Traceability as a phrase is used across many industries for example, within Supply Chain Management where transparency on processes, and ability of accurate tracking of changes is essential. In the software development lifecycle (SDLC) traceability primarily means the traceability of requirements throughout application development, ensuring that the delivered software fulfills all requirements and therefore prevent failures. Of course software always contains bugs that needs to be fixed, but traceability helps to minimize failures and helps to deliver the right software on schedule that meets business requirements. Requirements traceability is critically important element within the application development lifecycle assuring successful product development if used to best effect.
Traceability of requirements provides benefits in two main areas:
- Providing context for the implementation and specification to the development team, it also defines the expectation of the testing team
- Ensures the team are not just building the product right, but also building the right product.
The impact of advanced requirements traceability increases team motivation, by providing the feeling that each team member is doing the right things, in addition it effects customer satisfaction providing the right product, they expect.
Traceability in SDLC context means the ability to monitor and control:
- All requirements are defined
- Accepted requirements are broken down into development and test tasks that refer to each other
- During development, source code is reviewed according to acceptance criteria
- Changes at any time during the development lifecycle are traced, collaboration is ensured,
- Test performed and released for deployment on-time.
How does business benefit from implementing a traceability solution?
- All goals are traced along the completeness of requirements
- Change management ensures easier impact analysis, and improved risk management
- Helps to avoid quality and acceptance problems
- Enables further improvement of the product and maintenance
- Save time/money and effort – product fits to business needs
- Reduced waste time due to less failures with a decreased chance of project overrun
- Ensure compliance with industry standards (CMMI, ISO 900X)
- Provides a quicker impact analysis for risk time and cost deviations
codeBeamer ALM supports the implementation of best practices for a software development traceability solution. For yet more information, check out our video about codeBeamer’s Traceability functions.