Tips of the Month
How to get complete requirements
By Tiffany Dahlberg


Last month, I discussed the three reasons your projects fail:  One of those reasons was incomplete requirements.  Most people don't know that the art and science of eliciting requirements is actually a knowledge area and profession called, Business Analysis.  Collecting requirements is necessary for a complete scope of work, yet few people get training on how to do this properly.  I had to learn the hard way for several years myself.  Here are some tips to help you:

1)   Identify all of your stakeholders.  Any time you have a project or complicated task to complete at work, you will have stakeholders; a stakeholder is anyone who is impacted by your solution and/or has influence over your outcome.  Often people don't include those who have influence as stakeholders and that causes major problems because they are most often the ones who have unmet requirements that lead to project delays, rework, and ultimately project failure.

2)   Determine their expectations.  Expectations are often unstated requirements.  It's easy not to meet expectations when you don't know what they are. Don't start conversations with your stakeholders by asking what their requirements are because most of the time you'll get blank stares.  Instead ask your stakeholders about their expectations; they are usually ready to disclose that in detail.  Listen carefully to get hints about their needs, which will inform you about their requirements.  

3)   Elicit requirements. Unfortunately, requirements are not simply lying around for us to gather; it's not that simple. We need to elicit requirements, meaning we need to draw them out through interviews, workshops, and observations.  Stakeholders aren't the only source for requirements, so also check existing policies, survey results, reports, regulations, training materials, and other documents to uncover requirements.  

Getting a complete, correct, and concise set of requirements requires patience, diligence, and expertise.  I was responsible for getting requirements for 17 years before I received training on how to do so properly and efficiently.  As a result, I help others by providing training in Business Analysis.  If you are interested in training on how to elicit, clarify, and validate requirements, please contact us.

When Tiffany speaks...


Due to popular demand Tiffany Dahlberg, Founder of Ready2ACT will be speaking at several events this spring:


Go to our public events page for more details!

Affordable Online Training
We offer a variety of training options in Business Analysis, Communication, Creativity & Innovation, Leadership, Management, Project Management, and Six Sigma

Follow us on TwitterView our profile on LinkedInLike us on Facebook
Sincerely, View our videos on YouTube
Tiffany Dahlberg
                           Ready2ACT Training & Facilitation Promo Video