collecting requirements

The process of collecting requirements

When a project starts, project managers need to collect requirements to determine and manage stakeholders’ needs. In fact, it is particularly important to understand what are the requirements of people who have an interest in the project. These people have to be involved in the process of collecting requirements.

Project managers have the responsibility to gather all the requirements and not to miss any of them. This will certainly contribute to the project success. In addition, the requirements represent the stakeholders’ expectation about the project result.

For this reason, it is useful to remember the definition of the Triple Constraint. In fact, the triple constraint says that the success of the project depends on its budget, deadlines and features.

To be successful project managers can use appropriate requirement gathering tools during the project lifecycle, such as:

  • Brainstorming
  • Interviews
  • Focus groups
  • Questionnaires and surveys
  • Benchmarking

Brainstorming

During brainstorming, different people from various teams work to list requirements for a project. In addition, in each brainstorming session, stakeholders can generate new ideas which help to identify new requirements.

Interviews

Interviews help the project manager to interview experienced project participants, stakeholders and subject matter experts. They will help project managers to identify and define the features and characteristics of the product deliverables.

Focu groups

Focus groups involve skilled stakeholders and subject matter experts to learn about their expectations about a specific project. In addition, focus groups help to get a specific set of stakeholders’ requirements.

Questionnaires and surveys

If there are several stakeholders involved in a project it is useful to use questionnaires and surveys. For instance, if there are dozens of stakeholders in the project, collecting information from each individual will consume a lot of time.

Benchmarking

Benchmarking is a process that compares the actual or planned practices. In addition, it identifies best practices, produces new ideas, and provides a structure for measuring the actual performance.

Keep in mind

Afterwards, once the collect requirement process is over, a new document is produced. This document is important as it provides the foundation for defining and managing the scope of the project. Requirements also define the WBS (Work Breakdown Structure).

Francesco Pecoraro

Francesco has extensive experience as a project, program and portfolio manager, project management officer (PMO), digital transformation and strategic consultant. He is also considered a communication, public speaking and leadership expert.

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