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Better Requirements Means less Retesting and Fewer Cycles

  • 03/06/2011
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  • Posted by EuroSTAR
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Getting the requirements right in the first place will greatly reduce the overall effort which in turn leads to less retesting and fewer cycles, while converse of this will result in more rework and poorly conceived architectural changes that lead to unstable code. As defects get injected into the software right from the requirements stage, high-quality requirements form the basis for the successful delivery of quality software.

Enterprises’ failure to design accurate software requirements will often result in higher cost, more time and often end up having several defects in the later stages of the software life cycle. The costs of fixing the bugs/defects will increase as we get deeper into the software life cycle. According to Gartner, “finding and fixing defects during the development of the requirements is more than six times more cost-effective than doing so during the development phase”.

Defects in requirements can prove to be very costly for enterprises as it involves large amounts of rework or sometimes even a project failure or cancellation. The effectiveness of the development and testing teams to deliver quality software mostly depends on how appropriate the requirements are documented. Some of the attributes enterprises must ensure before requirements get into design and implementation stage are whether they are complete, testable, correct, current, essential, feasible, and relevant.

Managers, business analysts, and quality assurance teams will have to play a more collective role, if enterprises have to meet all these criteria for requirements. In today’s highly collaborative environments, business analysts work closely with business stakeholders and hold direct knowledge of the business processes hence they have a crucial role in designing accurate and complete requirements documentation that forms the base for testers to create the test cases.

While the collaboration of testers possessing knowledge of strategic quality requirements with business analysts and developers will help enterprises to focus on what’s critical for test coverage in the given time available. Hence, establishing a culture of BA-QA teamwork helps in designing better requirements, which ultimately results in less rework and less retesting.

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