There are a number of essential and necessary requirements related to software development. In reality, the word ‘requirements’ can be interpreted in different ways, but any rules and guidelines that are intended to make the project progresses better should be considered as perfectly legitimate. In general, we should come up with a plan that could bring all the plans together. What we need to consider is what consumers or clients expectations are? Sometimes, requirements could be based on objectives for the software. Requirements may also delineate functions and capabilities that need to be performed by users. We should be aware of design specifications that the software needs to have, both functional and non-functional. Non-functional factors may include implementation constraints and regulatory compliance.
Extensive research could provide us with reliable and timely knowledge about requirements. There are crucial areas that are essential for software development. By having proper requirements, we may have lower development cost and more polished software. In general, we should use concise and clear language for requirements. It is generally essential to be specific, because indistinct and vague words should be avoided. In fact, we could be looking for trouble if we use words like optimize, intuitive, user-friendly, simple, efficient and especially, etc. We should save these words for advertising campaigns and requirements should contain words that provide detailed descriptions of what the team should do. If some of the information is still not known, until all details could be worked out, we should use the words “To Be Determined” or TBD.
When we have requirements, it is important for us to assign priorities. We should clearly clarify features that the development team need to be aware of. If there is something that needs to be sacrificed for more essential ones, then we should explain, why it is necessary. We may also need to leave room for adjustments, so bright new ideas and innovative changes can be introduced when necessary. It is crucial to ensure adequate stakeholder involvement when designing software. Surprises are usually bad in a software development project, so it is important to identify key decision-making factors in the project. We should know what we could do to ensure that the project will still move forward, despite all the challenges. We should also identify key individuals who can drive changes, without affecting costs and schedules.
Regulatory requirements can be the major driver in any software development project. The government could be expecting us to adhere to various security compliances if the software will be used for specific financial and government agencies. These regulations will need to be identified during the requirement identification process. Software needs to be properly tested so it will pass specific security regulations before it is usable in the market.
It is not recommended to skimp on requirements, because this could potentially paralyze the whole project. Improper requirements could stall the project, not just delaying it. Once we understand all the basics, we should be able to get on with it. It is a bad idea to rewrite project requirements endlessly.