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What is the purpose of the Requirement Traceability Matrix?

The requirement Traceability Matrix, or RTM, is a tool that helps to track and monitor requirements status from start of the project to end delivery.

The relationship between each requirement in a project and its corresponding Development and test result and issues can be tracked using a single Requirement Traceability Matrix.

RTM is developed using the initial requirements and is updated simultaneously with new development design and testing protocol.

You can trace the requirement Bidirectional, you can trace the requirement forward from starting of the requirement to testing or backward which is tracing the requirement from test case to the requirement

It is an important part of the project life cycle as it helps in ensuring that the requirements, products and services are meeting the industry standard. You can create the RTM by identifying the goals and artefacts and creating the template in excel and maintain the excel to check the progress and test results. There are currently multiple software’s in Industry used to create RTM and follow the progress via digital threat

Both hardware and software industry use the requirement traceability.

Components of RTM as below –

RTM is created using the industry standard and needs the below elements

-Requirement ID / Number – Which is unique for each project requirement

– Requirement Type 

-Requirement Description


– Unit Test case

– Test Case Status

– Deviations /Issues

Purpose of RTM –

The Purpose of forming a requirement traceability Matrix in a project is required because

  • Keeping track of the requirement from its source to trace the shifts, corresponding test cases, Development status and how the requirement will be    delivered through the lifecycle of the project
  • Using RTM, we can plan the number of test to be performed and type of testing and also trace the overall test defects also the analysis of the result. Also
  • It helps Managers for Making Decision better on the current status and if a requirement change is initiated how it will impact the change across development
  • It also helps Manager identify the project curve so the resource planning can be done
  • It also reduces the risk of Defect or change in project objective /goal as it provides a greater visibility across the development.
  • New requirement or Change in requirements can be accommodated by tracing the current status of requirement in the RTM
  • The main purpose is it helps in managing projects as you will know where exactly the project has progressed.
  • It helps the QA team on what to be tested. It improves test coverage and QA will have more visibility on testing the right things
  • The requirements are traceable throughout the lifecycle of the project and it starts from the initial phase when the project has started and follow till the fulfilment of the requirement. So you can track if the initial goals set are fulfilled.
  • It also helps in easing the work of compliance audits as its easier to demonstrate that all requirement and its corresponding test have been fulfilled according to compliance regulations using a single matrix instead of going through multiple documents

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