System selection at SCHMELING+CONSULTANTS
30% time savings
Since 2007, the employees of SCHMELING + CONSULTANTS have been advising their customers in the field of information management and information quality in technical communication and documentation.
They support their customers, among other things, in the selection of information management systems, such as PIM and CCMS, and with advice on legal compliance and standards. Extensive customer requirements are always recorded and passed on to potential system providers, or requirements are derived from longer standard texts in order to support customers in generating standard-compliant documents. To be able to work efficiently in future customer projects, the requirements are also processed and managed internally for the purpose of reuse.
Both the internal and external documentation of requirements for customers and system vendors was mostly done in Excel spreadsheets or long Word lists. However, in this document-based RM approach, requirements maintenance was usually a time-consuming and inefficient process.
Since there were often several active working documents for a project, these had to be laboriously consolidated at regular intervals in order to avoid inconsistencies between requirements.
Similarly, transferring requirements from customer documents to internal management structures was highly inefficient.
In addition, fine-grained versioning at the requirements level was not possible because the entire document was changed each time a single requirement was processed. Thus, a quick overview of changes and comments was not available.
The lack of a central repository in the form of professional requirements management software accordingly led to a significant amount of avoidable additional work.
In order to simplify their handling of the large amount of requirements (regularly in the 3-digit range per project) and to make it more efficient, SCHMELING + CONSULTANTS intended to use a professional requirements management tool.
When selecting the software, it was essential for SCHMELING + CONSULTANTS that the tool had a particularly high degree of flexibility in terms of configuration options.
Thus, it was important to the consultants of SCHMELING+CONSULTANTS to be able to independently model a wide variety of data models in order to be able to use the software for as many project types as possible.
The requirements management software ReqSuite® RM from OSSENO Software quickly proved to be a suitable candidate to significantly improve SCHMELING + CONSULTANTS’ requirements management due to its high functional scope and 100% customizability.
In the course of a few workshops lasting a couple of hours, which were conducted by OSSENO consultants, the process-related requirements of SCHMELING + CONSULTANTS were first determined in order to be able to set up the software individually for the company.
At the same time, the participants were introduced to the use of the tool.
Based on the functional possibilities of ReqSuite® RM, new data and process models were developed together. Based on these, customer requirements and normative requirements were to be documented, processed and issued in the future, and all requirements were to be stored internally in a structured and filterable manner.
The result of this work was a database for requirements recording and maintenance, which was configured to fit SCHMELING + CONSULTANTS’ projects exactly and could be used in a targeted manner in the company immediately after configuration.
Due to the active participation of the users during the workshops as well as the high intuitiveness and complete adaptation of the solution to the needs of SCHMELING + CONSULTANTS, a separate training of the users was no longer necessary afterwards.
Due to the large number of projects that have already been carried out with ReqSuite® RM, SCHMELING + CONSULTANTS has been able to build up a constantly growing reuse database of requirements over the years.
As a result, the consultants are now able to derive requirements documents together with their customers within a very short period of time, which exactly reflect the needs of the customers. The original goal of performing requirements management centrally and efficiently in a single platform has been fully achieved thanks to the structured database solution.
Consequently, time savings of up to 30% can be achieved in system selection projects compared to the previous way of working.
Initial doubts as to whether the software could actually help SCHMELING + CONSULTANTS to achieve its goals and solve its problems, and whether the solution would find sufficient application in the company, could not be confirmed.
On the contrary: In the area of system selection consulting alone, about three dozen projects have already been carried out efficiently with ReqSuite® RM. Furthermore, the area of standards analysis has also successfully established itself in the company as a fixed component of the service portfolio.
“ReqSuite® RM has become the core element of our requirements management. We now use the solution very successfully both externally for services for our customers and internally for our own organization. Due to the continuous functional development and improvement of usability and the high flexibility and adaptability of the solution, OSSENO is the optimal partner for us.”