Requirement Analysis Using Rich Pictures Information Technology Essay

In south east England had a charity organization named YouthAction. The YouthAction have 25 different service centers in England. It provided some adventure and outdoor project to the young people for help to improve their life. Many of them are come from deprived backgrounds and they are at the risk of committing crime. The projects are supported by some funders such as the local authority.

They have a new project called Dig-it. The young people in this project will help to take cares the gardens of the elderly. The local authority seems this project can be success, but they want to collect the regular data of the project running before they invests more money. So that YouthAction need to setup a central management information system to record the necessary data.

In this report we will use Rich Picture to analysis the YouthAction environment and Use Case Diagram to develop the system for Dig-it. We also will provide the requirement analysis, technical analysis and environment analysis of this project.

Section A – Requirement Analysis using Rich Pictures

A1. Rich picture for YouthAction environment

We will use the Rich Picture to explain the YouthAction environment.

Figure 1 Rich Picture

A2.1 Key actors of the environment

Rich picture is mainly used to represent a structure, processes and issues of the organization.

By considering that the main purpose of the YouthAction is to help vulnerable young people stay away from risk of committing crime. The YouthAction provides many different projects to the young people such as adventure and outdoor activities.

After studied the case of the YouthAction, I found that the YouthAction consists of several parts or roles. They are Funders, Trust Board, Executive Committee, Head Office (including Financial Management, Marketing and Administrator), Service Centers and young people who are necessary to be supported or helped. Above are the key actors to form the charity, YouthAction.

In details, the YouthAction is a charity that is necessary to raise funds by local authority and charitable donations so as to support its operation. We know that are funders. As the aim of the YouthAction is to support or help young people improve their life by provided many different activities and services such as running a youth clubs, providing classes, and so on. All of the projects (included activities and services) are mainly operated or coordinated by their service centers located in different places in the south east of England. For each service center, there are many volunteers who run the projects and 1 service center manager who look after the operation of the center, the employment of staff and raising funds to support the projects. To manage different service centers, there is a regional manager. Besides of the service centers, there is a head office that includes different departments such as Financial Management, Marketing, Administrator, provide support to the centers.

Similar to other businesses, an Executive Committee including Chief Executive, Financial Manager, Operation Manager, Marketing Manager and Regional Directors is needed to supervise the operation. To make sure a proper use of funding, the whole operation of the YouthAction is monitored by an individual committee Trust Board.

A2.2 The conflict affecting the environment

Although all of the service centers run their services and projects autonomously, the Trust Board and Executive Committee carry out a major review of the operation of the centers. No doubt every place all has their own problems, but views of people may not be consistent with each treatment. The management and social workers are in particular, widespread disagreement. From the management point of view to be accountable to funders, they have the responsibility to prove that funds well spent. On the contrary, from the social workers point of view, their aim is to support or help young people improved their life. As a result, the management (the Trust Board and Executive Committee) and workers (service centers) must therefore have contradiction or conflict.

A2.3 The main focus of the environment

In my rich picture, it is mainly focus on 3 major parts. They are structure, process and concern / issue in the environment.

Structure includes several details and information of the environment. First of all is the hierarchy of the charity. For example, top-down introduction, the charity consists of a Trust Board, an Executive Committee, a Head Office including financial management, marketing, administration and other department, 25 service centers distributed in 3 regions. Next is the physical equipment were included in the environment such as computers, offices, and so on. In addition to, the key actors / characters such as funders, members in the Trust Board and Executive Committee, Regional Managers, Service centers’ managers, volunteers and targets (young people) participate in the environment are also the important information. What is more, in which part does new systems introduce to the environment is also mention.

Process refers to the workflow in the environment. For example, volunteers run services and projects, and a service center manager look after the way of operation in each service center. Another example is that Head Office mainly provides various support including assign volunteers, expenditure management to all service centers. In addition, data flows including data entry and access is shown on the picture also. Moreover, participant’s role and responsibility issues are also mention in the picture. For example, service centers are responsible to arrange activities and services while the Executive Committee manages the day to day running of the charity.

