Defining Good Requirements for Business Process Improvement

Business Process Analysis May 19, 2023

This paper focuses on how to define ‘good’ requirements in order to ensure the success of your business process improvement project.

Much has been written by industry experts who identify poor or incomplete requirements as the root cause of most project failures, and much has been written about the practice of business analysis and the unique skills required for Business Analysts to get requirements right. This white paper will focus on how to define good requirements rather than who defines the requirements.

The IIBA® defines a Business Analyst as:

“any person who performs business analysis activities no matter what their job titles or organization role may be, these include: business systems analysts, systems analysts, requirements engineers, process analysts, product manager, product owners, enterprise analysts, business architect, management consultants, or any person who performs the tasks described in the BABOK® Guide vs2”

For further reading on this topic, see writings by International Institute of Business Analysis®; OMG; Modern Analyst website; CIO Research Groups, Alexander, Ian and Neil Maiden 2002 – Writing Better Requirements; Scott Ambler – Agile Model-Driven Development with UML; Kathleen Hass – Translating Business Strategies into Valuable Solutions, Karl Wiegers (various), to name a few.

Good business analysis equals good requirements. Good business analysis helps to make sure the right solution is built at the right time, for the right reasons. By focusing on an organization’s business objectives, tracing them to a viable solution with the necessary set of features and then tracing further to detailed requirements, Business Analysts ensure that the organization’s efforts are focused on the right features and requirements for the right reasons. 

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