For many projects, deciding what needs to be done is more difficult than getting it done. It doesn't matter how talented a development team is, if they're not sent out to accomplish the right goals, they can't be expected to find success. This is why proper software project requirements are essential to producing high-quality software. In this Essential Guide, we'll take a look at the best ways to find and define requirements and examine Agile approaches to managing requirements and compare them with traditional ideas about requirements. We'll look at how requirements change as we go from Web to mobile, define some of the roles that lead to better requirements and troubleshoot a few miscellaneous requirements challenges.
How to decide what needs to be done
The first thing a development team needs when they first start a brand-new software project is some idea of what needs doing. In most organizations, this means developing a set of software requirements. Although we probably all know someone in the office who would disagree, there's no one right way to gather requirements. Finding the right methods to gather and manage requirements for a particular team and a particular project can be tough.
The links below offer a framework for understanding some of the common options for gathering requirements, compare and contrast Agile requirements practices with more traditional ideas, and take a close look at some particular Agile requirements techniques.
Does moving to Agile development eliminate up-front requirements gathering? Does it mean the development team takes responsibility for requirements instead of the business side? Continue Reading
2Know your role-
The tester's role in software requirements is not always clear
If getting requirements right is the No. 1 challenge for a development team, then knowing how to effectively contribute to those requirements is the biggest challenge for an individual. We don't want to put in too little effort, but then again, we don't want to put in too much. We want to make sure our voice and concerns are heard, but we don't want to talk over the voices and concerns of our teammates. Check out the links below to get a look at the evolving role of software testers in the requirements gathering process, as well as some insights on how to help developers do their part.
Learn how QA testers should participate in the requirements definition process in this expert response. Continue Reading
Learn when and how a business analyst should engage developers during the process of defining requirements. Continue Reading
3Requirements for mobile-
As technologies change, requirements do too
A decade ago, mobile apps were relatively unknown. Five years ago a mobile app was nice to have. Now, mobile applications are becoming the baseline. The software that runs on mobile devices is still software, so many of the old rules apply. However, just as there were significant changes between standalone software and Web applications, mobile software requires slightly different thinking from traditional Web apps. Mobile devices are just different. Learn more about the concerns mobile and embedded software developers need to contend with in these tips.
Learn where to start with requirements for software on embedded devices such as the FitBit. Continue Reading
Learn the most effective way of defining requirements for users' end experience. Continue Reading
4Problems and solutions-
Common requirements challenges and fixes
This is collection of tips addresses some of our readers' common concerns. Keep reading to see what our requirements experts say about common requirements myths, ways to look at requirements, and better ways to collect and manage software requirements.
Requirements management and the requirements process are sometimes used to mean the same thing, but customers should be aware that there are differences, and that tools often do not perform all of the tasks in the requirements process. Continue Reading