Business requirements – FREE plan
It all starts with business requirements. But there should be better way than dumping them into a spreadsheet or a monster textual document. Requirements need to be managed, prioritized, actioned and tracked. They need supporting information. They need collaboration.
You get all of this in Elements – for free
- You raise and manage requirements in the context of a Team Space*. (not Personal Space)
- anyone can Raise a requirement and then Submit it
- a requirement has a number of standard fields, but can also can have notes, links and tags
- anyone can comment / collaborate on a requirement, and comment threads can be resolved
- only Business Requirements Managers can manage the status/lifecycle of a Submitted requirement
*If you haven’t worked with Team Spaces or don’t have one yet – click here , there’s even a short video to introduce you to Spaces.
Requirements linked to Activities
You can link existing requirements to activities within diagrams. You can “Copy link” in Requirements attachments panel, and “paste link” onto any process activity to relate many requirements to many activities. This allows you to get up to date insights from reporting on requirements in the context of activities and processes – and vice versa. You can raise requirements from the right-click menu on process activities – just like adding an attachment.
Create and manage User stories directly from Requirements
You can create and manage multiple User Stories in the context of any given requirement (see the link for details). We are also building integrations for those of you who use Dev tools (like Agile Accelerator, Jira etc), to sync User Stories captured in Elements into these tools. Clearly you can already link URLs from requirements and User Stories to the same user story within those tools, but a full integration is the intention. The goal? To create and maintain line of sight from Requirement to Release. If you have questions or want to be involved in discussing how this will work for you, please contact us directly – firstname.lastname@example.org
When you are in the appropriate Team Space, Click on “Requirements” in the left panel to access the Business Requirements app.
Raising & submitting a requirement
Anyone can Raise a requirement. They can add information (notes, URL links, tags). You can structure the ‘Details’ entry as user stories to get people in the right mindset from the start, or leave them freeform as you wish. When ready, hit Create.
When they are ready they Submit by clicking on the “Change status” button in the right panel.
Filtering and ordering requirements
The list of requirements can be sorted by click on the top of the column name (Summary, ID, status, priority) or can be filtered on using the filters in the top bar – text in a Summary, status, priority, date range and tags.
NOTE: if you want to list and filter on the statuses of closed requirements (i.e. – Implemented, Deleted, Duplicated or Will not Implement’), they are under the CLOSED tab. If you run a report on the ACTIVE/CLOSED tab, the results only reflect the open or closed requirements – not both in the same list. Both
Editing requirements and changing the status
Any user who submits a business requirement can edit it before they Submit it. Once it has gone from Being Raised to Submitted, only a Business Requirements Manager can edit it and manage it through the lifecycle.
Making user a Business Requirements Manager
Adding users to a Space and setting user permissions is edited in the Space Management app. To open up the app click on the Space name in the top bar.
Click on the Users in the left menu
Linking a Requirement to an Activity on a Diagram
You can link existing requirements to activities within diagrams. You can click on “Copy link” [see below in Requirements ATTACHMENTS panel], and “paste link” onto any process activity to relate many requirements to many activities. This allows you to get up to date insights from reporting on requirements in the context of activities and processes – and vice versa. You can raise requirements from the right-click menu on activities – just like adding an attachment.
Having clicked on ‘Copy Link’, the information is held in the paste buffer. On a Diagram in edit mode, you then right click on the activity you want to link the Requirement to and select ‘Add attachment’, ‘Requirement’
…which then opens a Dialog to enable you to add a link description and edit the link title in relation to this specific link – neither of which impact the underlying Requirement information.
Once you click on ‘ATTACH’, you have setup the link. If you want to create the same link to other activities, the link stays in the paste buffer until you copy another link, so you can go to multiple activities on multiple diagrams and attach the link to the same requirement without having to ‘recopy’ the link.
Be aware that the link details are taken at the time of the ‘Copy Link’ action. This means if you update the requirement details in the meantime and then copy the link, the info in the ‘Link Details’ dialogue is not current. You can still connect, edit link details, update and work without issues. When you refresh the browser and open the link, the up to date details will all be there.
Seeing where this Requirement is linked
If you select a Requirement on the “Requirements” page, click on ATTACHMENTS in the right panel. You will see any Attachments and ‘Activity-Requirements links’ listed. Be aware that if this page was open while you were attaching links, as it is a different Tab to the Diagrams, you may need to refresh the browser to see the latest links.
Reporting on Requirements across scope of Diagrams
You can run a report from the Requirements page list view (see below), by clicking on ‘NEW REPORT’ at the top. This creates a requirements specific report showing only the requirements links.
You can also run a report of all types of links (including requirements), across a scope of diagrams by clicking on the Reporting icon (on a Diagram) – and selecting “Activity attachments and links” as the type, and optionally check the box to include lower levels. If you then select the report, filter it on “Attachment type” and select “Contains requirement” – you can see all the requirement links in context of the processes.
In both types of report results (notifications – bell icon top right) – you can filter on Requirements and/or export to excel format as appropriate.
Benefit of running inside Elements rather than exporting is you can use as a working list, update as you go, use the list to navigate the maps and maintain current information with no re-keying or duplication of effort.
Extending the fields in Requirements
You can attach a data table to a requirement to extend the fields FOR THAT INDIVIDUAL REQUIREMENT. If you want to extend to all requirements, you either need to attach the same data table to every requirement and add a record, or coming soon, the PRO capability will allow you to extend the fields for all requirements in a space.
Here is an example of a requirement with a data table attached to add some useful fields that a Salesforce Partner routinely captures in the context of their requirements gathering spreadsheets
If you have extended your requirements using Data Tables, you can run a report including the Data table fields by selecting that type of report after clicking on NEW REPORT. If you want to understand how to extend your requirements with data tables, please engage with us and let us help you develop your extended requirements. This is still free, but we want to help you do this in the most appropriate way to get more value. simply click on the chat icon in Elements and ask us to help and we will arrange to jump on a web session with you.
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