Requirements Tools
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Requirements Tools
http://www.scenarioplus.org.uk/vendors.htm by Ian Alexander


Requirements Tools

Overview
The market for Requirement Management (RM) tools looks heavily over-saturated, but new players still constantly enter: all the more remarkable given globally difficult trading conditions. Needless to say, other players quietly vanish from the market. However, free trials do seem to be becoming universal for new tools, and prices for web-based software are falling. There is a widening gap between the heavyweight, closed environment, local database, all-under-one-roof traditional RM tools, and the lighter, cheaper, web-based tools offering free integrations with other software (including sometimes the old RM tools).

Trends
Cheap
Low-cost, free trial, academic/prototype, single/few user, or simply free tools are steadily coming on to the market. Each one chips away at the market perception that a pricey system which ties you into one supplier is necessary. Tools making this trend include ARM, Axiom, Banana Scrum, DESIRe, Avenqo PEP, iRise, jUCMNav, LiteRM, OneDesk, OnTime, QPack, ReqT, RMtoo, Scrumwise, SEEC, TeamPulse, TigerPro, TrackStudio. Others are constantly appearing.

Handheld
In the long-term trend away from the massively-centralized, ivory-tower model of IT, pundits have long predicted the use of minimal, hand-held or wearable (Star Trek-like) client devices for every purpose. Researchers have experimented with mobile phone apps, and industry is moving in the same direction - already nearly all new RM tools are available Online.
Tools making this trend include OnTime with its iPhone server.

On-Demand, Online
Requirements tools are becoming simple to install, needing no system administration, and much cheaper, at least up front. This is achieved by keeping the data online, accessed by a browser application (just as Google is doing for ordinary office software). Of course this also enables more mobile access.
Tools making this trend include Accompa, Jama Contour, ReQtest and TopTeam Analyst.
Open Source, Open Data
Back in 2001 at the RE conference I found myself (by surprise) on a Future of RM Tools panel. I predicted that tools would move from the large, costly, monolithic, closed model towards a more open world where third-party tools could process RM data, e.g. for analysis, graphing, code generation or test planning. It has taken a long time, but finally in 2011 there appeared RM tools that are small, cheap or free, with open data, or even open source code.
Tools making this trend include RMtoo (open source, open data), and in a very different way DOORS (open data exchange with RIF, an industry-standard XML format for requirements).

Agile Requirements
New tools are marketed as Agile Project Management Tools, blurring the distinction between controlling the project through requirements and managing the project - never a terribly easy distinction to maintain, really. While a year or two ago, agile tools avoided all mention of the R-word, now they are happy to say that they capture and track requirements - only in a new, agile way.
Tools making this trend include Banana Scrum, OnTime, RequirementPro, Scrumwise and TeamPulse.
Yesterday's Fashion
The fad for Use Cases seems to have passed. Scenarios are still widely used in both traditional methods (as Concepts of Operations, or just 'Scenarios') and Agile (as User Stories) but these don't resemble Use Cases either in structure or in how they're applied.

Niche Specialisation
Vendors are creating (mainly web-based) tools marketed to specific vertical markets (eg automotive), to specific ways of working (eg agile software development, product management), or to specific environments (eg industry regulation).
Tools making this trend include Aligned Elements and Pixref. QPack bets each way, being available in both general and medical variants.
Not Calling it "Requirements" at all
Vendors may not even agree they are doing requirements: Agile in various forms -- Scrum, Extreme Programming, Test-Driven Development -- is supported by a widening range of software development and project management tools.
Tools making this trend include Banana Scrum, MockupScreens, Rally and VersionOne.
Integration
Tools try to integrate with existing documentation, e.g. by processing Microsoft Office files, rather than demanding that requirements be imported into a closed database. Tools making this trend include VisibleThread. More recently, integration with major RM tools is seen as a benefit, and tools such as ReqView are able to import ReqIF files from DOORS. SmartOffice4TFS makes Word, Excel, Visio and Outlook connect with Team Foundation Server, enabling the familiar tools to function as a software engineering suite.



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Accept 360��° from Accept Software Corporation
is a requirements management tool that also supports product planning. Tools help users to define and track feature dependencies with tree diagrams, and to relate these to the market, project plans, implementation considerations and competitor analysis.

Accompa from Accompa
is a requirements management service provided on the Web for a small monthly fee per user. It can be customised with any number of fields and reports using sorts and filters. It has Web 2 style collaboration mechanisms for discussing and agreeing requirements. A Wizard guides the creation of specifications, which can be exported to Word, HTML, Excel, PDF.
Raj Patel of Accompa writes:
"Accompa is an affordable, web-based requirement tool that enables product managers and project managers to capture, track and manage requirements. It can be customized right from the web-interface to fit an organization's needs. It features extensive collaboration features such as integrated discussion boards and social tags. A 30-day free trial is available."


Agile Cycle from AccuRev
is a "fully-integrated Agile Application Lifecycle Management (Agile ALM) product suite". It permits both issue-based and feature-based (a feature corresponding roughly to a software function or use case) development. There are tools for requirements management, handling change and traceability, reporting, managing builds and configuration and so on. "Big RM" functionality such as history and version control are covered. As such, Agile Cycle seems to integrate techniques and tools from classical RM as well as Agile software development and Project Management.


Agility from Agile Edge
is a tracking database for user requirements, issues, tasks and bug tracking, permitting tracing between these items. There is a simple user interface displaying a table of items with status, symbols and text.


