Get SMART about writing Requirements

 

Not another acronym I hear you say…..Well, actually unlike many of the acronyms we come across I promise you this one is really helpful.  There’s every chance you’ve come across this acronym before since it’s popular for providing criteria to guide in the setting of objectives.

Within the context of writing requirement we can adopt this simple technique to validate that we have a sound set of requirements that can be issued for review.

Business Requirements are a statement of what a system needs to do to enable the business to meet their goals and objectives.  When you have drafted requirements, always ask yourself if they are SMART.  SMART requirements are:

Specific

Requirements must say exactly what is needed by the business.  Specific requirements must be clear, simple, consistent and at an appropriate level of detail.

Measurable

Requirements must be assessable.  It must be possible, once the system has been developed, to verify that the requirement has been met.

Achievable

Requirements must be implementable within the constraints of the project and existing systems.  If you can, sound out your requirements with a developer to ensure feasibility.

Relevant

Requirements must be pertinent to the subject matter.  You must be able to connect a requirement back to the overall business objective.

Testable

Requirements must be evincible.  It must be possible to design a test or come up with a means to determine if a solution has met the requirement.

 

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