What And How Of Requirement Gathering - Part Two

In continuation of my previous article, I’ll add some more techniques which can be used for information gathering.


Prototyping allows gathering information by faking the production environment. In this technique, quite a lot of tools can be used to collect the information, such as software programs to monitor/record mouse clicks or keystrokes, camera to monitor visual activity, etc.

Basically, what type of tool should be used solely depends upon what type of information you want to collect. The cost of prototyping might be high because the information gathered from this approach can be easily validated with a reason that prototyping is experimental rather than the responses received from the users.


Prototyping is preferred in the scenarios where it is impossible to shadow a person. A Prototype can help you to get the below sort of information.
  • Use of technologies, tools, and applications.
  • Verification of workflow.
  • Customer specific quality requirements and goals.
  • User interface related issues.

User Instruction

Another approach which can be used for collecting the information can be User Instruction. In this technique, users actually train you on the tasks that they perform. This allows you to participate in each and every activity and to view each and every step from the user’s perspective. In this technique, a user can gain more knowledge as compared to that by reading documents.

Note - In this method, it is mandatory for the user to be habituated to teaching others, else it would be very frustrating for both the parties.

It is always advisable to get the instructions for the same task from multiple people as the same task can be performed differently by different people. In this way, you might get to know the shortcuts to perform the task.

Focus Groups

In this technique, a presentation is given on a particular topic to a group of people and post-session, they provide feedback to the facilitator. This approach is based on group interviewing techniques in which the group of people consists of all the stakeholders which are part of that process.


One should have properly defined topic and must have the ability to keep the group focused.

This technique might not be successful if participants are located in different geographic locations. This technique may also fail if the group of people participating in a defined session doesn’t belong to that activity or doesn’t have much knowledge of the topic.

That's all I have to share. Hope you enjoyed reading this.

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