Requirements prioritization

The prioritize requirements task is used to rank requirements in the order of their importance.

The requirements have to be ranked to determine their importance to the stakeholders. Ranking can be based on the relative value of the requirement or the sequence in which they would be implemented.

Prioritization is an ongoing process which goes on throughout the life cycle of the solution.

There are some elements that can help with requirements prioritization and they are:

1. Basis for prioritization: the stakeholders decide on the basis for requirements prioritization in the business analysis planning and monitoring knowledge area.

Some factors which are used as the basis for prioritization include:

a. Benefit: this is the specific functionality, quality, goal or business objective which would accrue if the requirement is fulfilled.

b. Penalty: this is the consequence of not fulfilling the requirement. This includes not meeting regulatory obligations and policy demands.

c. Cost: these are the resources and effort required to implement the requirements.

d. Risk: this is the chance that the requirement cannot be fulfilled. Factors that can increase the risk of a requirement include the difficulty in implementation and stakeholder acceptance.

Difficult requirements might be prioritized and implemented first to ensure they can be fulfilled to prevent wasting resources further down the project.

e. Dependencies: these are relationships between requirements where one requirement cannot be implemented without the other. These requirements might have to be implemented together to make the process more efficient.

f. Time sensitivity: some requirements have to be implemented by a certain date to attain their value. Reasons why a requirement might be time sensitive include time-to-market solutions and regulatory obligations.

g. Stability: this is the possibility of the requirement changing during the life cycle of the solution. Less stable requirements might have a lower priority than a more stable requirement.

h. Regulatory or policy compliance: some requirements might have to be implemented in a certain order to meet with the regulatory obligations of the organization.

2. Challenges of prioritization: it might be difficult to have a consensus on the requirements prioritization due to the number of stakeholders involved in the solution.

Compromises would have to be made by the stakeholders in the requirements prioritization activity.

3. Continual prioritization: as the solution evolves the prioritization of the requirements might change.

This may be due to increased information, perceived benefits of requirements implementation and cost considerations.