Why Stakeholders Are Important to the Software Requirements Process

2 minute read

Your first step in the requirements gathering process is to identify and include all relevant sources such as new and seasoned users, managers, business analysts and other stakeholders. Pay close attention to operational users, because they are the ones who will provide the most functional requirements for both system preference and user interface.

Treating this group as your top requirements source will enable you to develop a product, process or service that helps to solve real problems experienced by your customers.

Once you and your internal teams have collected your requirements, it’s a good idea to hold a special meeting to review them with key stakeholders. Make sure to include the project team if possible. Often times, last minute changes may arise during this meeting and that’s when it’s important to reach consensus among all stakeholders.

Setting requirements priorities

By organizing and prioritizing your requirements, you will enable your team to identify what’s missing, contradictory, or duplicated. A clear structure of requirements will also make it easier to determine all the actions, that should be taken during test management, including assigning related test cases to them. These two processes are closely related to each other and only if executed in a controlled and well planned way will result in achieving your project’s goal.

It’s important to be flexible throughout the entire application lifecycle to ensure that development and implementation of the system don’t just blindly aim to meet a broad set of requirements, because you could reduce costs or provide an earlier delivery. That’s why it’s important to prioritize requirements correctly.

Plan for requirements that are uniquely identified, consistent throughout the project, complete, easy to test, fully traceable, attainable by your team and verifiable by the stakeholders. If you spot a requirement that doesn’t meet these standards, modify or delete it.

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