Agilo for Scrum from Agile 42
is a tool for Scrum implementation, agile development, requirements and user stories.
Marion Eickmann of Agile42 writes:
"Even if Agilo is not a pure requirements tool, we strongly connect the Scrum ideas with requirements engineering."


Aligned Elements from Aligned AG
is a tool for handling requirements traceability and risk in the medical device industry. It includes a Requirements Management module. Its purpose is to handle all the evidence needed in the strict regulatory environment of medical devices. This seems to represent a trend towards specialised products performing essentially familiar RM tasks but using the language of a particular domain.
Karl Johan Larsson of Aligned writes:
"Aligned Elements is a requirement management solution targeted towards the Medical Device industry and is essentially built to manage Design History Files. Aligned Elements incorporate all relevant parts of the DHF Management process such as specifications, test cases, FMEA risk analysis, structured reviews, trace analysis, validation checks and is controlled by FDA QSR 21 CFR Part 11 user management etc."


Arcway Cockpit from Arcway AG
is a visual RE tool in which written requirements provide the bridge between different "visual landscapes" such as the business landscape and the IT landscape. The "landscapes" are defined visually with block diagrams or "maps" showing interfaces between people, processes, and software. The diagramming notation and visual concept seems to be unique to Arcway, while the idea of tracing between business processes and IT systems is classical but very freshly expressed. The examples seem to be strongly oriented to transactions and databases: whether the concept would work for other kinds of systems is unclear, though the principle of connecting events in the world to events and structures in the machine is quite general. This looks like the most exciting new product of 2007.
Peter Aschenbrenner of Arcway AG writes:
"ARCWAY Cockpit is a tool for managing requirements. It supports ARCWAY’s concept of visual requirements engineering (VRE). In VRE requirements are linked to visual high-level models of the system under design. Requirements specified in ARCWAY Cockpit can be imported from and exported to MS Excel. A fully customizable MS Word, HTML and Docbook report interfaces allows for ad-hoc reports of specific requirements or complete specification documents."


ARM (Automated Requirement Measurement) from NASA
is a simple tool that carries out a set of checks on a list of (shall-statement) requirements in plain text. As such it can be applied to almost any set of contractual style requirements just by exporting them to a plain text file and then running ARM. It helps to find a range of possible problems. Once you get the idea, it is easy to re-implement a set of ARM-like rules with your own extras in a scripting language.


Avenqo PEP from AVENQO
is a management tool for "knowledge entities" - i.e. not just requirements but also things like test cases. The database allows stakeholders to have their own views on to the shared project information. Communication is supported by email-based discussion and task management. Currently (2009) the Community Edition is free.


Axiom from iConcur
is a requirements management tool with a free 'Community' and a paid-for 'Professional' version (free trial available). The tool consists of a client and a server which can both be downloaded from the iConcur website. Axiom can be used to create requirements and any other desired artefacts such as use cases, tasks and test cases, as well as traces between them. The integration with Microsoft Word allows Word documents to contain Axiom requirements. The tool allows 'wireframe' user interfaces to be built in drag-and-drop style. A rules language supports structured, unambiguous requirements, the rules editor checking them as they are being written.

Banana Scrum from CodeSprinters
is a web-based project support tool for agile software development, using the Scrum method, and suitable for use with programming languages such as Python and Ruby on Rails. Requirements are captured on the equivalent of index cards and immediately coded in short iterations known as Sprints.

Blueprint Requirements Center from Blueprint Software Systems Inc.
is a requirements tool supporting both requirements definition and collaboration. Definition is via rich text, user interface mockups, use cases, business process, data and roles. Collaboration is supported by "rich simulation" which combines process, data, actors and user interface requirements into "live, interactive simulations". Blueprint is "tightly integrated" with HP Quality Center, enabling auto-generation of test cases, custom Word documents and other artefacts.
Edna Cheung of Blueprint writes:
"Blueprint provides the most comprehensive requirements management tool to define and manage software requirements that drastically improve software quality and accelerate project delivery. Define requirements using integrated text and graphical formats, validate using generated documents and live simulation, and communicate baselined requirements and automatically generated tests via developer and tester tool integrations. Integrated glossaries, business processes, rich text, use cases, user interface mockups, and data definitions foster clear requirements for true stakeholder validation. Visual requirements traceability and flexible views and reports enable efficient impact and coverage analysis. A central requirements repository with security, versioning, history, and baselines supports distributed teams."


Caliber from Micro Focus (formerly Borland)
is a well-known requirements management tool. It is intended for large and complex systems, and provides a database of requirements with traceability. The company views requirements as part of the software quality management process, which it considers also includes testing and defect tracking. Caliber is Internet-based, and it handles document references, user responsibility, traceability, status and priority. Caliber is paired with the Define IT analysis diagram tool which can help to discover requirements.
Chip Carey of Starbase (a former owner of Caliber) wrote:
"The exciting thing about RM and Caliber in particular is that it brings all departments together within the software development lifecycle and puts them all on the same page - it provides a mechanism for communication and collaboration and effectively provides a synergy where before they were perhaps separate efforts and maybe counter-productive."

CaseComplete from Serlio Software
is a requirements management tool centred on Use Cases. It allows users to quickly create use cases then add diagrams, requirements, screen prototypes, and test cases to create a complete set of requirements. It can generate reports in Word, Excel, or HTML formats. The tool can generate activity diagrams (flowcharts) from sequences of steps and extensions (exceptions).

CASE Spec (formerly AnalystPro) from Goda Software
supports requirements editing and traceability, change control, diagrams including use cases, and other features of full RM tools at a low price per seat.
CASE Spec is described as a "Specification, Requirements & Lifecycle Solution".
Kris of Goda Software, Inc writes:
"Analyst Pro is an affordable, scalable and collaborative tool for requirements tracking, traceability analysis and document management. It is easily deployable and customizable to your project needs."

