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Friday, September 30, 2011

Oh The Joys of Requirement Walk Throughs - Part 1

This week has been quite a busy week as I was part of facilitating walk throughs. What made these walk throughs a little more challenging for me is that I had to walk through requirements that I did not write nor had all the background on how these requirements came about. I am currently in a requirements manager role for this particular project where I provide leadership and direction to the business analysts on the project. Sometimes it's challenging enough to just put out fires and provide that direction, in addition to filling in gaps when needed. I have found though that if you have built great relationships with those on the project team, most people with help you in any way they can in the situation I was in. So here is how the week leading up to walk throughs went.

1. Since there was another large project doing walk throughs the same week of my project that utilized some of the same resources, there was some coordination that needed to be done between myself and the other requirements manager, as well as the impacted parties. Agenda's had to be created to outline where the overlap was. Once everyone agreed on how to accommodate the overlap, I worked on my agenda to where each business analyst would present all of their topics at one time, meaning in the same session or sessions, taking into account timezones. We are quite a virtual team with business analysts in other timezones as well as our business partners in other timezones.
2. I then worked with the business analysts to define the plan on how we conduct our virtual walk throughs. Each person would essentially bring up their own business requirements template and present their requirements. Once each business analyst completed their sections I would incorporate into the final document as approved requirements. We use SharePoint for project documentation but i wanted to be constantly updating the online version during the walk throughs so i did not want to do the checking in and out. Yes I did multi-task while walk throughs occurred.
3. The PM sent out the agenda to the broader project team so everyone knew our plan and what sessions they would want to attend.

So at this point we are prepared for walk throughs to begin...but are we?

Look for another blog post that discusses some of the things that can occur during a walk through and how you can handle those situations to reach your outcome. These will be real life experiences i encountered.

Paula Bell

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