by Kelley Bruns, CBAP®, PMP®, CSM
One of my dogs ended up missing two days ago, but I couldn’t look for her in the usual places where she likes to go exploring. The reason why I couldn’t search for her in the usual places was because we were climbing a mountain. We turned our backs on her for an instant and she was gone – this is part of working with an Alaskan malamute – they love to seek adventures and they are a bit thick-headed. My first instinct was try to follow where she went, but that’s fairly difficult to do when you are on a rocky ledge. By the time we got off the ledge she was nowhere in sight – she was missing and our other malamute provided no clues to help guide us to her. There were no responses to our voice commands or whistles.
This experience got me thinking about missing requirements. It’s easy to get in the habit of looking in the usual places and using the same process to find requirements, but isn’t that why we miss them? It’s beneficial to get out of a rut by using other tools and techniques in order to not miss requirements. The Business Analysis Body of Knowledge® provides us with multiple options to help us improve in this area; a few examples include text, matrices, and diagrams/models. According to a 2010 study performed by Meta Group, 60% – 80% of project failures can be attributed directly to poor requirements gathering, analysis, and management.
If this is an area you would like to influence and change in a positive way at your workplace, contact our ASPE sales team today to identify the best path to get you there. And, you don’t need to worry about falling off of a rocky ledge to find what you have been missing.
As for my dog, we searched and searched and finally returned home hoping she wouldn’t be found by a grizzly bear or mountain lion. Once we got there we saw a tired but happy dog waiting for us to come back home. She beat us back! I learned a valuable lesson that day – just like eliciting requirements it’s easy search in all the wrong places.