CodeBeamer from Intland Software
The CodeBeamer RM module can be used alone or as part of the CodeBeamer ALM tool. It provides for tightly-integrated round-trip editing with Microsoft Office (both Excel and Word). Requirements can be viewed as a table or as a document, with a reorganizable hierarchy (drag and drop) and properties. It supports traceability (matrix, navigable links, test coverage), baselining and versioning, and explicitly supports medical requirements and risk management to IEC 62304. Files can be imported via CSV (comma format files) "or IBM DOORS". If using the ALM tool, requirements can be added to agile "Sprints" for project management. A free trial is available.
Eva Johnson of Intland writes:
"Our software (codeBeamer ALM) has a fantastic RM module built-in"

Cognition Cockpit from Cognition Corporation
is a tool for managing not only requirements but a wide range of requirement-related materials including sources such as interviews and minutes, and system analyses such as risks and FMEA. Cognition Cockpit then handles (traceability) relationships between the requirements and the parameters that drive them - such as the need to mitigate risks.
Mitch Hayes of Cognition Corporation writes:
"Cognition Cockpit is an intuitive web-based application that facilitates your Product Development Process (PDP), enabling teams to dynamically manage customer inputs and voices, features and requirements, risks, costs, and critical parameters. Cockpit’s approach uses the best practices from systems engineering and requirements management, together with simple yet powerful collaboration to weave together critical steps in your PDP for traceability, analysis, and reporting."

Change Request Management from Serena
see Dimensions


Contour from Jama software
Contour "connects the entire project team to requirements regardless [of] location using an intuitive Web 2.0 interface. Contour enables the team to see impact before making changes, who’s working on related items and how current tasks relate to project deliverables. Contour runs on all major platforms and is built on open standards for seamless integration."

Core from Vitech
Core is a systems engineering tool spanning requirements management, modelling and simulation, architecture definition and V&V. The original Core was one of the very first RM and behaviour modelling tools on the market. The current version includes UML and SysML modelling, with architecture frameworks such as DODAF. A free trial is available.

Cradle from 3SL
Cradle is a multi-user, multi-project, distributed and web-enabled requirements management and systems engineering environment. It is intended for all sizes of requirements and systems development projects. Cradle can link to corporate PDM/EDM systems. It offers configuration management, edit histories and version control. It automates document production and can manage the generated documents. Through its web interface, it can integrate disparate stakeholder groups by creating customisable read-write portals to all project data.

Mark Walker of 3SL writes:
Cradle can deliver unlimited requirements and systems modelling scalability to the desktop through web and non-web methods that allow capture and parsing of requirements and their traceability through every part of all C4ISR, ISO, DoD and INCOSE recommended processes.

DevSpec from TechExcel
DevSpec is the requirements tool in TechExcel's Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) suite of software engineering tools which includes planning, agile and test applications, and it is integrated (at no extra cost) with those tools. It provides a Wiki (editable hypertext structure) to create and manage linked documents, including scenarios and requirements. These are stored in a central data repository and managed with an enforceable workflow if desired. Documents can be imported from Word and PDF. Versioning, baselining, querying and reporting are provided.
Fred Jabbour of TechExcel writes:
DevSpec is a requirements management solution that is designed to provide visibility, traceability and validation of your requirements. It allows teams to collaborate as they define and manage requirements, specifications, stories, and other artifacts. While users enjoy a simple editing view, there is a highly configurable process engine behind every action they perform. This gives DevSpec the ability to enforce a workflow, manage security roles, and track custom attributes for each item.


DESIRe from HOOD Group
is an "expert system" tool for checking requirements. It is a free add-on to DOORS or Word.

Dimensions RM and Change Request Management from Serena
are software products that handle traceability through systems development. Dimensions supports visual prototyping as well as traditional requirements. Dimensions RM integrates with Serena's CM product to support software development throughout the life-cycle. An API is provided for further integrations. The prototyping element seems to be the same as Serena's Prototype Composer tool.

Dolphin from Street Light Software, Inc.
is a "simple, efficient, and cost-effective" web-based tool for RM. Dolphin appears to provide features similar to a bug-tracker, namely a table-like list of items to track or requirements to be implemented. There seems to be scope to import a spreadsheet with multiple (attribute) columns for status, priority etc. Requirements can be exported to Word "with a single click".

DOORS from IBM
DOORS is a tool primarily for large organisations which need to control complex sets of user and system requirements with full traceability. It provides good visualisation of such documents as hierarchies, and its extension language enables a wide range of supporting tools to be built, and many are provided as menu commands and examples. Further options include DoorsNet which allows controlled interaction over the Internet, and the Change Proposal System which automates the requirement review cycle. There are live interfaces to many CASE tools, and the promise of tight integration with the Tau toolkit for specification, design, and testing based on UML and the SDT approach to real-time systems development centred on telecommunications. DOORS use is therefore moving towards integrated project support. The web-based Focal Point is also in the IBM stable.
Gabriela Zornoza writes: Our tools are the best choice when you have complex projects, hierarchies of information, and it is critical to conform to customer requirements and standards. This is because we offer the best traceability – which makes the difference between our products and the rest. Ours is the best way to see information links between documents. Traceability is the key to doing requirements: where they come from, where they go. Our tools are easy to learn and to manage: DOORS for requirements life-cycle management; CHANGE and SYNERGY for configuration management: the three offer a complete integrated solution for upper level requirement down to lines-of-code traceability.


