Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The Importance of Analyzing the Enhancement Requests

The enhancement request handling is an important process. It is one of the most essential job of a product manager.

One thing that we should watch out are those solutions described in the enhancement requests. I have seen that many people try to describe the customer requirements together with some sort solutions. They feel that they are helping us and make our life easier. It is true that sometimes some kind of solutioning or describing the requirements in a way like describing product features help, but I can also see the problems. It becomes very dangerous when we have people from development side quickly response "Oh, yeh. I can do it." or " We can just fix this in this way".

Requirement and solution analysis is the job of a product manager or a solution architect. It is a step we should not skip. On one hand, we should appreciate the proposed solution the requester provides. On the other hand, we should make sure ourselves understand the business requirements. What is the business process, what are the business problems they are trying to solve. Sometimes, the requester do not understand our terminology and use the term not in the same way as we use. Clarify the definition of the term before jumping into the conclusion. If necessary, ask them to provide the details. We should avoid what we call "頭痛醫頭腳痛醫腳". We should try to fix the root cause instead of those symptoms.
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