November 22, 2019


Breakdown of Quality Indicators/Issues

The Quality Analysis uses the following set of Key Quality Indicators in its algorithms to score each requirement. Quality Indicator Description Best Practice Recommendation Imperatives Words and phrases that command that something must be done. A proper requirement has exactly one imperative. Ensure a single imperative is present in your…

The Quality Analysis uses the following set of Key Quality Indicators in its algorithms to score each requirement.

Quality Indicator

Description

Best Practice

Recommendation

Imperatives

Words and phrases that command that something must be done.

A proper requirement has exactly one imperative.

Ensure a single imperative is present in your requirement or split a requirement with more than one imperative into multiple requirements.

Negative Imperatives

Words and phrases that command that something must not be done.

A proper requirement does not use negative imperatives as it is difficult to verify.

Restate requirements with negative imperatives as one or more requirements with (positive) imperatives. Specify what the system shall do, not what it shall not do.

Vagues

Words and phrases that are imprecise, unclear, and ambiguous. They introduce uncertainty and leave room for multiple interpretations.

A proper requirement does not use vague words or phrases.

Restate the requirement with vague words as one or more requirements with clear and definite intent.

Optional Escape Clauses

Words and phrases that loosen the requirement specification and give latitude in implementation, reducing control and increasing risk.

A proper requirement does not use optional words or phrases.

Replace optional escape clauses with a verifiable statement and mark as required or optional as intended.

Optional Open-Ended Clauses

Open-ended clauses say that there is more required without stating exactly what. Open-ended clauses can lead to ambiguous, unverifiable requirements that do not reflect accurately the stakeholder expectations.

A proper requirement does not use open-ended clauses.

Replace the open-ended clause with the information that is being alluded to.

Superfluous Infinitives

Additional and unnecessary verbs or verb phrases in the requirements.

A proper requirement should avoid superfluous infinitives.

Remove superfluous verbs that cause verification issues.

Cross-Referencing Pronouns

Word and phrases to reference a person or an object without specifying who or what it is; for example, words such as “it”, “this”, “that”, “he”, “she”, “they”, and “them.”

A proper requirement should avoid the use of pronouns and cross-referencing pronouns.

Repeat nouns in full instead of using pronouns to refer to nouns in other requirements.

Immeasurable Quantification

Words or phrases that indicate an unmeasured quantification, such as” great”, "small",” medium-sized”,” best practice”, and ”user-friendly.”

A proper requirement should avoid the use of immeasurable quantifiers.

Replace with a quantity that can be objectively measured.

Non-specific Temporal Words

Words and phrases that reference non-specific timing, such as “eventually”, “until”, and “before”. These words are not verifiable and can cause confusion or unintended meaning.

A proper requirement does not use non-specific timing references.

Replace with specific timing constraints.

Continuances & Combinators

Word and phrases that follow the requirement’s imperative and introduce more detail to the specification.

A proper requirement avoids excessive use of continuances (generally no more than two).

Restate requirements with excessive use of continuances as multiple requirements each with simpler specifications.

Directives

Words and phrases pointing to information that aims to strengthen and clarify the specification, such as examples, tables, figures, or reference to other sections in the document.

When necessary, a proper requirement uses directives to increase the understanding and clarity of context.

Assess the need and the benefit of directives in the requirement. Careful and clear use of directives is recommended.

Universal Quantifiers & Absolutes

Words or phrases that generalize a quantity or quantities relating to a subject.

Universal quantifiers should be used carefully and sparingly as they make a requirement difficult or impossible to verify without a thorough understanding of the context.

Unless clear by its context, aim to restate the requirement with specific values for any quantities mentioned.

NOTE: QVscribe will show this indicator as a warning and will not affect the score.

Justification

Extra information that is not needed within the requirement and that define a purpose for why the requirement exists.

Information that defines why a requirement exists should not be within the requirement itself. Rather, this extra information should be defined within an accompanying "rational statement”.

Remove information regarding purpose/justification from the requirement – add this information to the rationale statement or create a new rationale.

NOTE: QVscribe will show this indicator as a warning and will not affect the score.

Passive Voice

A sentence written in passive voice has a receiver-acted-by- doer structure, rather than a more direct doer-acts-on-receiver structure.

Requirements should be written in active voice and passive voice should be avoided.

Restate the requirement into a doer-acts-on-receiver structure.

NOTE: QVscribe will show this indicator as a warning and will not affect the score.

Incomplete Sentences

Incomplete sentences are such where the object, action, or subject may be poorly specified or missing altogether.

Incomplete sentences should be avoided in general.

Read the incomplete sentence and add the necessary details such that the object, action, and subject are clearly identified in the requirement.

NOTE: QVscribe will show this indicator as a warning and will not affect the score.


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