Requirements Engineering and Solution Design


When a standard VSHN product (often a self-service product) is not sufficient to meet a customer’s needs, we need to find out what problems and benefits (technical and business) the customer is looking for and develop a solution to meet their needs based on VSHN services and products and possibly things we don’t already have. During this, we might need take decisions on what whether we offer something, how and when and who would do it, to be confident enough to offer and sell it.

This process describes high-level requirements engineering and defining solutions to offer, while Deciding to Deliver - Sales Offering describes how we make the needed decisions before each round of offering. The two processes work together to ensure that we have enough information to make sales decisions, but also to influence the solution design so that we can actually deliver it and run it profitably later.

Process Description

This is a simplified view, details have to be worked out by the Solution Architects and Sales.
  1. If there is a concrete request for a new. or an existing customer, Sales owns this request and creates an issue in Jira.

  2. A Solution Architect pulls this request from the Backlog and starts working on it together with Inside Sales to address the request. This can include anything (and more) of:

    1. Meetings to understand the customer’s challenges and requirements, and documenting them.

    2. Doing (paid) pre-sales Consulting or Workshop.

    3. Coordinating with Product Management and Product Owners on what we can and should offer.

    4. Working together with other Solution Architects to get other perspectives and more in-depth knowledge.

    5. Designing and documenting a Solution, before it is offered, including:

      1. Estimate effort of iterations we’ve to deliver.

      2. Define which products / services need to be in the offer.

      3. Find out pricing for undefined things.

      4. Determine Security & Availability requirements such as encryption, backup, fail-over.

  3. Sales keeps the commercial lead, one Solution Architect keeps the technical lead for the request.

    1. Works with Sales or Account Manager.

  4. If the solution is ordered, the Solution Architect support the involved Value Stream Teams and Account Manager with Project Management, until everything is clear and set up for the onboarding to start.

  5. During onboarding, the Solution Architect is available on short notice to support Project Management, Product Owner or involved Engineers.

Monitoring and Evaluation

Review this process after 2 months, then every 4 months: Retros with all involved parties.

Evaluation Criteria

  • Does this process address our need (driver) effectively?

This process is tracked and reviewed as part of as VIP-189