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IT Should Forget Development, Focus on Requirements

IT does a great job at development processes that make up the core of work.   Thor Olavsrud, writing for CIO.com, explains that a recent survey by Serena Software Development found IT is pretty much at the top of its game when it comes to core development processes. That isn’t the case with “bookend” processes, however. Requirements management and the delivery of software into production is something that IT still struggles with, and one that is causing some troubles for many IT companies. In the survey, IT scored well on a scale of 1 to 4 in major application lifecycle management. However, communicating with the business is a sticking point for IT. In fact, this was one of the main failures the survey found: “Unlike core application development, the survey responses for requirements management show that IT organizations are still struggling with the fuzzy front end,” Tam says. “While all is not lost, IT organizations should invest in putting a process-not more tools-in place that helps everyone share requirements more easily across a complex technology and organizational landscape. By finalizing requirements early, IT will be able to deliver better software to the business.” So what can IT do to resolve this issue? Simple: revise focus, create automation, and remember process in the early stage and late stage efforts of projects. Gaining requirements that are actually useful and reflect what the customer wants and then delivering that product effectively are two of the most important, if not simply the most important, elements of a project. Your customer doesn’t particularly care how you do a project — just that you understood what they wanted and were able to deliver it in a way that makes sense.

About Anne Grybowski

Anne is a former staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success, with a degree in Media Studies from Penn State University.

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