Requirements Manager Center of Excellence: “Achieving Goals Without Formalization” - Mar 2010


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Most companies today recognize that the definition and management of requirements for software projects needs improving. Companies may realize that they have been achieving their goals without formalizing a Requirements Management Center of Excellence. A Center of Excellence (CoE) has a lot of responsibilities and serves as the critical hub of managing software requirements.

Mr. Karczewski will present an overview of a Requirements Management Center of Excellence, covering benefits of establishing a CoE, Requirements Engineering phases and metrics, and what can be included in a CoE.

Joel Karczewski, Area Vice President at Paychex, is responsible for Enterprise Business Solutions and has over 25 years of Information Technology development and operational experience. Joel joined Paychex in 2008 and is responsible for groups that manage application design, development and testing, user acceptance testing and software configuration and release processes.

Prior to joining Paychex, Joel was a Principal at Vangard Group responsible for the development and implementation of systems for the Institutional Investment Division.

Joel holds a MBA from LaSalle University and has earned his Project Management Professional (PMP) designation from the Project Management Institute.

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Requirements Manager Center of Excellence: “Achieving Goals Without Formalization” - Mar 2010

  1. 1. Requirements Management Center of Excellence“Achieving Goals Without Formalization” 2009 TM Project Management Consulting Services(
  2. 2. OverviewCenter of Excellence (CoE) CharacterizationRequirements Management CoE BenefitsCoE PillarsRequirements Influence MindmapPillar BenefitsRequirements Engineering Phases & Metrics 2
  3. 3. CoE Characterization Is a logical grouping of related skills or disciplines A place where individuals can learn and share knowledge An organizational unit that can be either face-to-face or virtual 3
  4. 4. Requirements ManagementCoE Benefits Bridge the gap that divides business and IT Matches resources to demand Participate in all strategic initiatives by providing expert analysis resources Evaluate the impact of proposed changes on all areas of the business and effectively allocate resources according to business priorities. Improves efficiency Speeds time-to-market Reduces cycle times Enables reuse of resources Creates higher quality requirements 4
  5. 5. Best Practices Metrics Processes and Procedures Enterprise Requirements Structure Requirements Reuse Integration with Testing Baseline Strategy Trace Strategy Management Change Management Process Improvement Requirements Center of ExcellenceProfessional Development Requirements Management Tool Requirements Management Lifecycle UI Prototyping Requirements Management Governing Board Usability Testing Flow Diagramming
  6. 6. Requirements Influence Mindmap Project Definition/ Business Case Change Training Resources required Management Input to Process are defined Scope Used to develop Used as baseline User Training of application Verifies User’s Needs Prioritizes changes have been met to application Verifies coverage Code Pain points are identified Business UnitDevelopment Used to write code Requirements Improve or decrease Procedures manual procedures Used for researching issues Identifies actual release inclusions Verifies correct Reviewed to implementation Planned in learn application Release Used to identify scenarios to test Application Application Release Support Management Application Testing
  7. 7. Benefits of using aRequirements Management Tool Manage versions and baselines Facilitate impact analysis through tracing Store requirement attributes Integration with testing tool with recognition of coverage Identify reusable requirements 7
  8. 8. Benefits of Prototyping Encourages early user participation and involvement Enhances understanding of how an application will work Promotes consistency in user interface design Early design work can lead to a more usable product in a shorter period of time Can help sell management an idea for a new product 8
  9. 9. Benefits of Usability Testing Reduces costs by being early in the SDLC Adapts to an agile environment Detects missing elements or design flaws UI prototypes are tested with users to insure a design is: • intuitive • effective for the purpose • easy to use • easy to learn • efficient to use 9
  10. 10. Benefits of a Trace Strategy Impact of a change is easier to analyze If a requirement can be traced forward to a design artifact, it validates that the requirement has been designed into the system If a requirement can be traced to a test case, it demonstrates that the requirement has been verified through testing 10
  11. 11. Benefits of integrating with atesting tool Test scripts may be developed quicker Testing coverage is recognized in the Requirements Management Tool Verification that the software was coded correctly– that it matches the requirements Validation that the right software was built – it is what the customer wants 11
  12. 12. Requirements Engineering PhasesThe requirements engineering process consists of:1. Requirements Elicitation – the process of identifying the needs of the user2. Requirements Analysis - the process of refining the requirements to ensure that all stakeholders understand them3. Requirements Specifications – the process of documenting requirements in a consistent, accessible and reviewable way4. Requirements Validation – the process of ensuring that the requirements are correct and will satisfy customer needs5. Requirements Management – the process of managing changes and understanding the impacts of those changes 12
  13. 13. Metrics – why measure & pitfallsWhy… To assess your practice Understand where improvements are neededPitfalls… Difficult to collect the data Too many metrics defined resulting in excessive overhead Metrics that are not simple – know the issue that you are trying to improve 13
  14. 14. Best Practices Measure current data Start by implementing a small set of measures Automate data collection if possible 14
  15. 15. Drivers of change Incomplete or insufficiently detailed requirements Requirements not specified – Incorrect requirements Enhancementor failed to meet user’s needs Change Request Written Requirements specified and is working as designed Requirements specified but coded incorrectly Requirements specified but not coded 15
  16. 16. Root Causes and Recommendations Recommendation: Analyst knowledge Identify training opportunities Recommendation: Ensure Lack of input from business participation of appropriate unit business unit reps Lack of input from Recommendation: Identify PRIMARY end user appropriate end user participants Inadequate user Recommendation: Improve user involvement in participation during design process requirements development 16
  17. 17. Root Causes and Recommendations Recommendation: Requirements were not Improve communication & coded testing coverage Recommendation: Improve Requirements were not communication with software communicated engineers Inadequate interaction with Recommendation: Identify improvements in the software engineers design process and have a requirements review before official turnover meeting Recommendation: Identify improvements in Inadequate task analysis the design process and identify training opportunities 17
  18. 18. Overall Cost Reduction The cost required to fix an error later in thelife cycle increases exponentially: it costs 5-10 timesmore to repair errors during coding phase and between100-200 times more during maintenance phase thanduring the requirements phase [Moore, 2000; Wiegers,1999]. The more the time spent on the requirementsengineering process, the less time is required for thewhole development process since less time is spent onrework. 18
  19. 19. Lifecycle Cost 19
  20. 20. Q&A Thank You. 2009 TM Project Management Consulting Services( 20