Posted on October 1, 2009 by


At the heart of business analysis is requirements. The business analyst will plan how to elicit them, elicit them, manage them, communicate them, analyze them, validate them, and verify them. But what exactly is a requirement? There is debate on how to exactly define them, but the BABOK® 2.0 defines a requirement as:

“(1) A condition or capability needed by a stakeholder to solve a problem or achieve an objective. (2) A condition or capability that must be met or possessed by a solution or solution component to satisfy a contract, standard, specification, or other formally imposed documents. A documented representation of a condition or capability as in (1) or (2).”

The BABOK uses four broad categories to describe requirement types: Business, Stakeholder, Solution, and Transition. Business requirements describe the goals or needs of the organization. Stakeholder requirements describe the needs of the stakeholders. Solution requirements describe the solution that meets the Business and Stakeholder requirements. Lastly, Transition requirements describe the needs arising from transitioning from what the organization currently has into the new solution.