Elicit Requirements for Multiple Departments

Type of Service: 
Management Consulting
Country: 
Saudi Arabia
Industry: 
Health Care Services
Duration: 
3 months
Challenge: 

To gather and analyze the business requirements for 8 different departments within the client, a large healthcare organization, and to deliver a high-level plan for the solution. The requirements were to be rolled up into a single document and serve as the basis for a request for proposal.

The departments had been waiting for a significant period of time to begin an automation effort. The delay was due to many reasons, including lack of IT personnel, rapid staff turnover, and unstable requirements. Part of the challenge was to overcome the lingering issues of the past, and begin to work with the different departments to understand and document their requirements. Another part of the challenge was to realistically consider the department's needs against the existing and planned technology for the client overall. Given that the client actually had over a hundred other departments, designing an efficient solution would not be easy.

Solution: 

Systematic Computer Science conducted a careful but positive round of meetings wherein we elicited the requirements of the different departments by interviewing the key end-users. Prior to the meetings, we asked the users to "do their homework" and prepare initial drafts of their requirements, something which we aided by providing them with templates and samples for capturing their needs. During the meetings, we would go through their documents and clarify open issues. After the meetings, a draft of the departments' processes was prepared that described each process in reasonable detail:

  • objective of the process
  • stakeholders
  • preconditions and postconditions
  • the steps of the typical process
  • the steps of exceptional and alternative scenarios
  • high-level descriptions of the data flowing between steps

After preparing the process documentation, Systematic Computer Science prepared and delivered a project plan addressing all of the department's processes. An estimate of the required resources and schedule was included, as well as a preliminary listing of the recommended technologies. Great care was given to suggest technologies that would be a win for the client's other departments as well.

Benefits: 

The greatest benefit of this engagement was that the client's eight business departments finally made progress with the IT department to formally capture and analyze their requirements. A great deal of past issues were cleared up and resolved, and the two sides were able to work together efficiently to prepare a realistic plan that met the department's needs.

The benefit to the client did not stop at the immediate project however. The requirements document prepared by Systematic Computer Science was appreciated enough to become a model template in and of itself for future requirements gathering sessions.