Preparing a good business requirements document can be your first step towards minimizing risks and uncertainties, especially when you hire a third party for any business process. The basic objective of this document is to communicate the specific requirements of your business to either your business team or to the vendors and service providers. This document is usually a detailed one and requires a lot of input to serve its purpose. So, here are some pointers that will assist you in drafting proper requirements for your business.
Tip #1 - Clearly Define the Business Problem
That’s the most important point to begin with. Unless the document clearly elucidates what is the issue or problem that the business is trying to overcome, all the efforts will be futile. Whether it’s an issue, a problem or an improvisation, whatever it is – it must be defined in clear words.
Tip #2 - Call for Participation
To determine the true requirements of your business, one person alone is not enough to furnish the details required in the document. Before you begin creating this document, you should hold a meeting in which detailed requirements can be gathered from all the stakeholders. Let the stakeholders talk about the current scenario and point out the problems they are facing. This will help you build a more detailed list of improvisations needed to address current as well as potential problems.
Tip #3 - Define the Scope of the Requirements
Whether you’re inviting proposals from vendors or you’re informing a chosen vendor about the specific requirements of your project, a clearly defined scope is essential. The scope of the requirements should be descriptive enough to give the vendor a
clear idea of what the entire project entails.
Tip #4 - Identify Inputs and Outputs
Every process begins with some inputs that are transformed into outputs. For each business process that you’re planning to sublet, you must specify the related inputs and outputs.
Tip #5 - Setup Quality and Acceptance Standards
Whatever business process you’re subletting, there are sure to be some quality parameters attached to it. You are not simply going to accept whatever the vendor dishes out onto your platter. So, you must setup some acceptance standards regarding the quality of work that you will accept and present them in the business requirements. Giving the vendor details about what is the desired quality of work and how the quality will be gauged, will help ensure that the vendor delivers exactly what the business requires.
Tip #6 - Clearly Elucidate the Functional Requirements
Functional aspects are core to a business’s performance. Thus, the document must detail out all the functional requirements that you expect at the completion of the work.
Tip #7 - Document the Risks and Issues
Listing out the risks and issues will help the vendor to make a proactive approach, and thus the chances of the work getting derailed or delayed will be reduced significantly. So, if the business has already identified some of the associated issues it’s best to document them in the business requirements.
Tip #8 - Setup Schedules and Milestones
To ensure timely delivery of deliverables and completion of work, a detailed work schedule must be in place. Better still, identify the critical milestones and add in a detailed milestones report within the requirements document.
Tip #9 - Use an Appropriate Documentation Procedure
With all the information in place, the next important thing you need is a good template to present the requirements. Using an appropriate business requirements template, will ensure that the information is well presented and that no pertinent piece of information is left out.
Tip #10 - Get the Document Reviewed by the Stakeholders
Before you prepare the final copy of the business requirements document, get it reviewed by all the stakeholders. Make the necessary changes in the document, and when it gets a green signal from everyone – you can prepare the final draft and distribute it to all the concerned parties.
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