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Requirements Engineering for Web Applications
Wednesday, 23 December 2009 18:26
A web application requires a team of people steered by common strategies and goals using a set of tools to generate design and code. However before beginning the development of the application, it is important to do requirements engineering. It is an important step in the development of a web application because the end result is entirely dependent upon the way the requirements are defined.

 

Analysis Phase

The requirements of the system are defined in this phase, though it doesn’t specify how they will be accomplished. It deals with ‘what’, rather than ‘how’ of the system. The output of this phase is the requirements document. This document forms the foundation for building the project. The requirements document should be written in such a form that it is easy to decompose into algorithms and data structures.

Design Phase

The analysis phase outputs the requirements document which is used to produce the basic structure of the web application. In other words, it works on the architecture of the application. This phase deals with the ‘how’ of the system. Details on platforms, programming language, memory size, application architecture, algorithms, data structures, interfaces, and a number of other details are ascertained.

Business Requirements Gathering

This is a significant element of the requirements engineering phase. The main part of this element is gathering of data and process requirements.

It includes the following:

  • Interviewing subject experts
  • Systematizing intricate information into comprehensible subject areas
  • Translating business language into technical language and vice versa
  • Guaranteeing stakeholder participation at all levels
  • Outlining concise and clear documentation for technicians and users.
  • Working productively with multidisciplinary groups.

User requirements and user interviews

To develop a high quality user-oriented web application, it is necessary to determine user requirements, to understand what users expect from the system, and the services they are anticipating. It is imperative to interview the users so that they can participate in the development of the web application, and with the help of user interviews, the application will be more successful as the developers will have a clearer understanding of the user’s prospects.

Making use of prototyping

Prototyping helps the analysis team to understand the system’s requirements in a better way, as a throwaway model is built and given to the users for experimentation. They would then give their feedback on the prototype, and the analysts would gain a better knowledge of their requirements. The contractor and the client can more easily understand each other’s point of view with the help of a prototype.

Wireframes

These are line drawings that are used to demonstrate the position of various components on a web page. It is better that you start with a wireframe, as it will be more convenient to make changes to a wireframe rather than changing a complicated design later on, if the user does not agree with it. It also helps the client to focus on the basic layout of the website, rather than getting distracted by the color or any other design elements.

UI Design

User interface design is very important, as this is the place where the users will connect to the system, and so this part should be as user-friendly, and as simple as possible. Also make sure that your users can find the required information easily on your website. The right information architecture ensures that users can navigate your website with ease.

It is important to go through the requirements engineering phase when developing a web application. Proper requirements engineering is critical for your project to succeed and results in significant savings in both development time and budget.

Websoft provides Business Analyst consultants to assist with your requirement gathering and documentation needs, contact us for more information.


Websoft Written on Wednesday, 23 December 2009 18:26 by Websoft

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