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Concern focus on what are possible issues in the environment, and what are people concern or bias from their standpoint. For example, Funders concerns on how do their funds be used, the service center manger concerns how does data be reused, verified and protected as well as the way of operation and volunteers focus on do activities help young people and make take interest.

A2.4 The control of system, data and processing lie in the environment

At the moment, data for managing projects or details are mainly processed and stored in each service center and a third party. So that it is not easy to collect the data of whole project. Each service center has its own system for data processing and investment. Apart from the internal system of each service center, data is needed to be entered into others systems operated by a third party because of required by the needs of each individual project such as local authorities, health services or other charities.

Section B – Requirements Analysis using Use Case Modelling

B1. Use Case diagram of the system

We will use the use case diagram to identify the actors involved to the system.

Figure 2 Use Case Diagram

B1.1 Primary scenario

The primary scenario is the flow or path of the normal case in the system. In the Dig-It system, the aim is to help the elderly look after their gardens. So that the achievement is make the elderly happy after help them to look after their gardens.

Use case:

Help elderly look after their gardens.

Scenario:

Primary (typical)

Precondition:

Elderly happy / satisfaction on the service (look after garden)

Flow through a use case:

1. Elderly be referral to the project

2. Assign group worked in elderly garden

3. Volunteer (leader) report progress to full time worker after worked

4. Full time worker made a call to check if such elderly is happy

5. Response positive (i.e. the elderly happy)

6. Record and end case

Postcondition:

Elderly happy / satisfaction on the service (look after garden)

 

B1.2 Secondary Scenario

The secondary scenario is one or more alternate scenarios, and possibly exception scenarios of the case in the system.

Use case:

Help elderly look after their gardens.

Scenario:

Secondary (elderly unhappy)

Precondition:

Elderly happy / satisfaction on the service (look after garden)

Flow through a use case:

1. Elderly be referral to the project

2. Assign group worked in elderly garden

3. Volunteer (leader) report progress to full time worker after worked

4. Full time worker made a call to check if such elderly is happy

5. Response negative (i.e. the elderly unhappy)

6. Record and end case

Postcondition:

Elderly unhappy / dissatisfaction on the service (look after garden)

Use case:

Help elderly look after their gardens.

Scenario:

Secondary (unknown elderly feeling)

Precondition:

Elderly happy / satisfaction on the service (look after garden)

Flow through a use case:

1. Elderly be referral to the project

2. Assign group worked in elderly garden

3. Volunteer (leader) report progress to full time worker after worked

4. Full time worker made a call to check if such elderly is happy

5. No any Response (i.e. the elderly didn’t receive call)

6. Repeat activity 3

Postcondition:

Service effectiveness / achievement is unknown

Use case:

Help elderly look after their gardens.

Scenario:

Secondary (exception)

Precondition:

Elderly happy / satisfaction on the service (look after garden)

 

Flow through a use case:

1. Elderly be referral to the project

2. Assign group worked in elderly garden

3. Elderly was not at home

4. Volunteer (leader) report the condition to full time worker

5. Full time worker rearrange the worked time in such case

6. Repeat activity 1

Postcondition:

Service effectiveness / achievement is unknown

B2 Summary on actors and use cases

Summary on actors and use cases of the Dig-it System

Actor

Young people

Elderly

Organizations

Full time worker

Volunteers

Use case

help elderly look after gardens

be referral by organization

be managed (group and work) with a volunteer

need help for look after gardens

comment on service (look after garden by young people)

* There are 2 type of organization (1 for young and 1 for elderly)

refer young people to the project

refer elderly to the project

* represented by young people and elderly (source) in the diagram

manage the project achievement

assign duty to volunteers

service investigation (on elderly)

report project achievement

group and lead young people

take duty

First of all, the definition of Case Modeling is identifying the interaction between users (actors) and system. Such interaction includes what functions or services do the system provide.

