Posted by tac_admin, June 17, 2015

Unify Stakeholders with the MoSCoW Method


The MoSCoW Method is a great way to get all your stakeholders to share the same unified goal—and it’s especially pertinent during your requirements elicitation sessions.

If you’ve been a business analyst for some time, you know the turmoil that can ensue when stakeholders share different visions for a project. In short, it’s rare that everybody wins when there is not a shared mission.

As a business analyst who’s climbing that ever-so-tall ladder of success, you can cut down on these differences and develop a plan of action that satisfies everyone.

To do this, use the MoSCoW Method, which breaks down elicited requirements into four simple categories.

1. Must have: Without this element, delivery will fail.

2. Should have: You may have to work with this element.

3. Could have: This element will increase delivery satisfaction.

4. Would like to have in the future: This element can wait.

In a nutshell, these four pillars simplify your project and streamline your ultimate success. When you cut down on distractions and competing priorities, your focus becomes clear, and you can create a more comprehensive solution.

The trick is to get stakeholders to come to a collective agreement. To complete this task, use the MoSCoW Method during preliminary requirements elicitation sessions.

Once you gather a conglomerate of requirements, write these on a whiteboard, overhead projector, or any other device that allows stakeholders to see the “big picture” of the project. Create some sort of chart or organization schematic and file each requirement where it fits.

For example, more user-friendly software may go under “must have,” whereas quicker customer interactions might fall in with “should have.”

In this way, you have a list of priorities to tackle, and with that hierarchy, your project becomes not only more transformational at the end, but also easier during the implementation.

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