Although I prefer a solid requirements development and management process over having a really cool requirements tool, I have found that requirements development work on many projects is easier to complete and maintain if you use a tool. Make sure that your selected tool supports your organization’s process for developing and managing requirements. For an overview and evaluation of requirements management tools, check out the requirements tools survey data on the International Council on System Engineering (INCOSE) web site at: http://www.incose.org/ProductsPubs/products/rmsurvey.aspx.
Most requirements management tools use a database to store each requirement and any relevant data as a record. The tools organize and trace the requirements by:
These tools often integrate with other project tools, such as configuration management, testing, analysis, design, and modeling tools. Many current tools have limited requirements documentation, management, and linking capabilities and you will often see bundled or supplemental services in the tool suites. When you are selecting a requirements management tool, consider following my simple road map for the steps in tool evaluation and selection. And do keep in mind that one tool does not fit all needs.
When evaluating requirements tools, you should consider the following list of capabilities as part of your requirements management tool selection checklist:
Happy requirements tool shopping. Be sure to do your homework and assess the available tools relative to your organization and your types of projects. That is a common sense way to avoid tool buyer’s remorse.