B2.1 Key actors of the system

Considering the Dig-it project, the main purpose of the project is to help the elderly look after their gardens on the one hand, on the other to help young people to stay away from risk of offending. To achieve the purpose as above, the project or system includes two major actors. One is elderly who need help to look after their gardens. Other is young people who are seen at risk of offending. Because the people (elderly and young people) participating in the project must be referral, different organizations that referred young people or elderly must be included in the project also. In addition, a leader who is needed to lead and monitoring the work of young people, is volunteer. Besides, a person who assesses the effectiveness and achievement of the project is a full time worker. Therefore, to make such project work properly and achieve the expected results, actors include full time worker, volunteers, elderly and young people are keys to the system.

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B2.2 Key activities of the system

Considering the purpose of the project, to make sure the elderly satisfaction on the service provides in the Dig-It system, ensure the service quality is very important. The key activities should include groups assigned to work have received sufficient training including the team attitude and obedience between young people and volunteer. Besides, an investigation after the group worked in the elderly is also important because this can help us understand scope for improvement.

B2.3 Alternative uses to produce secondary scenarios

The secondary scenario is one or more alternate scenarios, and possibly exception scenarios of the case in the system. Therefore, to identify such secondary scenarios, we should clarify what is the primary scenario at first. For the Dig-It system, the achievement is make elderly happy by help them look after their gardens. On the contrary of this achievement, the elderly unhappy or dissatisfaction is one of the alternative uses. In addition, cannot get the response and cannot finish the work are others alternative uses to produce the secondary scenarios.

B2.4 Assumptions about the system

To carry out the Dig-It project, we must have a comprehensive plan to achieve the desired objectives the scheme. Because the project carry out in south east London and the main purpose of the project is to help the elderly look after their gardens, we must first carry out a population survey on possible number of elderly. As elderly will be referred from a number of different sources such as the local authority or a charity working with the elderly, such population information can be asked from the referral sources.

To ensure the correct allocation of resources, such population statistics are very important. Moreover, we also need some policies to enable the smooth operation of the system / project. Thus, we need to make some assumptions:

1. Elderly who are referred to the project must be over 65 years old

2. The referral households with elderly only

3. Family with garden

The above point 1 to 3 is to ensure that the project can really help the needy.

4. Volunteers participate in the project must be have social work experience

5. Leadership is needed

6. Knowledge on basic operation of equipment is needed

The volunteers have responsibility to lead young people work for elderly, and the young people who were referred in the project seem to be at risk of offending. Thus the ability to lead such young people is very important. Moreover, inevitably encounter the work of idiopathic condition, volunteers must have good crisis management.

Besides the above assumption, there are many requirements are guided in the system:

7. The Dig-It project is managed by 1 full time worker

8. 1 volunteer is needed to lead young people as a group

9. 3 or 4 young people is grouped to work

10. Work (help elderly look after garden) carry out in the morning or afternoon

11. Group only works out a roster (i.e. give up one morning or afternoon only)

 

Section C – Critical Analysis of tools used

Considering that the ability of resource allocation in which depends on the financial capability of each organization, is different from different organizations or companies. For example, considering that a small company has only 10 employees while an international business has 1000 employees working for its own. If both of them carried out the same project at the same time, the resources included workers, equipment and any other supports allocated by themselve are also different. Of course, the achievement and effectiveness of the project does not depend on the ability of resource allocation but depend on the proper allocation of resources.

Therefore, to ensure optimum achievement and effectiveness of a project carry out by different organization, it is necessary to analyze in the initial phase. Such analyses include requirement analysis, technical analysis and environment analysis.

Requirement analysis is a process to determine the needs and condition of a new project as well as the expected achievement of such project or system. For instance, how many workers are needed in the project? Which types of equipment are needed in the project?

Requirement analysis basically includes several parts:

Eliciting requirements that are processes to collect the requirements of a system from users. For example, assume that a developer needs to set up a document management system to users. The developer must know that what the system needs to do for users. Does the system be used at internal only? Does the system be accessed on internet? Which types of document be managed in the system?

