Insight

Insight from Agora Consultants

Requirements Management and Team Foundation Server

Managing requirements on a software project can be tedious.  Most tools or process are not connected to Team Foundation Server which makes traceability difficult.  Agora has solved this issue with Requirements Tracker. In the course of doing large development projects for clients we are required to thoroughly document the application requirements prior to development.  Although we use Team Foundation Server for our development process we have found that the requirements management portion does not facilitate the iterative nature of requirements gathering and approval. Typically our business analysts will meet with clients and document the business requirements through a series of application design sessions.  These meetings typically occur at the client site in a meeting room where we may or may not have access to our servers.  In the past the requirements would be gathered in Word or Excel and hundreds of pages of requirements would be passed back and forth between the BA and the project team until agreement was reached (if ever).  Once the entire document was approved it would be handed off to the development team for decomposition into tasks which would be created in TFS. The problems with this approach include changing requirements would result in an entire new document that would need approval and complete loss of traceability of the requirement through the development phase. To solve this problem we wrote Requirements Tracker.  Requirements Tracker is the first requirements management tool built specifically to work with TFS.  Requirements Tracker allows a BA to document project goals, user groups, user stories, features, requirements, and screen designs all while working online or offline.  When the BA synchronizes and marks items for review the project team can review an comment on any item through a web-based or Silverlight application.  Once the requirement is approved it can be published directly to TFS.  Once in TFS the requirement can be linked directly to tasks providing full traceability throughout the development process. For more details on Requirements Tracker see www.agorainc.com/rt/.