Do you know how to add value to a Specification Review?

Last updated by Babanazar Kamyljanov [SSW] about 7 hours ago.See history

The most important part of being in a Spec Review is adding value to the conversations. Your insights and feedback should contribute to improving the specifications, identifying potential issues, and suggesting enhancements. By actively engaging and sharing your expertise, you help ensure that the final product meets high standards of quality and functionality.

How do you make sure that your presence is adding value to the discussion and the product?

Tip #1: Know when to speak up

Knowing when to speak up can be one of the most difficult tasks for some people. Often when talking in a group, finding a spot to add in a point is difficult. When you have a question or something of value to add, try using the phrase, "Before we move on..." or use the Teams hand 👋 feature. If you don't speak up, important information might be missed or features may be left unrefined.

Tip #2: Think of other developers

Sometimes you might not have all the expertise to architect a clients' solution. If you need outside expertise, remember that you can ask quick questions to other developers. You can let the client know that this isn't your specialty and that you'll ask a specialist and get back to them shortly.

Tip #3: Don't be afraid to double check a requirement

Make sure you understand what they want, do not be afraid to repeat and double check a requirement. It's better for you to understand it now then to go back and ask them again later.

Tip #4: Recommend ready-made solutions

Talk about already made solutions. There are often already made solutions to these very same problems. Be sure to Google beforehand. Present the Pros and Cons of these against a bespoke solution. Sometimes the ready-made solution solves their problem without any further work required.

Tip #5: Refine the problematic requirements

Talk about the most problematic parts. These are the areas that should have the most details, so make sure everybody is fully aligned about what is required.

Tip #6: Ask great questions

Questions are the key in understanding client needs. Asking a few simple questions goes a long way. Some examples:

  • What is the goal of the product?
  • Where will the product be hosted?
  • Are there any performance requirements?
  • Are there any reliability requirements? E.g. Has to respond in x seconds
  • What are the security requirements?
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