A Basic Introduction to Creating a Software Requirements Specification

A Basic Introduction to Creating a Software Requirements Specification

Kamelia Stone is Content Manager at Marketbusinessnews. She likes to travel, meditate, and draw inspiration from different sources, primarily from books.

Software Requirements Specifications (SRSs) document describes the various software features, capabilities, coding tests, and functions that are to be implemented in the product.

These parameters also include characteristics, design details, and implementation obstacles for the development team. The structure of SRS can be modified, depending on the project, and various features/functions can be added during the process.

SRS lies in the initial, bottom stage of the entire development process. The next stages include user requirements, which detail the needs of end-users, and describing beyond the goal of the final product (business requirements).

No matter how the SRS structure is shifted during the development process, functional (if/then, data handling, etc.) and non-functional (usability, scalability, etc.) requirements always take place.

This post for Process Street will discuss:

Now let’s get straight to business.
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What is a Blog Maturity Model? How We Create Quality Content at Process Street

blog maturity model

When you’re doing any kind of content marketing, you want to be able to understand how well you’re doing. You want to be able to look at the performance of the content you’re creating and feel assurance that you’re:

  1. Driving forward key goals and objectives tied to your content strategy;
  2. Continuously optimizing and improving the quality of your content in order to hit those goals.

Especially when you’re creating this kind of content that involves a degree of creative input (writing!) it can be difficult to measure quality.

This is where maturity models come in. Maturity models can be a great way to build and assess how successful an organization or system is at achieving continuous improvement.

Ultimately, it’s the idea that you’re constantly seeking to test and improve the way in which your organization runs. You’re not standing still.

We’ve written before about more generally applicable Capability Maturity Models, but this post takes a look at our internal Blog Asset Maturity Model (BAMM) process that we use to audit and continuously improve the quality of our blog content.

In this Process Street article, we’ll cover:

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Default to Action & Overcome the Toolbox Fallacy

toolbox-fallacy

“A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan next week.” – George Patton

“Once I have X, I can do Y.”

This phrase is the defining characteristic of the toolbox fallacy: thinking you can’t do something until you have the right tool.

The toolbox fallacy is self-deception disguised as excuses or a lack of “tools”. The issue with these tools is that you believe that you need them and thus, can’t (or won’t) start a project without them.

“As soon as my Apple Watch arrives, I’ll start training for the 5K.”

The problem is when X arrives, do you crack on and get started with the Y? Often times, it’s too easy to continue down the slippery slope of toolbox logic.

“My Apple Watch arrived, but now I need a coaching app – which I am yet to have downloaded.”

So, how do you overcome the toolbox fallacy? Simple: You default to action. In other words, you get the ball rolling – whether you have all the tools you think you need or not.

The solution, in a sense, is to be more agile.

In this post I’ll be looking at how to overcome the toolbox fallacy by putting the systems in place to move fast, and with virtue. I’ll try to address:

  • How do you plan and structure clear action items, so you can move fast and be sure you’re making the right decisions?
  • How will you move fast without breaking things (by things I mean humans)?

And, to sum things up I’ll take a look at how we at Process Street use OKRs to decide when it is we should be moving fast vs when we should be slowing down.

To jump to a specific section click the appropriate links below:

Let’s start by unpacking the toolbox fallacy in more depth! 🛠
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Shape Up vs Scrum: 6 Months to 6 Weeks – How We Cut Our Dev Cycle 75%

shape up

From sprints to cycles, and from product backlogs to …well…no backlog at all. These are just a couple of examples of the differences between Shape Up and agile approaches such as Scrum.

But, what exactly is Shape Up? How does it, when put into practice, differ from Scrum?

Our development team here at Process Street recently made the move from Scrum to Shape Up and I asked them how the two compare. This post outlines the key takeaways from the team and takes a closer look at what Shape Up is as a whole.

To jump to a specific section, click the appropriate link below:

Alternatively, to read the whole post – just keep on scrolling. 🚀
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What is Scrumban? The Best Parts of Scrum and Kanban

scrumban
507 blog posts.

That’s how many items our team has created, edited, and published since implementing Scrumban.

Before we set up our system, we were mostly scrabbling to get items together from week-to-week, without knowing what we’d be working on next.

Now, we’re always 3 weeks ahead of our publishing calendar, have built our blog to over 130,000 subscribers, and have expanded our team by over 300%.

That’s why we here at Process Street will take you through this (practically new) method for managing your team and projects.

We’ll cover:

If you want a sneak preview of how we’ve deployed Scrumban, I’ll give you a hint. It’s got something to do with the Sprint Planning checklist below (which you can grab for free!)…

Let’s get started!
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Gemba Walk: How to Strive Forward by Taking a Step Back

Gemba Walk

You’ve heard of the moonwalk. But have you heard of the Gemba Walk?

From a business standpoint, the Gemba Walk is infinitely more useful (though the moonwalk is pretty cool).

Specifically, the Gemba Walk allows businesses to continuously improve how they do things by remedying their processes, procedures, and workflows for recurring tasks. The continual process improvements that Gemba Walking brings helps businesses exponentially – 1 in 4 improvements save time, and 1 in 10 improvements save money.

And this is all achieved by simply stepping back, rather than blindly pushing forward.

Want to know more?

I thought so.

