Analysing system requirements beyond the core features

Digital systems serve many purposes; to fulfil a need, to provide value for users, to make work and life easier for users, to provide outcomes or a service, to save time, etc.  When they serve you well, you keep them. When they do not serve you, you either put up with the frustrations of an inferior system or you shop around.

Digital systems rise and fall, they come and go. Remember Myspace? As unlikely as it seems now, a new social media platform will rise up and one day we will say “Remember Facebook?!”

There are many reasons to add and change and update systems:

– New functionality requirements
– Dissatisfaction with current systems
– Not understanding or under-utilising a system
– Outgrown features and capacity of a system
– New ways of doing things and user experience
– New technological developments and integrations
– Simplifying processes

When you undertake the process of digital transformation and system upgrades, you may be looking to change one single digital system or a complete overhaul as you take major steps in the growth of your organisation. Either way, there are three main stages in the process of successfully choosing and implementing a system; analysis, strategy and implementation.

In the analysis of a new system, we need to look at the current state of play and where the organisation wants to go.

The key things to focus on in analysis are:

  • Current systems
  • Organisation objectives
  • Team resources and strengths 
  • Future objectives
  • New system requirements
  • Factors and priorities for system selection

It is best to engage the key stakeholders, tech champions and core team members early on in the process, to gain their feedback and perspective on what has and has not worked well and their needs moving forward.

A comprehensive digital strategy will serve you well, regardless of whether you are changing one system or overhauling everything. Either way, you need to consider holistically how all your digital systems integrate and fit together, both technically and as part of the whole user experience.

Ultimately, the systems need to meet your core requirements and functionality, to serve the system users and stakeholders.

But there are many other softer factors and priorities to consider from the start. Here are a few to share and poll with your stakeholders:

Access

What access do you and your users require? 
Do you require desktop OS versions? 
Which devices and browsers does the system support?
Do you require native iOS or Android apps?

Cost

Is your organisation concerned about saving money?
Does your organisation have a budget for the system?

N

Effectiveness

For current systems, how effective are they?

Familiarity

Do you or someone in your team have experience already with this system?

Features

Does the system have all the features you require?
Does the system have additional features for growth in the future?
Does the system integrate well with other systems you use?

A

Flow

Is your organisation concerned about saving time?
Is the system fast?
Does it have strong user experience and solid workflows?

Learnability

Is the system easy to learn?
Does your team natively pick up on new technology?
Who are the tech champions in your organisation who can support other users?

Popularity

Is the system widely used?
Is the system well regarded in your industry?
Is the system declining due to newer products on the market?

w

Recommendations

Has the system been recommended to you?
Have you heard concerns about the system?

Stability

What is the maturity of the system?
Has the system been around for years?
Is it reliable & secure?
Does it have high uptime?

Support

Do you require fast support?
Do you require local-based support?
Does the system have solid documentation? Online forum?

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Urgency

Do you need to make a quick decision on implementing a new system?
Who are the most important people in making this decision?

Capturing these additional factors and priorities early on in the analysis process can make the difference between choosing a great system and getting stuck a few weeks or months in with a system that does not suit the needs of everyone on your team.

If you want to learn more about analysing your current systems or designing your organisation’s digital strategy, Digital Team Coach can help you with your digital transformation. Join a digital strategy training session or speak with Evan for more details.

 

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