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eXtreme Requirements Analysis in Systems Development

Student: Kristie Kosaka, Claremont Graduate University (CGU)


Co-Authors: Mark Bergman, Naval Postgraduate School and Gloria Mark, UCI/ISR


Abstract: Advancement in requirements analysis processes basically follows two interrelated steps: 1) utilizing and enhancing methods and tools and 2) improvement in understanding of requirements analysis practice. We examined how systems requirements analysis is performed. An Information Systems (IS) department of a large aerospace corporation was observed over a 4 month period. The group has reduced cost and job timelines as compared to similar internal corporate IS centers. We assert that the gains in requirements process productivity, which lowered job costs, are due to a reduction of sensemaking gaps between customers and developers during the systems analysis and design process. These sensemaking gaps were diminished through the employment of CMM Level 2 process maturity, eXtreme-requirements analysis (XRA) techniques, and fostering safe and trusted environment between the IS center, especially IS developers, and their customers. XRA promoted tight, real-time cooperation between customers and IS developers. These close working relationships, coupled with repeatedly successful job results, promoted an environment steeped in mutual trust and respect. In turn, this resulted in improved data integrity when determining and acting upon requirements. Hence, we posit that the requirements practice can be improved by reducing gaps in customer-developer sensemaking, while fostering long term mutual trust and respect.


Bio: Kristie Kosaka is a doctoral student in the School of Information Science at Claremont Graduate University. Her advisor is Samir Chatterjee. She has been employed as a project lead by an aerospace company for over 26 years. Kristie's research areas of interest include various aspects of software development, secure adhoc collaboration, and wireless sensor networks.