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Application Focus
Product Coverage (Nov 30, 2006) Packs More Punch
in Requirements Management Software has upgraded its requirements management software, adding major new functionality including requirements traceability, use case modeling and improved analytical reporting.

Although the term may be unfamiliar to many, requirements management software has been around for years and performs a critical role in the early planning stages of a new software project. After the scope and purpose of a project is defined, requirements management software is used during the design and analysis phase to spell out the project’s specifications and their relationship to what the software will do and how. Essentially, it creates a blueprint for design, imposes a structure based on best practices, and includes a single document repository to facilitate collaboration and track revisions. Requirements management software also helps companies organize and delegate work efficiently and track progress against project milestones; it is used by software developers, business analysts and project managers.

A year after Darren Levy and several others formed Levy Consultants in Santa Monica, Calif., in the spring of 2004, they realized they needed a simple and inexpensive requirements management application in order to service their clients. But the available applications were all complicated and costly to license and required complex implementations and lengthy training, Levy says. So Levy and his colleagues filled the void themselves and launched Gatherspace software in June 2005, marketing the software on demand for an affordable monthly fee. Now has upgraded the application, adding a “use case” window where users can obtain a step-by-step explanation of how a specific function works. The upgrade also includes a traceability feature that enables users to trace features back to the application specifications that created them and vice versa.

Finally, the new version includes use case modeling, enabling developers to create a software model based on specified requirements, and offers better sorting and filtering for slicing and dicing data in multiple ways, Levy says.

Gatherspace’s competitive differentiator is that it’s available on demand at a very low price point; it’s also use case-centric and is very easy to use, according to Levy.

“Other packages are complex and require a big investment in time and money,” Levy says. “People like Gatherspace because they get it up and running in minutes. It’s very intuitive.”

Competitors include Rally Software Development and IBM RequisitePro. Customers include the U.S. Department of Transportation, the Georgia Farm Bureau and a growing number of corporations.

The cost for the business edition (20 users) of Gatherspace is $75 per month with a 12-month commitment.

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