Starting a COTS Project: Assumptions (Part 2 of 3)

When we last saw Arthur and Heather, they were discussing Arthur’s commission system replacement project and what objectives the team should use to measure the project’s success. Heather had helped Arthur identify three objectives based on their discussion of the...

Make the LIST to Evaluate COTS Packages!

Why consider using a template for COTS research and RFPs? Evaluating COTS packages is challenging! Have you ever been tasked with finding “the right” software package? Frequently, there is more than one solution provider serving your problem space, therefore it’s...

What Does the CIO Say? An Interview with Ken Fulmer

Last week I had the pleasure of talking with friend and fellow IIBA Board director, Ken Fulmer.  Ken spent 31 years at Sonoco and was their Chief Technology Officer. After leaving Sonoco he stayed in the oil and gas industry and was the CIO for a company based out of...

Starting a COTS Project: Objectives (Part 1 of 3)

We’ve met Arthur previously.  He’s the Product Owner for an effort to replace the Commission System for a mid-sized insurance company in the middle of America. The insurance company Arthur works for has grown through acquisition. Until recently, one of its practices...

RFPs: Ripe for Prioritization

It’s one thing to create and send out a Request for Proposal (RFP), full of “must have” features and functions, to vendors of technology solutions. It’s wholly another effort to evaluate the responses – and the specific solutions – provided by those...

Selecting a Vendor Package (COTS)

There is a good article on the Requirements Network Group on Modifications to COTS by Bill Flowers.  www.requirementsnetwork.com I’ll be talking about Developing Requirements for Purchased Software (COTS) in Atlanta on July 21st at the SPIN (Software Process...

COTS, anyone?

In an informal survey with our customers we recently found that many business analysts are often working on requirements to enhance COTS applications. ERP and CRM processes have been commoditized for a number of years and have been implemented in many diverse...

Gap Analysis for COTS

Gap analysis is a well established technique for business analysts working on COTS (Commercial off-the-shelf) package implementations. It is amazing that this simple technique can be helpful with so many analysis challenges. Most gap analysis is done in a matrix or...

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