DXL Editor from Sodius, a French software house.
DXL Editor is as its name says a specialised code editor with all the features you could expect for editing DOORS DXL, with syntax highlighting and compilation straight from the editor. It runs on the open-source Eclipse framework. Currently (2009) node-locked licenses are available for free.

FeaturePlan from Ryma Technology Solutions
FeaturePlan is a "requirements gathering, analysis and definition" tool (what used to be called Requirements Elicitation or Capture, and which is now more trendily named Discovery or Creation) intended for Product Managers. Since these early tasks are barely covered by most Requirements Management tools (which focus on supporting traceability, documentation, and configuration management), FeaturePlan's claim that it works alongside the likes of Caliber RM, RequisitePro and DOORS is very plausible. It provides a simple table for basic market requirements, and supports this with traceability (ah well, perhaps it's really an RM tool too) and numerous predefined reports. The idea of giving 'customers' direct access to FeaturePlan's web forms is engaging, however.


Focal Point from IBM
is a market-driven requirements management tool. It incorporates customer collaboration, prioritization, visualization, decision-making and planning processes inside a tailorable web-based platform. It links requirements to market segmentation, competitor analysis, release planning and other processes in product life cycle management.

GatherSpace from GatherSpace.com
is a requirements management and use case development tool that offers multi-user and team functionality. The system is an online solution with different user-tiered packages. There are a variety of reports from basic functionality reports to use case models. A free 30-day trial is available.
Darren Levy writes:
1) Gatherspace is totally online, no software to download
2) Designed and coded by analysts and project managers who fully understand the process of gathering requirements
3) With an intuitive GUI, Gatherspace also provides a to do list of "what's next" to create in addition to defining analyst based terms.

G-Marc from Computer System Architects
is a tool for supporting system procurement and development activities, including requirement capture, attribute management, traceability, and change control. The more advanced versions include natural language analysis, metrics, and behaviour modelling.

in-Step RED from microTOOL
In-Step RED combines Requirements Engineering and Project Management in a single tool. A free trial is available. The system uses floating licenses and client/server software.
Michael Schenkel of microTOOL writes "It offers well-founded requirements engineering as well as integrated, requirements-based project planning and complete transparency of results. It comes with different diagrams from UML and SysML, e.g. block diagrams, requirement diagrams, system context diagrams, use case diagrams or goal diagrams. Of course traceability of requirements and test cases as well as handling huge amounts of data in lists and documentation via a push of a button is provided."

inteGREAT from eDev
is a tool that integrates requirements development and management and test document automation. Goals, actors, functional requirements, constraints, risks etc (have eDev been reading Discovering Requirements?) are captured into a hierarchy; standard documents (business requirements, system requirements, use cases, test specifications) are then all generated from the models automatically. As the name suggests, integrations with other tools and export to standard formats (spreadsheet, HTML) are built in. A free trial is available.

iRise from iRise.com
is a tool for previewing or prototyping a software application before doing any coding. In the process, the requirements are "completely and unambiguously fleshed out - including application and page flows, user interfaces, business logic, data structures and other requirements."

jUCMNav free from University of Ottawa
jUCMNav is a free, Eclipse-based graphical editor and an analysis and transformation tool for the User Requirements Notation (URN). URN is intended for the elicitation, analysis, specification, and validation of requirements. URN combines two complementary views: one for goals provided by the Goal-oriented Requirement Language (GRL) and one for scenarios provided by the Use Case Map (UCM) notation.

Justinmind Prototyper from justinmind
Justinmind Prototyper is sold under the appealing slogan "Experience your software before it's built", in tune with the "right-shift" philosophy of shortening cycle times and validating requirements with stakeholders as early as possible. The tool enables the user to design "advanced wireframes" and to run "realistic simulations" of these to "capture and communicate" the requirements. Unusually, it is available for Mac as well as PC. It is integrated with the Visure (formerly IRQA) RM tool.

Leap SE from Leap Systems
Leap SE is a requirements engineering CASE tool that produces object-oriented models directly from a system requirements repository or specification (SRS). A 30-day trial version is available.
Brian Smith of Leap Systems writes:
"By translating English into logical models for software development, Leap SE achieves RAD from the source, dramatically shortening the systems analysis phase for software projects."

LiteRM from ClearSpecs Enterprises
LiteRM is a low-cost requirements tool built on the 3rd-party Whizfolders outlining and note organizer tool. LiteRM includes templates which can be tailored. Its data model includes requirements of different types, user roles, use cases, acceptance tests, and definitions, as well as requirement states and traceability links. Capabilities include search, report, import and export.
David Gelperin of ClearSpecs Enterprises writes:
"LiteRM changes the game from 'easy or capable' to 'easy and capable'.
LiteRM is as easy as MS Word and as capable as the heavyweight RMs (almost)."


LEXIOR from Cortim
is a service for reviewing requirements, involving both automated checks and "native English speaking reviewers". Turnaround is promised within 48 hours. Output is in the form of review reports including European Space Agency-style "Review Item Discrepancies" (RID forms). Services are provided to (for example) the automotive and aerospace sectors.


MKS Integrity for Requirements Management from MKS
MKS Integrity for Requirements Management is a 'right-weight' RM tool. It is built as an integral part of a wider project support system, which uses workflow to take requirements through to design, step by step "within a highly flexible authoring and approval environment". It integrates with Microsoft Word, organises requirements hierarchically with rich text and "an intuitive document centric view", provides history, baselining, metrics, traceability to source code, suspect links, etc. Low cost of ownership is claimed.

