Effective Functional and Cross-Functional Requirements in Agile Projects
In this article, I describe the approach we take to write effective functional and cross-functional requirements. We initially ran into problems with delivering software that did not completely resolve market and user needs. To improve our practice, we increased our cross-functional team collaboration and enhanced our requirements management process in our agile projects.
My team is building cloud-based software products for large- and mid-sized companies using agile. This article is about the approach we take to write effective functional and cross-functional requirements. Functional requirements specify business and user needs. Whereas, cross-functional requirements (sometimes referred to as non-functional requirements) specify operations of a system, rather than specific behavior. We initially ran into problems with delivering software that did not completely resolve market and user needs. Following are some of the root causes we identified for the challenges we faced:
- We made assumptions about user needs rather than interacting with them to understand their needs. Product managers were busy thinking about requirements instead of going out to meet users and learn their real needs and problems.
- We had unnecessarily restrictive constraints that resulted in features that were not easy to use. We made feature assumptions based on feedback from
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