Employee procedures are one of your strongest collaboration tools for the elicitation of business requirements. As you perform the elicitation analysis for process improvement projects, use your employee procedures as a platform to identify business needs, formulate requirements and conduct impact analysis.
Identifying Business Needs
The success of process improvement projects greatly relies on being able to properly identify business needs. Business needs are the issues that negatively affect the efficiency and/or the quality of the work performed in the process. The process has efficiency issues where the work being performed is taking too long or there are quality issues that require extra work steps to correct the quality problems.
Use your procedures to pinpoint these efficiency/quality issues by identifying the steps within the procedures that slow down the process or the extra steps required to address quality problems. Demonstrate with your procedures, the steps that will be removed or modified as part of your process improvement project. By using your procedures as a collaboration platform to develop this list, you can reduce the confusion that can accompany discussions about business needs.
You can use your procedures to pinpoint where the new requirement functionality (user interface or automation) will be implemented in the process. Even before the requirement design details have been fully flushed out, you can present to stakeholders the procedure location where they can expect to see the new functionality. Using procedures, you can provide the stakeholders with simulations of how the new requirements will work in the process.
Conduct Impact Analysis
Procedures can be used to perform due diligence analysis to identify other process areas that may be adversely impacted by the new functionality. Then you can assess what (if any) procedural steps need to be adjusted to prepare the users for the new changes. The use of procedures allows you to conducted a comprehensive analysis of possible impacts resulting from the new requirements.
Post Elicitation Benefits
The procedure information identified during elicitation can further benefit stakeholders later in the development process. For example:
- Process owners can factor in the procedure information to help make decisions on prioritizing which requirements will be developed and which will be placed on the backlog.
- The procedure information will help guide developers with their programming efforts by providing them a better understanding of the purpose behind the requirements.
- Employee training will greatly benefit from the use of procedures during elicitation of requirements. By identifying the affected procedures during elicitation, you have already performed a portion of the work needed for updating the procedures that will be used for training.
When you begin your next business analysis project, keep in mind that procedure information is a valuable knowledge resource that can be used from the beginning to the end of the process improvement project.