Join Terri Wagner for an in-depth discussion in this video Reviewing the elicitation task list, part of Project Management Foundations: Requirements.
- Requirements Elicitation is gathering and understanding what the stakeholders and users need. Requirements elicitation requires the right sources, the right information, the right technique, clear organization, evaluation and understanding, then accurate reporting. Performing requirements-elicitation activities are part of requirements development. A good list to guide the steps here would include these five things. Engaging key stakeholders to determine requirements.
Our case study in the Exercise File gives an example of key stakeholders for that project. How do you identify the stakeholders on your projects? If you're looking for guidance here, check out the lynda.com course on Managing Project Stakeholders. Selecting from common requirements-elicitation techniques. There are many techniques available. We'll explore several later in this course. Preparing to conduct selected requirements-elicitation activities.
Communicating with stakeholders using elicitation techniques. Gathering information for requirements analysis and documentation. During your school days, if you ever did research for papers or assignments, or at work, if you've researched your competition, or marketing opportunities for new product development, many of those skills are similar to gathering requirements. Consider your sources of information; then begin your investigation. Talk to people one on one or in groups; review available material.
Pick the elicitation techniques you want to use for your audience and your project. Sometimes I ask the same question in a lot of different ways, just to see what I hear, and if what I've captured so far seems correct. Once you begin writing down the questions you want to ask, save your questions from one project to another, as it might help. The lessons you learn on this project will help you ask better questions on the next project. You'll be asking strategic questions to get the big picture, as well as detailed questions to understand the nuances of how the work is being done today, versus how it should be done tomorrow, and how the stakeholders want it to be done when the project is successfully completed.
The challenge comes when stakeholders don't really know what they want, or express their ideas in general, nonspecific terms. More questions need to be asked for clarification. When stakeholders express their requirements in their own terms, with implicit knowledge of their own work, your communication will focus on that stakeholder being the expert. Making a statement something like, "I need to know what you know "and translate that into words "everyone on the team will understand "so we get this right," might help you capture information that will be better understood by all.
Remember the Scouting motto, "Be prepared?" We'll continue building on your preparedness skills as we move through this course.
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- Classifying requirements
- Developing requirements
- Investigating requirements
- Documenting requirements
- Validating requirements
- Managing changing requirements