Information governance project don’t just happen. You cannot scan without a strategy or start a social media initiative without a vision. One of the key factors in implementing any facet of information governance is identifying requirements before starting. Part of my information management career has involved a stint as a requirements analyst, so my attention always perks when I find research on project management. Here are 10 ways from Blueprint that requirements can sabotage your project from the beginning.

1)Dramatic Project overruns stem from requirements

“One in six projects have budget overruns of up to 197%, and the the cost to fix requirements issues in production is 200 times that of fixing the issue in early parts of the life cycle.”

2)’Over-Build’ expands project scope unnecessarily, and can always be traced back to requirements.

Almost half of all delivered features are never used.

3)Approaching requirements in the same old way won’t work in agile environments

4)Continuing trends toward outsourced and physically dispersed team members strains the ability to produce quality requirements.

5)Effective collaboration is largely absent from the requirements process
6)Requirement suffer as it becomes harder to get people together

Points 5 and 6 are not saying everyone needs to be physically together to collaborate, but instead don’t settle for e-mail as a collaboration tool. To much rework is done to fix what is miscommunicated or not communicated. Take advanced of quickly evolving social technologies to foster better collaboration. This white paper reports, “45% of IT professional admit to being “fuzzy” about the details of a project’s business objectives.” If a requirement is not clear then what is the point of it?

7)Lack of executive involvement in the requirements stage often dooms a project to fail.

8)Requirements definition is text-based verse visual, which leaves too much room for misinterpretation.

A picture is worth a thousand words. When possible create a static web page mock-up or something else that gives an image instead of flat text that is left up to interpretation.

9)Excessive requirements changes are a major cause of project failure

10)Tools that enable compliance are largely missing from requirements efforts.

You can download your own copy of the white paper here.

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