Ignoring The Past will Bite You

September 9, 2010 by
Filed under: Requirements Gathering Tips 

A Big Mistake with requirements gathering is to ignore the Past. You need to think how the business got where it is today. What were the decisions made to come up with the current processes.

You are asked to gather requirements on a existing process and it all seems simple. There in front of you is the end result so all you need to do is document the process that creates it and look at ways to improve it. This is where junior Business Analysts slip up. It could have taken years to get to this end result. All you initially see are the refined processes that support today’s end result. You are not seeing the exceptions to the processes that come along once in a blue moon that require change. So imagine if you propose a solution that is rigid and expensive and then a week after implementation the exception occurs. Now how good will your new processes look?

When gathering requirements for an existing process or processes you need to always ask how likely and how often it will change based on past experience and plan accordingly.

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