In this post, I’ll tell you what Gemba Walk means, the origins of it, its benefits, and how Process Street can help both remote and physical businesses do the Gemba Walk.

Just read through the following sections to get clued up:

Now, let’s sprint through the rest of the post! 🏃‍♂️

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Kanban vs Scrum: Understanding the Tools for Agile Success

Kanban vs Scrum

You’ll often hear the question: “Which is better? Kanban or Scrum?” or variations of this eternal deathmatch between two of the most well-established agile methodologies.

People are wasting energy fighting over which methodology trumps another. If you’re an agile organization, you should be placing principle above practice.

It makes a lot of sense to ask questions like “why might I want to use Kanban over Scrum?”, or even “Kanban and Scrum” as opposed to “Kanban vs Scrum”. There are a lot of differences between the two, but fundamentally, they are both agile methodologies, and the principle behind why you might want to use both can be in alignment.

You may even find they can work well together, as part of a unified strategy referred to as Scrumban. You need to consider what approach will work best for your team.

My aim with this article is to approach the question of “Kanban vs Scrum” by clearly presenting both approaches in terms of when, how, and why you might choose to use either of them.

I’ll also talk about the capacity for overlapping Kanban and Scrum approaches, and how some additional tools like Process Street can factor into that equation.

Here’s a breakdown of how we’ll approach comparing “Kanban vs Scrum”:

Let’s start with a basic primer on what it means to be agile. Continue Reading

Secrets of the Cabal: Half-Life’s Organizational Management & Other Agile Tales

organizational management at valve corporation cabal process

From humble beginnings as a simple clone of the then-popular first-person shooter Quake, Half-Life would eventually become the first installment of one of the most successful video game series of all time.

Today, Valve Inc. is one of the most renowned, innovative, and successful game development companies worldwide, boasting one of the largest video game digital distribution service platforms on the planet, a range of pioneering virtual reality hardware and an impressive roster of instantly recognizable and widely-loved game titles.

Specifically, the development of the original Half-Life makes for an interesting case-study, and represents a model of innovative agile organizational management.

Half-Life is remembered as one of the best games of all time, and the intense environment in which it was created – where the Cabal process was born – is testament to that legacy.

Companies like Valve, Zappos, Semco, and even Google have come up with different models to enable the potential of their workers. These methods give power to the employees to pursue their own entrepreneurial pet projects.

Tesla’s innovation is equal part production process as it is the product; you need only look to the hulking Gigafactories to find evidence of this.

Similarly, Facebook’s success is not just in the service it offers users, but also how it was designed to scale to billions of users.

The process of organizational management is always an important factor in the outcome of these hugely successful products.

In this post I’ll be looking at democratic methods of organizational management, with a particular focus on Valve’s Cabal process. I’ll also mention a couple of other interesting examples of holocratic organizational management, and talk about our own internal structure at Process Street.

Here’s a quick breakdown of each section, if you want to jump ahead:

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What is Fake Agile? Understanding the Dark Side of Agile and How to Avoid It

fake agile

Agile is a buzzword. These days, everyone is “doing agile”. Or so they say.

Despite over 90% of senior executives stating agile adoption as a top priority, less than 10% actually consider their firm to be performing with a high level of agility.

As much as people love to wear the badge of agile on their sleeve, there is a great deal of confusion swelling in the dark chasm between the aspiration of agile implementation and reality.

So what is agile?

It’s basically a philosophy of software development that prioritizes iterative development of working software and solutions through cross-collaboration and self-organizing teams.

It’s also an umbrella term for a bunch of development frameworks, but agile doesn’t simply mean kanban or scrum.

Some of the confusion arises when teams equate the agile approach to using an “Agile framework” (usually capitalized).

Frameworks like these are attractive because they’re sold as simplified solutions to difficult project and process management problems.

Sure, these frameworks can be an important part of an agile implementation, but they need more. They need a firm foundation to stand upon.

It’s not enough to simply go through the motions and expect an agile approach to “just work”, especially when transitioning from a more rigid and traditional framework like waterfall.

In order to drive agile success, teams need to adopt agile philosophy. They need to change the way they think about work ownership, management, and their relationship and duty to customers.

Without this vital force, frameworks like scrum and kanban fall flat.

In this article I’ll investigate what it is that separates true agile from the “fake” agile that is often the differentiator between success and failure of a development team. Here’s a quick overview:

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Waterfall vs Agile: Which Methodology Is Right For You?

 The following is a guest post by Uwe Dreissigacker. Uwe is the Founder of online invoicing software InvoiceBerry. InvoiceBerry helps small business owners and freelancers to create professional looking invoices, get paid online and keep track of unpaid invoices. In his free time, Uwe travels a lot, explores new cultures and loves trying new spicy dishes.

agile vs waterfall

As a business, if you want your operation to run smoothly, managing productivity and your workflows is one of the best ways you can stay on track.

Before you even get started on a project, you should first take a step back and plan out your approach.

What methodology will you use? How will you manage productivity and stay on track? SCRUM? SWOT?

Decisions, decisions

The choices can be overwhelming. Not to mention, over the course of the actual project, you’ll have to make hundreds of other choices.

If you’re not sure where to begin, it’s best to think about your project as a whole and then select the right methodology you’ll follow – Waterfall or Agile?

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