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This chapter is from the book

Reviewing the Specification

The Quality Gateway exists to keep bad requirements out of the specification. But it does this one requirement at a time. When you think your requirements specification is complete, you should review it. This final review checks that there are no missing requirements, that all the requirements are consistent with one another, and that any conflicts between the requirements have been resolved. In short, the review confirms that the specification is really complete and suitable so that you can move on to the next stage of development.

This review also offers you an opportunity to reassess the costs and risks of the project. Now that you have a complete specification, you know a lot more about the product than you did at blastoff time. Once the requirements specification is complete, you have a precise knowledge of the scope and functionality of the product, so this is the time to remeasure its size. From that size, and from your knowledge of the project's constraints and solution architecture, you can estimate the cost to construct the product.

You also know at this stage which types of requirements are associated with the greatest risks. For example, the users may have asked for an interface that their organization has not built before. Or perhaps they want to use untried technology to build the product. Does the developer have the people capable of building the product as specified? By reassessing the risks at this point, you give yourself a better chance to build the desired product successfully.

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