The Requirements Traceability Matrix (RTM), as the name goes, is all about “tracing” the requirements end-to-end. End-to-end here means right from the inception to design to code to test to acceptance so that they don’t get ‘lost’ during the course of project.
Generally speaking, the Requirements Traceability Matrix is a one-stop-shop for anyone to look into and understand where the requirements come from, where do they get implemented and how do they get verified. It is the most convenient way for someone to take a quick high-level look at any requirement and make sure it is mapped to the corresponding design, code element and test case.
The most important task of the Requirements Traceability Matrix is thus to track all requirements and ensure whether or not they are being met by the current process and design. It also helps ensure that all system requirements have been met during the Verification process.
It is suggested that the Matrix be created at the very beginning of a project as it forms the basis of the project’s scope and incorporates the specific requirements and deliverables that will be produced. The Matrix also comes in handy during the Change Management process as it ensures any change in requirements is not interfering with other requirements. In addition to that, the matrix is also a helpful tool for the Quality Management process.
There are certain software like Quality Center that can generate RTM. Additionally, organizations may also have their own software to generate RTM.
All in all, the RTM shows the connection and relationship between initial requirements of the project and the final product/service produced.
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