- 1. Requirements Management
- 1 What is Requirements Management?
- 2 Why do you need Requirements Management?
- 3 Four Fundamentals of Requirements Management
- 4 Adopting an Agile Approach to Requirements Management
- 5 Conquering the 5 Biggest Challenges of Requirements Management
- 6 Three Reasons You Need a Requirements Management Solution
- 2. Writing Requirements
- 1 Functional requirements examples and templates
- 2 Product requirements document template and examples
- 3 How to write system requirement specification (SRS) documents
- 4 Jama Software Requirements Advisor
- 5 How to Write an Effective Product Requirements Document
- 6 Functional vs. Non-functional requirements
- 7 What Are Non-Functional Requirements and How Do They Impact Product Development?
- 8 Characteristics of Effective Software Requirements and Software Requirements Specifications (SRS)
- 9 8 Do’s and Don’ts for Writing Requirements
- 3. Requirements Gathering and Management Processes
- 4. Requirements Traceability
- 1 What is Requirements Traceability and Why Does It Matter for Product Teams?
- 2 How to Overcome Organizational Barriers to Live Requirements Traceability
- 3 Requirements Traceability, What Are You Missing?
- 4 Four Best Practices for Requirements Traceability
- 6 What Are the Benefits of End-to-End Traceability During Product Development?
- 5. Requirements Management Tools and Software
- 6. Requirements Validation and Verification
- 7. Meeting Regulatory Compliance and Industry Standards
- 8. Project Management
- 9. Measuring Requirements
8 Do’s and Don’ts for Writing Requirements
Every word matters when writing requirements. Something as simple as adding an adverb or using “should” instead of “must” can create ambiguity that confuses engineers and sets a project back.
Better requirements lead to clearer, more effective communication between stakeholders. This drives the entire organization toward greater transparency, less rework, and, accelerated development… without sacrificing quality. While writing requirements is both an art and a science that will vary by context, there are a few best practices to consider.
Follow these top dos and don’ts for writing requirements and you’ll find yourself with both clear and traceable requirements across the product development lifecycle.
1. DO: Use a Requirements Template
A template gives consistent structure to requirements. It can be in a user story or systems engineering format, either of which provides uniform construction to support easier testing.
2. DON’T: Use Adverbs
“Quickly,” “easily,” and other adverbs don’t provide clear guidance to testers. Instead, focus on acceptance criteria that are testable and measurable.
RELATED ARTICLE: Best Practices Guide for Writing Requirements
3. DO: Standardize Your Language
The English language contains numerous words with similar meanings in everyday usage. Settle on a few to represent agreed-upon meanings, like “shall” for binding high-priority requirements.
4. DON’T: Be Ambiguous
Requirements are often ambiguous because they’re too general, e.g., “the device shall be easy to use.” Get more specific, whether that means setting a clear benchmark or naming a specific color.
5. DO: Use Active Voice and Specific Adjectives
Use active voice verbs. For instance, “the car shall withstand…” is clearer than “the car shall be enhanced to withstand…” Also select specific adjectives instead of standbys like “user-friendly” and “compatible.”
6. DON’T: Mix Design Specifications into Requirements
When possible, aim to remove design from requirements, as the latter describe a need while the former constitute a response to that need. Design-free requirements give engineers more freedom.
7. DO: Regularly Review Requirements with Stakeholders
Reviewing your requirements with others is a reliable way to ensure shared understanding. Collaborating within a real-time platform lets teams exchange feedback, ensure testability, and minimize rework.
8. DON’T: Rely on Negative Requirements Statements
Negative statements can introduce ambiguity, since there are virtually infinite things that any system will “not do” en route to fulfilling its positive requirements. Check negative statements
In This Webinar, We Cover Best Practices for Writing Requirements
Requirement: a condition or capability needed by a user to solve a problem or achieve an objective.