Find out more about Business Requirements Document, Functional Requirements Document and how they differ.
Documentation is vital for every project. The different documents prepared during the project acts as foundation on which the project is build. Among these, two of the most important documents are Business Requirement Document (BRD) and Functional Requirement Document (FRD).
Business Requirement Document (BRD)
A Business Requirement Document (BRD) in software development is a document which addresses the requirements or needs of an organization. Every business requirement is triggered by some problem or event faced by the business and to solve this problem an IT solution is required. A well- prepared BRD defines these goals and objectives of the organization for developing a software or product with the help of IT. Business Requirement Document is also knows as Business Requirement Specification (BRS).
BRD is prepared during the initial phase of the project development by a Business Analyst. It is prepared after analyzing various enterprise factors, performing elicitation techniques in order to gather requirements, prioritizing them according to their importance and validating these requirements. Business Requirement Document records all the functionalities that are to be performed during the project development and also how the outcome is going to look like. This document in simple terms gives the overview of the whole project and acts as a road map for different stakeholders associated with the project like business stakeholders, project stakeholders, end users, etc.., to ensure everyone is on the same page.
Typically a Business Requirement Document constitute of the following:
Executive summary- Business’s requirements, ultimate goals.
Project Scope- what is included in the project and what is not – In-scope and Out-scope.
Objective- The ultimate outcome or goal of the project.
Background- Why requirement arise in the first place.
Stakeholder identification- Who all are related to the project.
RACI matrix- Identify who is responsible, accountable, consulted, informed at different events during the project.
Business rules- Major rules to keep in mind.
Assumptions and Estimations- Assumptions and estimations to be made regarding cost, time, etc..,
Constraints- Major obstacles that the project might face.
Risks- Possible negative variations from estimations and assumptions a project might face.
Glossary- To explain terms present in the document.
Now let’s see what an FRD is…
Functional Requirement Document (FRD)
To specify the requirements mentioned in Business Requirement Document in a more technical way i.e.., in a way that development team could understand and follow, a Functional Requirement Document (FRD) is prepared. It describes functional solution to the given problem which basically means it explains the “HOW” part of the project development. Functional Requirement Document is also referred as Functional Requirement Specification Document or Functional Specification Document or Product Specification.
A Functional Requirement Document is more of a technical document and hence it is prepared by Business Analyst under the supervision of technical experts. But, if the project is medium or small and if does not include major complicated technicalities then Business Analyst alone can take care of it. This document serves as a basis for the software development team and testing team to carry out development of the software and to build test case scenarios.
A Functional Requirement Document usually include the following:
Purpose of the project- why the project was initiated
Scope of the project- In- scope and Out- scope
UML diagrams- Use cases, activity diagram, etc..,
Non- functional specifications
Note: Every company use different formats using different aspects for preparing BRD and FRD depending on the project and their requirements.
Let’s dig into factors that differ these documents…
Differences between Business Requirement Document and Functional Requirement Document:
|Point of Difference||BRD||FRD|
|Definition||It is a document which describes why a software is needed, what problem it solves and what the desired outcomes of the solution are.||It describes how the software is going to function to achieve its set goals.|
|Constitutes||It includes business requirements in non- technical language.||It includes requirements and functionalities in technical terms and also with technical diagrams like Use cases or activity diagrams, etc..,|
|Time of preparation||It is prepared in the initial stages of the project, i.e., during requirement gathering stage of the project development.||It is also prepared in the initial stages of the project, i.e., during requirement analysis stage of the project development.|
|Who prepares them?||Senior business analyst and business analyst are responsible for creating BRD.||FRD is more of a technical details oriented document and hence, it is created by business analyst in the supervision of technical experts.|
|Who uses them?||BRD is used by business stakeholders, project stakeholders and end users.||FRD is used by development teams, technical teams, and testing teams.|
|Example||Improve security of the system by generating high security passwords for the users to login.||The passwords generated should be 8 digits long, with one upper case, lower case and a special character.|
These two documents look very similar but differ basing on their authors, who they are meant for, technical stuff, purpose, inclusions, etc.., however, both the documents are extremely important for any project building.