RESPEC utilizes an Agile methodology for our development projects and has a long history of successfully leading requirements and business process discovery sessions where the outcome has been process flow diagrams, data flow maps, and/or requirements traceability matrices. 


  A kickoff meeting is held to review the project charter, scope, plan and any other project material from the stakeholders and project leadership.  The identified Product Owner will share a vision for the product.  The goal is to leave this meeting with a shared vision for the product outcome. 

  With the Product Owner, a schedule is determined for Joint Application Discovery (JAD) sessions.  The schedule takes into consideration the shared vision, product scope documents, the availability of Subject Matter Experts (SME), and any cyclical business needs which can affect having the right people at the JAD sessions. 

  The JAD sessions may be planned such that they are part either of the initial set of sprints or they will be precursor work completed prior to Sprint 1 start. 

  Working with the Product Owner and other leadership, the Business Analyst (BA) will outline the SME role which includes identifying the activities SMEs are required to attend and the need for their presence as the product is developed.  The business voice is key to producing a successful product.

  Communication is sent to the SMEs and to development team members who will also attend these sessions. 

  Preferably prior to the first session, the BA knows the experience or knowledge each SME has in regards to Agile principles, values and activities.  As needed, training will be included in the initial JAD session to ensure all understand the Agile process RESPEC will follow for requirements gathering, Story documentation, roadmap planning and upcoming sprint cadence and activities. 

Requirements Sessions or initial sprint work:

  The first session or sprint is held at a location most convenient to the business and Product Owner, to limit their travel time. 

  The BA facilitates the session and gathers Stories or process flows as needed.  Our preferred mode, is to identify requirements as Stories.  Each Story contains a title, description in the form of “As [role] I want/need [what description] so that [intended outcome]” along with Acceptance Criteria which assists knowing what done means to the business. 

  If we need to detail a current or future-state process flow to support the Story, the BA will typically use a whiteboard to capture a walkthrough of the business process as the conversation unfolds.  After the session, these will be captured in electronic form so that they can be attached to applicable Stories. 

  The produced backlog of Stories generated becomes the initial requirements list for the product.  It is also an ever-changing list.  This is because Stories are a promise for future conversations.  Each Story may be updated as the project progresses and the Product Owner, SMEs and development team learn more about the actual product desired. 

  Each Story should be traceable back to the project scope.  A traceability matrix or other form of mapping can be provided as is needed by the Product Owner.