Developing the Design Specification

The project manager or development manager should prepare the technical specification document. One of the most important mandatory steps that the project manager should take ensuring the proper completion of the design specification, in order that the technical teams will be able to understand the sequence and description of the technical tasks. Developers are expected to code their programs based upon this technical specification, and if it is incomplete, the development will certainly be behind schedule and over budget. The technical specification should meet following requirements:

• The client has to approve the technical specification, as it clarifies the client's requirements in technical terms. Additionally, it is used to test the programs against the approved specification.

• The technical specification should show all the screen layouts. This helps developers understand the required screen designs and it speeds up the development time.

• The technical specification should explain the functionality of each and every object/component on the required screen layouts.

• The technical specification should clearly indicate the required back-end technologies. For example, if a screen involves any database activities then it is good practice to show all the database tables and the appropriate actions for those tables by different objects on the screen. The rationale is that it aids in proper database design and helps the database administrator (DBA) to establish the necessary privileges on the database tables.

• The technical specification should also stipulate any screens that involve user input, as these need to be validated. This will help the developer to understand and code the validations in program.

Within the technical specification, the development manager, together with the SMEs, should estimate the total development time needed for the project, including time to test the solution. This will help the project manager to verify and adjust the initial time and cost estimate that was made.

The architectural design should be conceptualized and documented in order to represent the high-level design of the system. The design should address major components and system integration.

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