Learn about what elicitation and analysis is, and how it is important to requirements.
- You know what it's like to try on a piece of clothing and it just doesn't fit? And it looks so good on the hanger, meeting all of your requirements. This happens to users of software and products all the time. How do we truly know if a solution we're working on is right for the stakeholders, customers, and the organization? How do we know it fits and they'll love it? Typically, more elaboration and discovery from the original request is needed to deliver what these groups want and need.
That's why elicitation and analysis of requirements is critical. Let's take a look at what each of these critical pieces are and why they're so important. When working at a furious pace like many of us do, it's easy to get caught up in what everyone thinks the solution should be. Stakeholders have ideas, developers have ideas, everyone has ideas. But the actual needs of the customers are found in the magic of elicitation and analysis.
Elicitation is the discover and progressive elaboration of understanding the needs of our stakeholders and customers. It involves a set of techniques that go beyond what's stated, beyond what the data says, and beyond everyone's ideas. To dig a probe deeper into what's unsaid. The process helps the team evolve their ideas into requirements that will take a solution or product into alignment with what delights the customer, and serves the organization strategy.
We elicit whether or not we're working on solving a defect, understanding requirements for an enhancement request, or developing a new product, service, or process. Next, let's look at analysis. Analysis takes the information elicited, and looks at where the gaps and impacts are. You do this by breaking it down, and looking at various angles. The angles you can examine are of a sequence, data, logical rules, the people involved, handoffs, and the various relationships that exist.
It's about how they all work together to achieve the goal of the product, and improve the customer experience. Analysis involves a combination of thinking, inspiring dialog, and analysis with others. It involved modeling, diagramming, and documenting to bring out the various angles to ensure impact, gaps, scenarios, and connections are well understood by the team. Elicitation and analysis are easy to neglect in a day filled with meetings, emails, and interruptions.
What matters most is that we make the time to consciously elicit and analyze using a variety of techniques. The benefits of ensuring these critical pieces happen are far-reaching, and will improve the project's success and customer's experience.
LinkedIn Learning (Lynda.com) is a PMI Registered Education Provider. This course qualifies for professional development units (PDUs). To view the activity and PDU details for this course, click here.
The PMI Registered Education Provider logo is a registered mark of the Project Management Institute, Inc.
- What's elicitation and analysis?
- The relationship of elicitation to analysis
- Elicitation techniques
- Using interviews, brainstorming, and experiments to elicit requirements
- Analysis techniques
- Working with process models, context diagrams, and decision tables
- Adding to a process, product, or system