Analyzing requirements that are processes to clarify the details and the flow of a system. For example, who can access the system? Does the system need authorization to operate? How many functions include in the system? What is more, the processes help to find out all possible scenarios in the project.

Recording requirements that are processes to specific expression as documentation. For example, a case modeling describes the usage and flow of the system to help manage complexity.

Such requirement analysis is very important to the success of the project because it help developers determine what types of technique are used.

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Technical analysis is a process to evaluate securities by making assumption on the project from data research. By considering a developer needs to set up a document management system again. As the documents and files may involve important information of the business, it must not be accessed by other people (non-business personnel). So, it is important to analyze the achievement of a project also.

Environment analysis is a process to determine the structures, conditions, entities, events, and factors surrounding an organization. Use the Youth Action as an example. Their responsibility is to shown to funders the use of funds clearly as well as demonstrates the worth of carry on specific projects or activities. Therefore, it is very important to determine the needs and condition of a new project (requirement analysis) because it influences all activities and decisions in such organization.

All the above analysis are represented by system characteristics, organization structure, physical environment, tasks scenario and interaction steps, technical environment, system functions, and so on.

A rich picture and a case modeling provide useful information graphically. They describe the interaction between systems and users. Moreover, the process that converts such information to graphic, help developers find out conflict points in the projects or systems. As a result, such graphics not only present the condition clearly but also communicate with users easily. For example, by the graphics, users are easily to capture what they need and find out if the system meets the requirements.

In detail, by the Rich Picture, it helps us to analyst the appreciation of the problem situation. It provides the representation to us for think about the system. And clearly explain the situation to the problem owner. In this case, the management of YouthAction and we can clearly understand the situation of the organization by the rich picture. It can help us identify structure, processes and issues. Make sure us will not miss understanding and help us develop the system in the right way and match management need.

Use cases is use for explain what will the system do for the actor, step by step to describe how can achieve the goal. It will not use any programing language and clearly define the input and output of actors. Use case will cover all the scenarios to describe what happen will occur when different situation. It only use sample sentence to explain each step, without the detail regarding user interfaces and screens. Therefore the user can easy to read, focus and understand. In this case, we clearly describe all scenario of “Help elderly look after gardens.” So that the user can easy to understand what is the result of each situation. Not need waiting for the user interface design or prototype of the system. Therefore they can fast respond us is it match their requirement.

By considering carrying out a new project “Dig-It”, requirement analysis is necessary in the planning / initial state. Specifically, the main purpose and the expected achievement must be set at first. That is, the project is to help the elderly look after their gardens on the one hand, on the other to help young people to stay away from risk of offending. The latter purpose is the aim of YouthAction. As a result, we know that it needs many people to carry out the project as well as many types of equipment for look after gardens. After setting the goal of the project, it is important to consider how the charity “YouthAction” can make with the project.

In the environment analysis, we know that YouthAction supports and help young people through a number of funded projects in south east of England. Moreover, it has many employees and volunteers to carry out its projects. Therefore, it is no doubt that the main actors participate in the Dig-It project is young people. Besides, volunteers who work with such young people, act as leaders in the project. Similar to other charities, it is responsible to clarify the use of funding and monitor the achievement and effectiveness of the project, to ensure that such project should be carry on worthy. So, a full time worker (project manager) must participate in the project for monitoring and managing the project. To demonstrate the service achievement and effectiveness, statistics and surveys on happiness or satisfactory of elderly are very important. So, a full time worker is necessary to carry out such surveys for report the progress on such service.

Considering the use case of the “Dig-It” System, after receiving request on helping the elderly to look after the garden,

Elderly be referral to the project

Assign group worked in elderly garden

Volunteer (leader) report progress to full time worker after worked

Full time worker made a call to check if such elderly is happy

Get response

Record and end case

After collecting such data mentioned by point 6, reports regularly submitted to the executive committee and funders. Finally, the executive committee will review the effectiveness of such service with funder. If the conclusion is that the service or project should be carry on, YouthAction can get more funds for supporting the project or system. On the contrary, funders may stop to fund on the project or system.

The End

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