David Martin of MKS writes:
"the clear connection between requirements, development activity and development artefacts delivers an unprecedented level of auditability, something every IT organization must demonstrate for Sarbanes-Oxley compliance."

MockupScreens from Igor Jese
MockupScreens is a rapid User Interface prototyping tool. You create screen mockups and organise them into scenarios, complete with buttons, fields, lists etc. Free evaluation copy from website.

Objectiver from Cediti
Cediti is a spin-off from the University of Louvain, Belgium (UCL), and the tool is based on the KAOS method of analysing goals devised by Prof. Axel van Lamsweerde. The tool thus has a solid foundation (capable of formal proof) for modelling goals, requirements, agents, entities, events relationships, actions, etc, with all the relationships between them (cause-effect, conflict, instance-of, goal refinement, etc), supported by editable diagrams.
Nicolas Ducourthial of Cediti writes:
"Key advantages of Objectiver are:
it enables analysts to elicit and specify requirements in a systematic way,
it produces well structured, self-contained, motivated, easily understandable, standard requirements documents,
it provides highly effective way to communicate about the requirements,
it ensures traceability from requirements to goals and from high-level, coarse-grained behavioural specifications to requirements."

OneDesk from OneDesk Inc
OneDesk (formerly FeatureSet) is a combined online RM and customer relationship management (CRM) tool. There is strong support for 'social collaboration' with live chats, discussions etc. The tool claims to provide requirements capture, elaboration, and decision support. Other features like task assignment, scheduling and tracking are more like bug-tracking or CRM. Pricing is per user per month. A free version (up to 4 workspaces and 50 customer accounts) is available.

Kimberley Chan of OneDesk writes: OneDesk is easy-to-use web-based on-demand requirements software. It is aimed as small to enterprise-sized businesses, also incorporates customer feedback management, project portfolio management, and social business collaboration aspects such as discussion forums, blogs, chat, idea voting, and more. With these, businesses can efficiently communicate with their customers, and get their products to market quickly.


OnTime from Axosoft
OnTime is an RM tool that unusually comes in both on-line (hosted) and traditional (installed) forms. The pricing sets it in the mid-range of the market: a single-user installed license is free, while the offering of 10-user licenses sets out an "enterprise" stall. There is also an "Express" version of OnTime, hosted only, for up to 10 users, providing basic requirements tracking at much lower cost. Axosoft also offer agile software development (Scrum) planning tools. An interesting feature is the availability in the top-of-the-range "Enterprise" version of an iPhone server, i.e. engineers can view and edit requirements from a handheld device while in the field.
Zachary Burruel of Axosoft writes:
"With a Windows Client and Web app available, OnTime provides your company with the right local or hosted RM tool solution."

Pace from ViewSet Corporation
Pace is a web-based requirements management tool; no client installation is needed beyond having a web browser for basic tasks. Client components have to be installed for specific tasks like information modelling and interfacing to Microsoft Word. The data are held centrally in Oracle or any other relational DBMS. Pace supports Windows, Linux and Unix. The product is designed to be scalable and cross-discipline. It provides a process definition tool to enable requirements administrators to configure the system to their organisation's processes. Administrators can define their own folders to organize documents arbitrarily. Pace provides a "full" document management system, enabling eg source documents and standards to be stored and retrieved from the web-based user interface. These can be linked to (though at what level - document, section, paragraph, etc - is not clear). Collaboration is supported with discussion threads, a change control process, and automatic alerts to users on monitored events (eg a specific object is modified).


Pixref from Pi Shurlok
Pixref is a "lightweight but powerful tool for automating project specific traceability checking". It emphasises compliance with AutomotiveSPICE, so it is essentially a tool emanating from that vertical market, though no doubt it would work equally well in other areas.
Pixref is claimed to be "particularly effective at scanning through large numbers of files extracted from a standard version control system and works with many file types, including text files, Microsoft® Office and MATLAB® SimulinkTM." This is interesting as an approach, as it implies that the tool discovers the ACTUAL status of traceability in a project (does the design document correspond to the requirement for this particular component?) rather than relying on "requirements engineering" to create and maintain traces "by hand" using a tool.
The parent company, Pi Shurlok, is a "Control Instruments Company" so it is interesting to see this company not only developing its own tools "where a COTS tool is not readily available in the market or the cost-benefit analysis makes it prohibitive", but also having the confidence to market the tool.

Polarion Requirements from Polarion Software
Polarion is (like Pace and others) a web-based requirements management solution. It promises better requirements elicitation and collaboration, lowest cost of ownership in the market, and to be as easy as MS Office with the power of Web 2.0 technology.


PTESY from Andromeda
The Project and Test Engineering SYstem (PTESY) is a whole life-cycle support system, based on a relational database. It seems to be a research spin-off in the process of commercialisation (2009). It claims to produce all documentation automatically, generating Word documents and Excel spreadsheets from database elements.

QPack from Orcanos
QPack is described as a "complete set of Requirements tools", in an ALM (application life-cycle management) suite. The tool provides a simple "traffic light" icon display against each requirement of its defect status, whether a test case has been created for it, etc. Requirements are structured in a hierarchy within each type (market requirements, product requirements). Traces can be created manually or automatically by "converting" market requirements to product requirements (effectively copying and linking in one operation). Traces can be viewed as a matrix or in a graphical display. Metrics such as rate of fixing defects can then be graphed (thus combining RM with features more typical of Project Management or ALM tools). Interestingly an industry-specific Medical Version of QPack is also available to assist with FDA certification of medical products. A free version is available (2010) for small teams of up to 5 users.

