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[Software Development] What is Software Requirements Specification?

Author: Innotech Vietnam
Date: 23/05/2022

Software development is a sophisticated process that needs clear, concise, and executable requirements to guide it. So, how do we put these needs together and present them? A Software Requirements Specification (SRS) is the right choice for this situation. 

Through this blog post, we’ll go over a typical software requirements specification, including how to identify your product’s purpose, describe what you’re producing, and specify the needs before delivering it for review. 

 

Why Every Software Development Project Needs A Software Requirements Specification? 

 

The Software Requirements Specification (SRS) describes in great detail how software should work. It outlines and describes in detail the features that the software must have, as well as the software functions. 

If you want to produce software or have software built for you, you’ll need an SRS to guide you. The SRS document eliminates all the uncertainty that comes with non-written modes of project presentation, such as conversations in person or over the phone.  

With an SRS, you can easily create new softwares and avoid mistakes that might result in a poor final product and, eventually, project failure. An SRS ensures that all necessary information is on paper, even the software development process. 

 

Let’s imagine you want an outsourcing software development team to build software for your company’s needs. The next stage is to find software developers that can meet the required technical standards and produce a software that meets the requirements.  

Without an SRS document, developers are more likely to guess and build something they believe the software should be rather than following your exact idea. Because of the regular need for changes, the software will end up costing the customer more time and money. An SRS document, on the other hand, guarantees that all app requirements are clear enough for the development team to follow. 

 

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The SRS allows the software development team to: 

  • Plan the software’s development timeline and process in an efficient way. 
  • Estimate the total cost of the software’s production. 
  • Determine the programming stack necessary for the app’s implementation. 
  • Set up a test strategy and conduct software testing to ensure that the product meets the business objectives. 

In addition, the SRS can also help in the following: 

  • Highlight the software development life cycle and the associated dependencies 
  • Helps the end-user understand the software’s functionality. 
  • It gives investors a clear picture of the entire project so they can understand the app’s features and how they link to company needs. It will enable them in making investment decisions. 

 

Related Article: WHAT IS SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT LIFE CYCLE AND HOW IT WORKS? 

 

What Information You Should Look For In An SRS? 

 

An SRS document must have all of the requirements to guarantee that the software is fully developed. It also includes a description of how the software should work. 

A typical SRS document should include the following:

  • The goal of the finished software development project. 
  • The software’s overall functionality. The SRS should outline all of the product’s separate functions and how they work together. 
  • Real statistics demonstrating the product’s expected performance. This includes things like how long a page takes to load and the number of visitors at a time that the page can handle. 
  • Compatibility with other software and hardware interfaces. It aids in evaluating the product’s adaptability and how it interacts with various external interface needs and applications. 
  • The test cases that software testers will use to review the software’s performance. 
  • The user interface of the software development. User interfaces are critical for providing a pleasant user experience as well as enabling navigation and task performance. 
  • The software’s operating environment. With this information, it is easy to determine the product’s limits and design restrictions. It also outlines how the final software may be maintained. 

 

Software Development Requirements in the SRS Document 

 

Functional Requirements 

These are product features that enable the end-user to accomplish a specific task. It explains how the operating system’s many components work together to gain the target. Functional requirements specify describe how a system will operate in response to the user’s input selections. It comprises the methods to collect the data and the processes to handle it. All in all, the software development process must meet the functional requirements in order to function. 

  

Technical Requirements 

The product’s non-functional aspects are the focus of the technical requirements. The product will continue to function even without the technical requirements. However, the user’s experience depends on them. Overall, the technical requirements include all the users’ expectations that the software development process needs to meet. 

  

Expectations in software development include the following: 

Usability 

Softwares are usable when they are easy to use and provide a pleasant experience and interface for their users. The software’s UI affects its usability. It also covers the design of the software’s components. The UX, on the other hand, is accountable for how the user will feel when they interact with the software. 

Availability 

Availability in software development relates to how frequently a software product is online. 

Security 

It specifies the software’s level of security against a variety of risks. More secure softwares gain more trust in their customers. 

Performance 

The software’s performance is described by overall numbers (in range) which must be met. The SRS also outlines the minimum requirements that the software must meet in order to function properly. 

 

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How to Write an SRS Document for Software Development?

 

There are a lot of benefits to establishing an SRS document. However, it isn’t always easy. 

Here are five steps you may take to ensure that your SRS document is well-written. 

  

1. Set a Goal and Create an Outline

 

The first step is to establish your software development requirements document outline. This might be something you come up with on your own or you may choose to use an existing SRS template. 

The following is an example of an outline that you should use if you’re writing this yourself:

1. Introduction

           1.1 Purpose 

           1.2 Intended Audience 

           1.3 Intended Use 

           1.4 Scope 

           1.5 Definitions and Acronyms

2. Overall Description

           2.1 User Needs 

           2.2 Assumptions and Dependencies

3. System Features and Requirements

            3.1 Functional Requirements 

            3.2 External Interface Requirements 

            3.3 System Features 

            3.4 Nonfunctional Requirements 

There may be more (or fewer) things in your own outline. Once you’ve sketched out a rough draft, it’s time to fill in the details for software development 

  

2. Define the Purpose of Your Software Development 

 

This introduction is critical because it sets the standard high for the rest of the SRS. 

