Mastering Requirements Versioning: Best Practices and Tips

by | Mar 9, 2023

Changes in requirements during a software development lifecycle are part of the project development process. These changes can start as early as the moment they are elicited, to after the product has been released. During a project, requirements modifications are unavoidable. The good news is that Xebrio has been built to handle this use scenario. But first, let us understand what versioning is, why it is important, and the best practices to manage it.

What is versioning in requirements management?

When a change is proposed to the requirements, it is important to manage the change in a systematic way to ensure that the impact of the change is fully understood and that the change is properly documented and tracked. This is where requirements versioning comes in. By versioning requirements, you can keep track of changes made to requirements over time and ensure that all stakeholders are aware of the latest changes.
Requirements versioning also helps to ensure that changes are made in a controlled and well-documented manner. By tracking the different versions of requirements, you can see when changes were made, who made them, and why they were made. This information can be used to evaluate the impact of the changes and to assess the risks associated with implementing them.

Why is versioning important?

  1. Tracking Changes: Versioning allows you to keep track of changes made to requirements over time. This is important because requirements may change due to various reasons such as feedback from stakeholders, new information about the project, or changes in business or technical requirements.
  2. Collaboration: Versioning helps facilitate collaboration between team members, especially in larger software development projects where there are many people working on the same set of requirements. With versioning, multiple team members can work on different versions of the requirements simultaneously and collaborate effectively.
  3. Risk Management: Versioning helps mitigate the risk associated with changes to requirements. By tracking changes over time, you can assess the impact of changes and evaluate the risks associated with implementing them. This helps ensure that changes are made in a controlled and well-documented manner.
  4. Documentation: Versioning also provides a complete and auditable history of changes to the requirements, which can be important for compliance purposes or if legal or regulatory issues arise.

What are the best practices one should follow with requirements versioning?

  1. Use a clear and consistent version numbering system
  2. Establish clear version control procedures
  3. Keep detailed records of the changes
  4. Involve stakeholders in the versioning process
  5. Test and validate changes
  6. Use a requirements management tool, like Xebrio

With Xebrio’s versioning feature, you can:

  1. Maintain a historical record of past versions.
  2. Derive new versions of the same requirements.
  3. Manage changes as the project progresses.
  4. Keep everyone involved on the same page.

Xebrio lets you control and manage the changes that occur in your project and catalog those changes systematically.

Here are the steps to manage changes in Xebrio:

Step 1: Write the requirements and send them for a review to the reviewer.

Step 2: If the reviewer suggests changes, incorporate them.

Step 3: After the changes have been incorporated in the requirement, send for a review, and approved, mark the requirement as final.

Step 4: Click on the ‘Derive a new version’ and derive a new version of the requirement.

Step 5: You can check different versions of the requirement in the version changes tab.

Final thoughts
Versioning is an important part of requirements management because it helps to track changes, facilitate collaboration, mitigate risk, and provide a complete and auditable history of changes.

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