeholder needs.

    5.1 Tools and Techniques

    Prototyping. Useful for validation activities. Prototyping of product components is used to gain user and stakeholder agreement with the proposed solution.

    Acceptance Criteria Definition. These are the quality metrics that must be met to achieve acceptance by a stakeholder.

    Risk Analysis. It can be used to identify possible scenarios that would alter the business value delivered by a requirement.

    Structured Walkthrough. These review meetings are conducted to confirm whether the stakeholder agrees that their needs are met.

    5.2 Highlights for each team player:

    requirements

     

    Leonor M.

    Singer, boxer, makeup artist and clean eating fan, Leonor comes from a nice Sinaloense family and came to study to the city of Monterrey some years ago. She has 12 years of experience in quality assurance during which she spent 5 of them specializing in Business Analysis. She recently started a brilliant career at Inflection Point, became a Jr BA’s trainer and into that path she has created blogs regarding this key area of development.

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