When it comes to identifying the requirements with the team it is likely that a series of workshops will be required. Techniques such as Critical Process Mapping can be used to identify and document the workflow, processes, and requirements. There are several key areas to concentrate on during these workshops including:
- Bottle necks in the current workflow or process
- Contact points with customers (internal or external)
- Items that will add value or improve the process or workflow
- Manual touch points in the process or workflow that could be automated (or streamlined)
- Interaction between functions or systems
Of these the last can be one of the most important as they identify where ownership of the sample, process or information can change, and it is where issues often exist in current processes.
These workshop exercises are valuable because they identify issues such as:
- Is sample data going missing or difficult to find?
- Is manual paperwork taking too long?
- Do you rely on manual transcription or use of spreadsheets for intermediate calculations?
- Do you know where all samples are at any one time?
- Are management reports difficult to create?
This, combined with the knowledge of the process or workflow, provides the basis for a comprehensive set of requirements to be defined.