Tag Archives: IT Strategy

Four Trips to Midnight

Midnight is a dark time, like a looming deadline which you’re pretty sure you can’t meet. No one is ever sure exactly how they got into the position of running up against midnight, but it usually means long hours late at night – and lots of caffeine. Perhaps it also includes a dose of wistful thinking and wondering about the project plan that seems to be growing like David Banner in a snit. Sometimes it happens, the work load just got misjudged, or the magic of juggling priorities and fate landed a few choice lemons in your lap. Maybe it’s a different problem altogether.

I’ve noticed lots of analysts have trouble with estimating the amount of time it will take to complete business analysis and the elicitation and documentation of requirements for a project. I remember evaluating a team where the most forgiving management stakeholder I interviewed stated they were currently at 300% of the expected time needed to get requirements – and that was just her personal time… not elapsed time (which was months over schedule). Estimating analyst effort is tough because business analysis is inherently about taking a concept that is airy-fairy-fluffy, and turning it into something that is concrete-with-dimension. Here are some ideas to think about late at night – hopefully some of these will prevent you from burning the midnight oil on your next project.

Continue reading

The Requirements Maturity Model Explained

The Requirements Maturity Model (RMM) is a means to benchmark an organization’s effectiveness in requirements definition and management by looking at maturity in six underlying capabilities. Like similar standards-based models, it classifies companies based on observed, tangible competency in each capability to make an objective assessment of overall maturity.

How is the Requirements Maturity Model Structured?

IAG’s Requirements Maturity Model has two dimensions:

Maturity Level: IAG’s is a staged maturity model similar to those used by several industry standards bodies. An organization progresses up the ladder (to the right) as goals are achieved and thresholds surpassed. Each level of maturity shifts the emphasis to different requirement practice characteristics. Each level builds a foundation for succeeding levels.

Capability Area: Six capability areas are assessed and combined to determine the maturity level of a organization’s requirements management practice. These six are the fundamental building blocks for requirements definition and management and include:

 
  • Process: Definition, usage, and management of requirement procedures.
  • Practices & Techniques: Definition of how analysts will perform work, the efficiency and effectiveness of these activities.
  • Technology: Provision, usage, and integration of software tools in the context of the requirements practice.
  • Staff Competency: Level of knowledge, skills, and ability of the workforce.
  • Deliverables: Definition, production, and usage of work products as output from the requirement process.
  • Organization: Organizational model and services delivered to stakeholders, the provision of resources and resource management in the delivery of these services, and the framework of process and tool governance.

 

Continue reading