Writing Effective Requirements Course

Writing Effective Requirements Course

Writing Effective Requirements Course



On-site: 2 Days

Brief Description:

The Writing Effective Requirements Course focuses on how to write the different levels of requirements effectively. The requirements training class provides a requirements model using the use case requirements gathering and writing techniques. The workshop is one third lecture and two thirds hands on exercises for writing project scope definitions, business requirements and detailed requirements.

Who Should Attend?:

Those who will find this of value are the Business Managers, Business Analysts, Business System Analysts, Project Managers, Solutions Leads, Technical Leads, Quality Assurance, Business Subject Matter Experts (SMEs), Architects, Designers and Developers.


Each training participant receives a Training Handbook with sample templates, guidelines and checklists for writing requirements definition documents.

Writing Effective Requirements

The class focuses on industry standards and best practices for writing requirements documentation needed for project scope definition, business requirements analysis and the functional system specifications necessary for IT projects. The seminar focus is on:

  • Understanding the different levels of requirements
  • The requirements management process
  • Characteristics and guidelines for writing effective requirements
  • Communication techniques for gathering requirements
  • Writing skills and instructions for writing successful scoping and requirements documents
  • Practical exercises in writing problem statements, business objectives, high-level requirements, non-functional requirements, screen and reporting specifications
  • Writing and critiquing use cases and requirements using guidelines and checklists

The objectives of the training are to:

  • Define best practices and standards for writing requirements and solutions documents
  • Provide practical exercises for using requirements gathering techniques using UML diagrams and use cases
  • Writing and critiquing requirements and system specifications using industry standards and best practice guidelines and checklists

Day 1 AM

Course Introduction (8:30 – 9 AM)
Requirements Management Best Practices (9 – 10am)
  • Introduction to Requirements
    • Types of Requirements
    • Different levels of requirements
  • Overview of Joint Application Development
  • Session Methodology- Preparation, Workshop and Follow-up
  • Iterative Requirements Approach
  • Timeboxing
  • Requirements roles and responsibilities
  • Key success factors for requirements definition
Requirements Gathering Techniques (10:15 – 11 AM)
  • Brainstorming
  • Storyboarding
  • Interviews
  • Kit Reviews (information used for walk-throughs)
  • Business Models- use case diagram, business process flows, use cases
Discovery Phase- Defining the Scope (11am – 12 NOON)
  • Writing effective project initiation deliverables:
    • Business problem statement
    • Success criteria/objectives
    • Business parameters
    • Solution Alternative Analysis
  • Exercise- Discovering and writing business problem statements, success criteria/objectives, business parameters

Day 1 PM

Discovery Phase- Defining the Scope (continued) (1- 3 PM)
  • How to write effective scope statements & assumptions
  • Interviewing, questioning and active listening skills
  • Exercise- Interviewing and active listening skills
  • Exercise- Writing the project scope statement & assumptions
  • Building the context diagram
  • Building the use case diagram
  • Exercise- Creating the context diagram and use case diagram
Discovery Phase- Requirements Analysis (4 – 5 PM)
  • Documenting requirements in iterations- understanding the different levels of requirements
  • Characteristics of writing effective requirements
  • Instructions and guidelines for writing effective requirements
  • Requirements attributes
  • Quality measures and checklists for writing effective requirements
  • How to identify and write effective business rules
  • Building the “To Be” business process flows and activity diagrams with swimlanes
  • Exercise- Creating the “to be” business process flow
  • Exercise- Identifying and writing quality requirements and business rules

Day 2 AM

Discovery Phase- Requirements Analysis – Use Cases (8:30 – 10 AM)
  • Benefits of using the business use case to identify requirements
  • How to write the high level use case
    • Guidelines for the use case iterations
    • Templates and Quality Checklists
  • Exercise- Writing a business use case for business requirements
  • How to build user stories
  • Exercise- Creating user stories
Discovery Phase- Requirements Analysis (continued) (10:15 – 12:00 AM)
  • How to write effective non-functional requirements
  • IEEE Categories
  • Non-functional definitions and examples
  • Exercise- Writing quality non-functional requirements
  • Capturing business requirements using site maps and identifying inventories of screens, reports and system interfaces
  • Iteration Plan – What is the thought process for building a plan?
    • Setting priorities
    • Creating the build plan

Day 2 PM

Discovery Phase- Detailed Requirements Use Cases (1 – 4 AM)
  • How to build an activity diagram with swimlanes using UML notation
  • Using brainstorming and storyboarding techniques to create the draft screens
  • Screen mockup data field descriptions
  • Defining the Report Specifications
    • Key components of the report specifications requirements
    • Report Mock-ups
    • Report Specifications Template
  • Exercise- creating the activity diagram with swimlanes for the use case, writing the detailed use case, creating the screen and report specifications with the data field descriptions
Quality Assurance (4:00– 4:30 PM)
  • Quality measures for checking requirements
  • Techniques for quality checking requirements
    • Desk checking using checklists and questions for validating requirements
    • Conducting Work Sessions for requirements validation
    • Requirements Inspection Process and Sign-off for requirements validation
  • Change control management
    • How to control requirements defects and change requests
    • Tracing requirements defects and change requests after sign-off

Day 3 Lab (optional)

The participants will use a real life project or provided case study to create and critique best practice cases. The business analysis artifacts used for the requirements gathering lab will be the Problem Statement, Business Objectives, Use Case Model, Activity Diagram with swimlanes, Business Use Cases, User Stories, Detailed Use Cases and Screen Specifications. The case work will simulate how to create multiple cases/scenarios. The Instructor will mentor and critique the deliverables with the participants.

Wrap up (4:30 – 5 PM)

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