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For Application Development & Delivery Professionals

Thinking Lean: How Much Requirements Documentation Is "Just Enough"?

Forrester's AD&D Community Offers Relevant Insight And Pragmatic Advice

December 29, 2010


  • By Mary Gerush
  • with Mike Gilpin,
  • Alissa Anderson

Why Read This Report

In traditional app dev shops, business analysts (BAs) create standardized, lengthy, text-heavy Microsoft Word documents to represent software requirements, but creating and consuming this documentation takes time that most BAs and stakeholders just don't have. On the other hand, Agile methods advocate that teams create "just enough" requirements documentation to meet the need. They use less-formal documentation, more pictures, and less text. Traditional shops have heard the "just enough" message, but they don't know how to apply it in their environments. The Forrester Community For Application Development & Delivery (AD&D) Professionals offers advice: By considering the documentation's intent and consumers, team dynamics, and the project/problem at hand, business analysts and other requirements authors can determine how much requirements documentation is "just enough" to maximize value and eliminate waste.

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