What Is a Requirement Management Plan? (How to Create One)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published June 2, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

A requirement management plan is a crucial document within a project plan that keeps track of stakeholder requirements. This document helps ensure a team can meet its goals smoothly and efficiently. You can benefit from learning more about effectively using requirement management plans if you're a project manager or are taking part in planning a project. In this article, we discuss what a requirement management plan is and why companies use this tool, review its components, learn how to create one, and highlight three tips for creating it.

What is a requirement management plan?

A requirement management plan is a document that project managers create as part of the project plan. This plan's primary purpose is to trace and oversee stakeholder requirements, which are the needs and wants of people who invest in an organization. Stakeholder requirements may relate to operations teams, communities, and business units. Requirement plans typically include a requirement's name, description, and notes about fulfilling the requirement. Project managers usually meet with stakeholders to learn about their project requirements.

Using an organized requirement plan can help you keep track of your stakeholder requirements. It can also help you outline how to manage these requirements for the duration of the project. The scope management process typically includes the requirements management plan and the primary project plan. A requirement management plan typically addresses:

  • How to identify stakeholder requirements

  • How to prioritize stakeholder requirements

  • How to create traceability

  • How to manage any requirement changes

  • How to find out who's responsible for related management

Related: A Guide to Different Requirements Documentation (With Types)

Why do companies use requirement management plans?

When a company effectively manages requirements, it can help project managers meet stakeholder expectations. Additionally, this can help them lead a successful project. Project teams may also benefit from having these plans by using them as a guide through various project phases.

Related: Developing Proficient Organizational Skills

Components of an effective requirements management plan

An effective requirement plan includes the following components:

  • Project overview: The project overview is a brief description of the project's purpose. For example, reducing production costs by 20% by increasing automation.

  • Requirements: These plans include a list of project requirements, including descriptions and notes. Include any details that help explain complex requirements and plans for fulfilling them.

  • Team member roles: Include the roles and responsibilities of project team members. For example, analyze the data weekly to ensure that the project remains on schedule.

  • Tools: Project managers typically list project tools in their plan, specifically tools that help manage requirements. For example, spreadsheet software or project management applications.

Related: What Is a Performance Improvement Plan? (With an Example)

How to create a requirements management plan

Learn how to create a requirements management plan by following these steps:

1. Pinpoint your project's stakeholders

Identify the key stakeholders for your project. These are the individuals who show an interest in your project or whom your project affects. They often include customers, employees, investors, and other individuals. Once you identify your stakeholders, prioritize them according to their level of involvement. This prioritization can help you determine which stakeholder requirements are the most critical to your project. For example, a manager may prioritize an investor subsidizing the project over a customer. They decide this because they consider the investor's funds crucial to the project.

Related: What Is a Project Management Plan? With Tips and Examples

2. Set goals

Next, set goals for the project and discuss them with the project team and stakeholders. Setting clear goals can also help you identify potential requirements. Ensure that your project goals align with the SMART goals framework. Following this framework means your goals are:

  • Specific: Use clear and direct language that people can't interpret in a way that differs from its meaning. For example, increasing the monthly production quantity of smartphones from 1,000 to 1,500 by the end of the year.

  • Measurable: Use precise figures to determine goals. For example, increasing 4- and 5-star customer feedback by 40%.

  • Achievable: Make sure that your team can achieve the goals you set. For example, signing up five new customers to a rewards program each day in December.

  • Relevant: Align with the company's mission and values. For example, requiring all team members to adhere to company policy while performing their tasks for the project.

  • Time-based: Set specific dates for achieving goals. For example, completing the project's first stage by November 19, 2024.

3. Meet with stakeholders

While you form your plan, meet with stakeholders to learn about their ideas and identify their requirements. During your meeting, take notes you can use later to develop the plan. Note what the most important requirement is so that it takes priority over others in your project.

4. Name each requirement

After meeting with stakeholders and setting goals, create a document for your requirement plan. Review any notes you wrote during the meeting to develop an outline. Begin by naming each requirement. For example, if you're making a mobile application for a local fitness centre chain, you may call one of the requirements a live chat feature. If your project contains multiple requirements, consider assigning a number to each one to stay organized.

5. Add requirement descriptions

Next, add descriptions to each requirement. This gives a reader more context, helping ensure they understand everything. For example, a description might say the live chat feature can connect users with personal trainers and dieticians in real-time. You can add further notes or comments to each requirement. For example, you might leave a note that says regulations require that all companies encrypt the live chat feature for patient confidentiality.

6. Categorize requirements

Once you've added requirement descriptions, you would then categorize them. When you place them into categories, it helps you identify which batches of requirements relate to each other. When this occurs, you may complete related requirements at the same time. For example, you may create a category called member communication. This category can include requirements like the live chat feature, appointment summaries, and message inbox.

7. Delegate tasks

Next, assign tasks to project team members by delegating them to the members who can best complete them. After assigning tasks, meet with the project team to review the plan before sharing it with stakeholders. This step allows you to answer team members' questions and get feedback.

Related: Essential Project Manager Technical Skills

8. Share your plan with stakeholders

After completing your requirements management plan, share it with your stakeholders. Consider hosting a meeting in which you review each requirement. Try to get feedback from stakeholders and answer their questions, helping you clarify the plan so you can make any necessary changes.

What is a stakeholder's role in requirements management?

A stakeholder's role in requirements management is to contribute to the list of requirements for the project. They review the plan that the project teams follow throughout the project. Project managers also work to meet stakeholder expectations, which affects whether a project is successful.

Tips for an effective requirements management plan

Here are three tips for creating and using an effective requirements management plan:

Get feedback from your team

One important tip for creating your plan is to get in-depth feedback from your project team members. You can host regular team meetings to ensure everyone understands the plan and how to meet the requirements. You can also ask your team to review your requirements management plan before presenting the final copy to your stakeholders. This step can help you ensure that everyone on the team commits to the plan and knows their role in fulfilling requirements.

Monitor your progress

Monitoring your progress is also essential to making your plan impactful. You can monitor progress by creating success metrics and periodically using these to measure the progress of your project. Monitoring your progress helps ensure your team adheres to project deadlines. You can also track your team's progress toward fulfilling each requirement. Consider weekly or monthly meetings with team members to discuss their progress and examine if they require additional support or resources to complete their tasks.

Use a template

You can also use a template to create your requirements plan. There are requirement plan templates available online that you can use to help you make your own. You can fill in the template or use it as a guide for creating your own. Using a template can help you ensure you include all the essential elements in your plan.

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