When determining this goal, remember the following considerations: 

 

Target Audience and Purpose of Use 

Assign roles and responsibilities for who will have access to the SRS and how to use it.  All members of the software development and testing teams will have access to this. Other departments’ stakeholders, such as the management team, sales, and marketing, might be able to read this as well. Defining this now will save you a lot of time in the future. 

  

Software Development Scope

What are the advantages, targets, and aims that we want to achieve from this software?  This should have connection to the company’s long-term objectives.. 

  

Term and Abbreviation Definitions 

In a project, it’s critical to identify all of the potential risks that may occur. Is there anything that may go wrong? What can I do to avoid these risks? This poses a risk to whom? 

For example, if a medical software development fails and injures a person, it is one degree of risk. Taking into account how often and how bad this risk is, we can come up with a plan to reduce it. 

 

3. Describe the Software Development Project You Plan to Work On

 

It’s now time for you to explain what you’re planning to develop. Is this a brand-new item? Or is it an add-on to something you’ve already made? Does this work with any other software? Why is this necessary? Who is this for? 

Having the answers to these questions up front makes the software development process much simpler for the team. 

 

The User’s Expectations 

Define who will benefit from the software and how because understanding the product’s target audience and the challenges they face is a key step in the design process. 

Who is going to use the software?  Are they primary or secondary users? What about the person who buys the software, as well as the end-user?  

  

Presumptions and Dependencies In Software Development

To what extent are we basing our expectations on real proof? Defining and outlining these assumptions ahead of time will save you time and headaches afterward. Were we just making an assumption based on what we know right now? Does this utilize the Windows framework? Take a look at these assumptions in order to better understand when your software development would fail or not work as expected. 

Finally, take note of whether or not your project is reliant on external sources. Are we reusing software from another project?  

 

4. Explain Your Specific Requirements In Detail

 

The more information you provide, the better your software development team will be able to fulfill the specifications. Although this might be a challenging task at first, it gets simpler as you break down your needs into sub-tasks. To name a few, there are: 

 

Functional Requirements 

As their name, functional requirements are critical to your software development project since they ensure the software to operate properly. 

You should ask yourself, “Does this add value to my tool’s functionality?” “What is the purpose of this?” or “What is the use of this?” might be helpful in this process.  

Besides, external interface requirements are also necessary, and they explain how your product will communicate with other applications. 

  

Requirements for an External Interface 

External interface requirements are a subset of functional specifications. For embedded systems, they are extremely crucial. They explain how your product will interact with other components. 

There are a variety of interfaces that you should make requirements for, such as: 

  • User 
  • Hardware 
  • Software 
  • Communications 
  • Systems Features 

 

Non-functional Requirements 

Not only are functional requirements essential, but so are nonfunctional ones in software development. 

They include: 

  • Performance 
  • Safety 
  • Security 
  • Performances 

Depending on your line of work, the impact of this requirement may differ. There are typically rules in the medical device sector that demand the tracking and accounting of safety in the industry. 

 

5. Send for Approval

 

After all, we’ve made it to the finish line! Once you’ve finished the SRS, you’ll need to get it approved by relevant stakeholders. All parties in the software development project will have to check out the most recent version of the document. 

 

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How Can You Know Your SRS Is Well-Written?

 

A good SRS is essential to the success of a software development project since it provides all the important and necessary information. After completing the SRS, double-check that it meets all of the standards for a good SRS document. 

  

1. Correctness 

In order for software to function correctly, it must have an SRS that meets all of the requirements. The accuracy of the Document is often revised and improved in response to user feedback. You can quickly fix any mistakes during first drafting thanks to the feedback from users. 

  

2. Consistency 

Consistency is essential in an SRS document. The software development process may be delayed due to the requirement to resolve the opposing parts of the product. In addition, consistency in language is essential to avoid any misunderstandings that can arise from the use of different terms throughout the work. 

  

3. Accuracy 

Documentation for the SRS must be exact. If certain values are required, specify them. Avoid using terms that have no clear meaning. The software, for example, must be “good.” What do you consider to be good? As a phrase that can be interpreted in many ways, it is prone to misunderstandings. So, in software development, while putting together an SRS, it’s critical to keep it short and to the point. 

  

4. Flexibility 

In order to accommodate future changes, the SRS document must be flexible. The SRS document must enable the application of innovations even after initial development. 

 

See also: SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT KPIS: HOW TO MEASURE YOUR TEAM’S EFFICIENCY? 

 

SRS Templates That You May Need

 

The following are a few instances of SRS in action in different industries. 

– Hospital management system 

– Restaurant management system 

– Online reservation system 

– Banking system 

– Inventory management system 

– Mobile app 

 

Bottom Lines 

 

As a matter of fact, every successful software development project requires an SRS document. 

Without a document outlining all of the software development requirements, a project is likely to be a complete waste of time, money, and resources. Therefore, you won’t be able to accurately estimate and allocate jobs, your development team will miss deadlines, and your consumers will be unhappy with the result. 

Although creating an SRS document is a time-consuming process, but with the proper IT partner, you won’t have to worry about it. Innotech has helped over 200 businesses prepare SRS documents and launch new software and we are eager to get to work on your next software project as well…. 

At Innotech, we have the most dedicated software development team to cater to all your needs. If you are looking for a software development team that can meet all your high expectations, contact us now!   

 

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