Write business requirements as a Hollywood manuscript

Writing business requirements is not easy, so how can we improve ways of working with requirements?

 Example from Final Draft

Example from Final Draft

One option is to look how they write a manuscript in Hollywood.

A film manuscript is described scene by scene according to a well defined structure,

  • The location where the scene is
  • Description of the scene in detail
  • What the actors do
  • What the actors say

and everybody in the business understand how to read this manuscript.

Based on the manuscript, you plan the production so that you have everything needed when shooting on set, not more, not less.

If you did a poor job during planning, you need to redo your shots or persuade the producer that you make some slight changes to the agreed story so you will be ready on time and within budget.

Business requirements are like scenes in a manuscript. The less detail we have when starting production, the less chance we have to know what we deliver.

The other problem in filmmaking how to avoid a fiasco, e.g. that our dearest film become a turkey instead of a Golden Globe winner and box-office-hit. 

In the manuscript, and when writing a storyboard, you have assure that all pieces fit together for the feature film. Sounds like a large IT project, where somebody should be responsible for the whole, not only the separate parts.