In this week's Monday Morning Mobile Minute, Justin discusses how rarely requirements are actually requirements and how even the word "requirements" negatively affects the discovery process. Take a step back from what users think they need to understand what the business challenges truly are before deciding which capabilities you need to achieve the best outcomes.
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Very rarely is a requirement actually a requirement. At Venado, we spend a lot of our time talking with businesses and technical leaders about creating or upgrading technology solutions for firstline workers. Many times our clients have done some amount of discovery, or "requirements" gathering already. I used air quotes on "requirements" because that word itself can cause issues in the discovery process. Let me give you an example. If I said, "Sure, that capability can be provided or that requirement can be fulfilled, but it's going to take three years and cost a billion dollars." You would probably say, "Well, it's not that important." So that means it's not really a requirement and that makes perfect sense.
What we're essentially saying is there is some value associated with that capability and there's a point at which the cost and the time to make it a reality makes sense. There's also a point at which it no longer seems worth the investment. So, this sounds basic and obvious when I lay it out with an extreme example, but everyday we witness situations where capabilities have been added to projects that don't necessarily make sense. Let's face it, the project teams that are doing this work are made up of people, and those people have opinions based on their experience, their personal history with the business problem, and their perception of how to make it better. It's imperative that we collect that feedback, including those somewhat biased perceptions, but we have to turn those ideas into something more measurable. We have to connect those ideas back to the business outcomes we're looking to achieve. So, this is why when we're approached with an existing set of requirements we always ask to take a couple of steps back to understand what the business challenges are, why they're even worth solving, and how we'll be able to measure success. Once we note that side of the equation, then we can work with a list of requested capabilities and map them to the outcomes.
This process results in a prioritized road map where we focus on building capabilities that achieve the best outcomes first. So, this represents the first couple of steps in our overall innovation process at Venado. For more information or to review other steps in the process, stop by our website. Of course you can always reach out to me directly if you have any questions at all. Thanks again for watching and have a great week.
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