Contract Management and Commercials in the Public Sector: 1 of 3

Requirements Gathering

Requirements gathering. Tell me more. Said no one ever.

But keep reading … let me tell you why it’s interesting. From our many years of experience, developing robust requirements will significantly reduce your procurement and implementation time, cost and risk. And it can facilitate your organisation proactively managing suppliers throughout the life of a contract.

Introduction

If you gather requirements effectively, it will allow you to do the following:

  • Manage Technology suppliers – as there is no ambiguity about what they need to deliver
  • Avoid lengthy and costly Change Requests
  • Remove Risk from Pricing

In addition, including staff from impacted services areas from the start through the co-design approach will help to achieve buy-in and ownership from the service areas as they are involved from the start of the change. It will also importantly help to set expectations across the organisation about what the solution will, and will not, achieve.

Approach

Our approach to developing Business Requirements:

  • Involves the services areas
  • Ensures requirements are pitched at the right level to deliver the best commercial value from technology suppliers (i.e. we ensure requirements are not too high-level while not delving into detailed design thereby limiting the subsequent implementation)
  • Provides focus. We have considerable experience of Contact Centres, Environment Services, Customer Portals, Corporate Services, Social Care and back-office integrations. We know the right questions to ask to ensure the rapid development of robust requirements

The steps we follow are as follows:

This article addresses the first four steps of the process, which are solely undertaken within the organisation to get a clear picture of the desired outcome for the final design of the solution.

Key Steps

The first vital step is to agree the Design Principles. These principles outline the vision for change at a strategic level and, once agreed, provide the foundation upon which work is undertaken. They also provide the mandate for change throughout the project.

We then run a series of interactive co-design workshops with the teams affected, which includes all impacted related services. We define the core target business processes and then develop a set of detailed requirements for each part of the core process. This approach helps to ensure the workshops are focussed on the critical components of the business process.

In line with our best practice, once we have defined the requirements, we run a Must, Should, Could, Won’t (MoSCoW) workshop with an agreed subset of people from the original workshops to validate and prioritise the Requirements Schedule. The MoSCoW analysis prioritises all requirements against business need and impact, and ensures that improvements and benefits are achieved.

Next Week

In our second piece, we will focus on engaging with potential suppliers, supporting the procurement and most importantly translating the business (and system) requirements into a contract schedule that clearly identifies the obligations of both the supplier and the client, through both the implementation and into the business as usual environment.

For more: 

If you would like to discuss our approach to Requirements Gathering, are currently considering going to market for a procurement or are interested in attending our upcoming workshop (Thursday, July 6th) you can contact us here or call 0207 9283127 and ask for Bal. 

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