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New Post 2/8/2012 5:49 AM
User is offline Sandy
70 posts
8th Level Poster

Re: Wikipedia needs your help 

Hey Kimbo,

Great feedback and great comments!  BABOK uses 'solution requirements' to refer to both functional & non-functional requirements.  I agree that this probably is not the best term, considering how the word 'solution' is used & mis-used...  BABOK also notes that the word 'solution' in the guide is meant to refer to either a business or technical solution - but that is probably not the first way that most people would interpret the word.  So perhaps a better wording is in order.

Thanks for the commnets on business architecture (and I have read books since I do work in this area as well - but am always interested in recommended reading from other people, if there are any books that you've found to be particularly useful).  Perhaps I should have said that the enterprise architecture cannot be "fully" represented - as you noted, "process forms part of" the model, and information flows are only part as well.  There are, as you know, many other business needs besides process and information that have to be represented.  So thanks for keeping me straight!

Lastly - I would particularly recommend reading the BABOK if it might make you angry!  Not that I want an angry Kimbo on the forum, but our practices only get better if we constantly question and re-evaluate them.  If everyone reads the BABOK and simply agrees with it, then we lose the opportunity to continue moving forward.  If you do start reading, I'd definitely likie to hear your thoughts.


New Post 2/8/2012 6:38 AM
User is offline Jarett Hailes
155 posts
6th Level Poster

Re: Wikipedia needs your help 

 Hi Kimbo,

As Sandy indicated, the BABOK uses solution requirements as a generic term:

"Solution Requirements▶▶ describe the characteristics of a solution that meet business requirements and stakeholder requirements. They are developed and defined through requirements analysis. They are frequently divided into sub-categories, particularly when the requirements describe a software solution:

Functional Requirements▷▷ describe the behavior and information that the solution will manage. They describe capabilities the system will be able to perform in terms of behaviors or operations—specific information technology application actions or responses.

Non-functional Requirements▷▷ capture conditions that do not directly relate to the behavior or functionality of the solution, but rather describe environmental conditions under which the solution must remain effective or qualities that the systems must have. They are also known as quality or supplementary requirements. These can include requirements related to capacity, speed, security, availability and the information architecture and presentation of the user interface."

I think the term 'solution requirements' is appropriate, and haven't really run into too many issues when using it once my stakeholders understand what it means (although I haven't worked exclusively in an IT department for several years now; most of my work is for the business and only involves IT solutions on occasion).

As we've all noted Business Anaysis as a profession is still young, so Kimbo I think it would be great for you to read the BABOK and give feedback to the IIBA on its content. I am in a discussion group of BAs, executives, unit managers, and consulting business development managers that are reviewing the BABOK chapter by chapter bi-weekly. We've come up with areas that we think are well defined and areas where there could be improvement. It's helped everyone involved get a better handle on what is expected of BAs and how to develop better BA practices within our respective organizations. The disagreements over content in the BABOK have led to great discussions around what the central purpose of a BA is/could/should be and how to best go about doing the work that needs to be done.

New Post 2/9/2012 2:44 AM
User is offline Kimbo
367 posts
5th Level Poster

Re: Wikipedia needs your help 

 Sandy, Chris, Jarett, Tony,

Looks like I've painted myself into a corner. Can't criticise what I haven't read.

Thursday night here and I've just knocked off for the weekend (4 day weeks nowadays). Having a beer and contemplating a swim down the beach tomorrow. Hard to find the time for BABOKs when there are important things like Beaches and Beer to consider :)

Did Craig get an answer to his original question about wikipedia?


New Post 2/9/2012 5:40 AM
User is offline Sandy
70 posts
8th Level Poster

Re: Wikipedia needs your help 

Kimbo - have one for me!  My beach is made of grass and right now is covered in snow, so I guess I still have time for reading...

My recommendation to Craig (as per my post on page 3 of this discussion) is to align Wikipedia with the BABOK definitions.  As Jarett and Chris have noted, a considerable amount of expertise has gone into the BABOK.  As individuals, we can disagree with any or all content but that is a debate for another day and perhaps many more forum discussions :).  But as a profession, I expect that we would publish to the world (via Wikipedia) what we publish to ourselves.

Given that the Wikipedia audience cannot be expected to have any BA background (and given that even BA's have different interpretations of the BABOK terms), there should probably be additional explanations and examples to clarify.  Chris gave a link with a nice posting that adds to the BABOK definitions. 


New Post 2/9/2012 5:49 AM
User is offline Tony Markos
493 posts
5th Level Poster

Re: Wikipedia needs your help 


Per Jarett:

The BABOK uses solution requirements as a generic term:


"Solution Requirements▶▶ describe the characteristics of a solution that meet business requirements and stakeholder requirements. They are developed and defined through requirements analysis."

As Robin (Batman's partner) would say:  "Hollly forced, artificial partitioning Batman!!"

Putting non-functional requirements to the side, higher level behavioral behavoral requirements (goals) and meet through lower level behavioral requirements, often of people (stakeholders), and the behavioral requirements of people are assisted via behavioral requirements embedded in an automation (a solution).  As the Data Flow Diagramming technique clearly indicate, that is no reaason to come up with different names for each of these.

In fact, the dysfunctionallity of forced, artificial partitioning is made glaringly evident in larger scale business analysis efforts, where the need to see the essentials -seamlessly across differnet  levesl of abstraction and implementation mechanisms - is of achievement is paramount.



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