QuARS from the SEI
The Quality Analyzer for Requirements Specifications is a tool for checking requirements in natural language, produced by the SEI. It is documented on their website as a research project but it isn't immediately obvious how to get hold of it. If you manage to obtain it, please let me know how you did that and I'll post details here.

Rally from Rally Software Development
Rally (formerly Projectricity) is a requirements management tool integrated with a set of web-based tools to manage the entire project lifecycle. The toolkit contains specialised tools witdedicated on-screen forms to manage change requests, issues, defects, test plans/results, tasks, schedules, risks, documents and more. Rally supports Agile software development.


RaQuest from SparxSystems Japan
This is an add-on tool for managing a list or tree of requirements with SparxSystems' UML modelling tool Enterprise Architect. It has been developed and marketed by SparxSystems' sister organisation in Japan.
SparxSystems Japan writes:
"RaQuest is not dependent on any specific methodology for requirement management. We aim for RaQuest to be used for the processing and management of any requirements.
Moreover, the greatest feature of RaQuest at present is being closely coordinated with Enterprise Architect which is an UML modeling tool. This will enable you to refer to requirements from within Enterprise Architect, and to maintain a relationship between UML elements and requirements."


Raven from Ravenflow
The "Requirements Authoring and Validation ENvironment" (RAVEN) is apparently the first commercial tool meant specifically to help find errors in requirements text. It works by translating use case text into UML activity (ie flowchart) and responsibility diagrams, where with luck any errors will be spotted by "requirements writers" or "business leaders". A requirements export integration to RequisitePro is provided.
"RAVEN automatically creates activity and responsibility diagrams from plain business English text so you get immediate visual feedback on your use cases.
Once you see the errors, you can transform the unstructured English into "requirements English" that specifies the use case clearly, consistently, and completely. RAVEN helps you become a better requirements writer."


ReMa (Requirements Manager) from Accord
is a fully-featured Requirements Management tool. Its features are clearly derived from the capabilities of DOORS, (with structures such as modules, attributes, requirements, links and so on) but the implementation is entirely new, with an easily-navigable hierarchy that can be expanded and collapsed as in a code editor.

ReqT from Lund University
is a free and open source requirements modelling tool and language. An example requirements model in reqT: Model(Feature("hello") has (Spec("The system shall greet."), Status(ELICITED))) ReqT is an embedded domain-specific language (DSL) for the Scala programming language (a modern, platform-independent, object-functional language running on the JVM). Requirements are turned into computational units that can be executed and manipulated using Scala scripts and visualized with e.g. HTML and Graph Viz. Also, reqT has support for constraint solving of release planning and prioritization problems. ReqT can be executed from a command shell using your favourite text editor, but also with any IDE that has Scala support, e.g. Eclipse.

RequirementOne from RequirementOne Inc
RequirementOne is a requirements management tool and project management software that enables users to manage all of their requirements in one place. The web based software offers project planning, online tender management and bug and defect tracking.
Requirements from Workspace.com (formerly Lighthouse from Artifact Software)
wins the prize for least distinctive RM tool name. It is a requirements management (database) tool available both as a hosted web-based service and as software to run on your own premises. Requirements can be imported from Word and exported to Word, HTML and Excel. The usual facilities like traceability, history, comments, filtering and release management are provided. Traceability is partly automated by "converting" items of one type into another, eg use cases into tests, or (reverse engineering) tests into requirements: old-timers will see this as a "copy-and-link" operation. The same concept is applied to Issues and to Change Requests, making for a simple but powerfully general approach to project data management.
Derek Vansant of Artifact Software writes: “With Lighthouse you can collaborate and manage requirements in the context of the entire application life cycle. Lighthouse allows users to link requirements to other project artifacts, including user comments, tasks, change requests, tests cases and results, defects, issues, and more. As a result, real-time traceability reporting is completely automated. Lighthouse is available both online and on-premise and is entirely free for 1 project and five users (not just a trial). If you need more access, it is only $25 per month per user. Simply go to our web site to create your free account.”

RequirementsAssistant from Sunny Hills Consultancy BV
is a tool for checking and reviewing requirements.


Requirements Management Database from Requirements Management, LLC
wins the prize for the RM tool with the longest name. It seems remarkable that such a generic name could have been trademarked - we will now all have to talk carefully about "RM database tools".
The tool offers a pre-configured solution for the common requirements elements including priority, description, history, stakeholders and so on. Use Cases and Test Cases are similarly also built in. Not surprisingly for an RM database, filtering and reporting are simple and intuitive.
A "no questions asked" download and free 14-day evaluation is offered.


RequirementPro from Enfocus Solutions
Requirement Pro is a web-based RM tool that is claimed to support stakeholder analysis and agile development (with 'Requirement Bundles'). It is intended to be accessed by stakeholders (with a specific 'Stakeholder Portal') as well as developers.

Requisite Pro from IBM
Requisite Pro aims especially at managing change in requirements, with traceability for software and test specifications. It is closely linked to Microsoft Word, and Rational is a Microsoft Development Partner. The tool permits the use of Oracle on Unix or Windows as the back-end database, and also supports SQL server on Windows.

ReQtest from ReQtest AB
ReQtest is "software testing in the cloud", built using Software as a Service (SaaS). It allows businesses to vary the number of licenses paid for month by month. As the name suggests the focus is on testing; RM features include requirement editing, prioritising, status tracking, and linking to tests and bugs (perhaps bug tracking is also RM). More elaborate documentation of requirements is possible simply by attaching documents or screenshots/mockups to requirements as files.

