There are many ways to benefit from the requirements process. Bottom line, requirements set expectations. Without expectations, you cannot manage a web development project efficiently and productively.
The Project Management section of this site discussed how your costs, schedule, and resources are impacted by your requirements. If you don’t have a handle on your requirements, you can spend a lot of time and money building and rebuilding your website thus impacting your schedule, costs, and resources. In short, requirements tell your staff and/or contractors what to do.
The analyses performed during the requirements phase provides information that is used in the design and development phases. When you have completed the requirements process, you should have enough information to make decisions about the design of your site and how to it. For example, you should be able to do the following (in no particular order):
- Choose the appropriate CMS features
- Define a taxonomy
- Identify if free tagging should be used
- Identify types of content and their data fields
- Structure the site and screen layout
- Design menus
- Identify which database queries are needed and why
- Define user roles
- Configure permissions
- Implement site workflow
- Create interactions
- Identify and design blocks of content
- Develop custom modules (if applicable)
In order to make these types of decisions, you need to approach your requirements from different angles, different perspectives to ensure you draw a complete picture.