ReqView from Eccam
ReqView is a lightweight RM tool that allows users to edit requirement documents offline, and to collaborate using Google Drive or a suitable file-based version control system such as SVN or Git. ReqView supports rich text format requirement description, custom attributes, file attachments, discussions per requirement, history, traceability links, and ReqIF import (e.g. from IBM DOORS). ReqView is still in beta (2014) but is already available for free evaluation.
RESDES from Jenz und Partner
The REpository-driven Specification DEvelopment Suite is a collection of software applications and services that make use of a shared requirements repository. There is support for the evaluation process; there is a browser to view requirements packages; there are web services supporting access to the repository. The overall idea is for projects to reuse requirements in areas of software functionality and quality that are useful on many different software development projects. This tool is thus quite different in scope and purpose from typical requirements management tools such as DOORS, and "does not overlap" with their functionality.

Rhapsody from IBM
Rhapsody is an Object-Oriented Analysis and Design tool for embedded software. The emphasis is on design, with analysts using UML to define objects for fully automatic code generation. There is a range of integrations between DOORS, Rhapsody, and other products, helping to bridge the gap between textual requirements and model-based design and testing.


RMtoo from Flonatel
RMtoo is a free, open source RM tool, the first such to be listed here. Apart from that, RMtoo is distinctive for its command line interface: developers can use it alongside their favourite text editors and software build tools like emacs, vi, eclipse, make and maven. Output is equally varied - to PDF, HTML, graphs and lists; and it's configurable using XML too. Traditional RM tool features like history and baselines are provided. The one thing there isn't is a "colorful GUI" - there's no GUI at all. Relationships between requirements can be visualized with dependency graphs.
Andreas Florath of Flonatel writes: "rmtoo gives everybody the unique chance to adapt the tools to their needs and their processes because it's open source. Often other tools force the user to change their habits or processes. With rmtoo the user has the control."

Rommana from Rommana
is an integrated life-cycle management suite, comprising tools to support the processes of requirement, issue, project, use case, test and change management. Rommana means 'pomegranate', which with its many seeds tightly packed into a single fruit is a symbol of integration. It is a web-based system which supports functional, quality and other requirements, which can be imported from Word or Excel files. Tasks, Risks, Actions, Use Cases and Change Requests can be associated with a requirement. Versions of a single requirement can be maintained to support different releases of a product. Models and other artefacts can be associated with a requirement as design progresses.

RQA (Requirements Quality Analyzer) from The REUSE Company
is a checking tool that carries out lexical and syntactic analysis of requirements, providing warnings of errors. Integrations are available for DOORS and IRqA.


SAT from CassBeth
The Specification Analysis Tool analyses and checks requirements automatically but "allows humans to make final decisions at each level". It looks for "complex specification problems such as missing capabilities" and gathers metrics. SAT is one of a range of natural language analyzers from CassBeth including tools to check Legislation, Medical Transcripts, Plain Language (for government use) and Contracts.


Scrumwise from Scrumwise
claims to be one of the simplest and most intuitive Scrum tools on the market. Like all Scrum tools it does requirements as a 'backlog' of user stories or other items. There's a free trial, free academic use, and otherwise follows a low-cost monthly rental model. It's web-based. I played with it live on the web and it really was very easy to use. I didn't even think of RTFM.
Free Prototype Educational Tools for Systems and Software Engineering from SEEC
The Systems Engineering & Evaluation Centre at the University of South Australia (UniSA) offers a suite of free tools that "can be used in the classroom and in the workplace". The tools include the fancifully-named TIGER, ACE, ET, CARP and RAT (ahem. I recall the immortal line from another project back in 1991: "RAT tool is mouse-driven"). These stand for:
Tool to InGest and Elucidate Requirements (TIGER), ie free text extraction with keywords
Acceptance Criteria Elucidator (ACE), ie editing the criteria in a database
Requirement Enhancing documentation Tool (ET), ie attribute editing
Comparison Analysis of Requirements Priority (CARP), ie prioritisation
Risk documentation And profiling Tool (RAT), ie risk attribute editing.
It can be seen that these form a single basic RM environment. They have a similar user interface.


SmartOffice4TFS from eDev
connects Microsoft Office tools (Word, Excel, Visio, Outlook) with Team Foundation Server, which enables the suite to function as a software engineering system, linking requirements to other project information.
Traceability is provided by SmartExcel4TFS, enabling requirements traceability across single or multiple projects.
SmartVisio4TFS integrates Visio diagrams and models with projects.
SmartWord4TFS allows requirements to be traced to and kept in synch with work items.
SmartOutlook4TFS allows emails, meetings and tasks to be made into trackable work items, which can be discussed in threads.
Mitra Azizirad of Microsoft is quoted on the eDev website as saying "eDev’s SmartOffice4TFS™ gives development teams another great option for requirements gathering and creation of software specs using familiar Microsoft products, and connecting those documents to the projects they define."

SpiraTeam from Inflectra
SpiraTeam is a web-based application lifecycle management suite. It includes components for Requirements and for Test. It is designed with agile in mind, accompanying a planning and a testing tool.

Smartcheck from Smartware Technologies
is a tool for checking requirements. It "locates ambiguities within requirement or technical specifications based upon a word, word category, or complexity level."

Statestep from Statestep
is a specification tool based on a state model. The user interface allows required behaviour to be defined in decision tables. The tool helps to check systematically that all unusual cases are considered. The resulting model is a finite state machine, which can be checked automatically for completeness and consistency, e.g. that no undesirable state is reachable. The tool has been used commercially to specify consumer electronic systems.
Michael Breen writes:
"As a relatively specialized tool based on creating a model of behaviour, it's a bit different to most of the tools in your list...
Anyway, one sentence could be:
'Among other things, Statestep features a unique colour-based interface which makes it feasible to deal systematically with (for example) millions of possibilities - and so to find obscure problem cases otherwise likely to be overlooked in a specification.' "


Teamcenter from Siemens
includes a requirements tool (formerly Slate): "Industrial Strength Groupware for managing requirements, architecting systems, and accelerating product development". Tools cover design and testing as well as requirements. The examples on the website include radar and aircraft carrier, so there is a perceptible military-industrial orientation. The tool provides for conventional box-and-arrow diagrams, but also allows document and object hierarchies, and arbitrary traceability linking. An interesting feature is a budget which provides a recursively added hierarchical spreadsheet for each attribute ('technical allocatable' in Slate jargon) which is to be budgeted. Slate is apparently genuinely object-oriented and as such should suit large industrial projects that want to use OO analysis and design. Some systems engineers see Slate as a tool that mainly supports the life-cycle after the requirements phases. It provides limited support for requirements capture.
Harold Knight of SDRC (an earlier owner of Slate): Slate is fundamentally different in Systems Engineering because we manage all components of the design in true Object-Oriented fashion - not documents or paper but information, so we are a system design tool - system engineers can design and view systems from any perspective.


TeamPulse from Telerik
is an agile project management tool, including the ability to "capture" requirements. It is available in both free "community" and paid versions.

The free version "offers tools for idea and requirements management, Iteration planning and scheduling, as well as tracking and analysis."
The paid version "improves the efficiency of software teams by allowing them to effectively capture requirements, plan and measure results, and analyze the state of projects, while constantly improving the delivery process." TeamPulse is integrated with Microsoft Lync, and two-way synchronized with Microsoft TFS. There is a free 60-day trial.
Konstantin Boev of Telerik writes: TeamPulse helps software teams capture, define and decompose project requirements in the best way possible by facilitating collaboration and context flow between different team members.
Tiger Pro is one of the free SEEC tools.

TopTeam Analyst from Technosolutions
is a commercial multi-user requirements management tool. It supports use cases, traceability, screen prototypes, documents, issue tracking, baselines and change proposals. Word processing and diagram tools are included.

A rich text editor is built in to enable bold, italics, tables, embedded images, etc. For use cases, the editor automatically keeps steps in the main flow (normal scenario) and alternate flows (variations) synchronized. TopTeam Analyst automatically converts use case flows into UML activity diagrams. Traceability can be handled in 4 ways: with an Explorer, a Matrix, a Network Diagram or a straight Traceability Diagram.

Tormigo from Modesto
is a tool that permits the use of Enterprise Architect, a popular UML system and software analysis tool to trace back to Requirements. Tormigo enables the structured import of requirements from Word or OpenOffice, and handles versioning of changes to requirements once in Enterprise Architect. Requirements can be mapped to Enterprise Architect Use Cases with a traceability matrix. Data are held in a choice of SQL databases on Linux or Windows. A trial version is available.
An additional tool MANEA synchronises Enterprise Architect with MANTIS Bug Tracker, which might possibly offer projects a way of tracking simple lists of requirements.

TrackStudio from TrackStudio Ltd
is a traceability (or tracking) tool configurable for any task. Tasks could include tracking issues, requirements, documents, staff etc. About 38% of TrackStudio users use it for requirements. It forms a hierarchy of objects (tasks and subtasks) to any depth. Fields too are fully customisable. A TrackStudio workflow can be used to track a requirement through states like Draft, Proposed, Accepted, Implemented, Tested. Users access the database via a web interface so distributed working is fully supported.
TrackStudio is free for up to 5 users, and available in single server or global versions for unlimited numbers of users.

VersionOne from VersionOne
is a tool for planning and managing agile software development projects. It supports several agile methodologies including Scrum, Extreme Programming, DSDM and Agile UP. Agile practices such as release planning, iteration planning, tracking, user stories (the agile form of scenarios / use cases), task management are all covered. The approach is said to be scalable to multiple projects, releases and teams. A free trial is available.
Leeann Berner of VersionOne writes: "VersionOne is recognized by agile practitioners as the leader in agile project management tools and gives you the most visibility into and confidence in your software development process."

VisibleThread from VisibleThread
is a tool for measuring how well documents comply with any practices you choose to apply. The tool checks, among other things, that there is text under each section heading in the appropriate template; looks (in the manner of ARM) for keywords indicating vague or unverifiable requirements; and allows the user to identify where in a set of documents any chosen terms are in use (possibly indicating traceability relationships). A free trial is available.


Visure (formerly IRQA) from Visure
Visure "is a flexible and complete requirements engineering lifecycle solution capable of streamlining your requirements processes, allowing more effective collaboration, increasing quality, supporting requirements capture, analysis, specification, validation and verification, management and reuse."


Yonix from Yonix
is a tool "as easy to use as Word and Excel" but supporting online collaboration between business analysts "in real time". Product users can define their own requirement types. Traceability is handled as directional relationships such as Parent/Child. Ownership, status, priority and versions are all supported. Documents and other files can be attached to requirements. A free "community edition" for up to 5 users, and a free full product trial are both available.
Jody Bullen of Yonix writes: Yonix is unlike anything on the market. It is a powerful and richly featured stakeholder collaboration and communications platform for business analysis, described as a 'talent amplifier for Business Analysts'.