Gap Analysis

Quality Solutions Consulting assists organizations in transforming from current state to future desired state.  Through identifying the present situation, we are able to list factors needed achieve future goals or objectives, and then highlight the gaps between current state and desired state.

Gap analysis consists of listing of characteristicfactors (such as attributes, competencies, performancelevels) of the present situation ("what is"), listing factors needed to achieve future objectives ("what should be"), and then highlighting the gaps that exist and need to be filled.  Our process flow consists of:

Mapping Business Processes to Application Processes > Identify Process Gaps > Analyze Process Gaps > Define Requirements for Addressing the Gaps

·         Identify gaps between the desired future business processes and product requirements against the processes directly supported by the packaged software and in-scope systems.

·         Analyze the process gaps, and define additional custom components needed to fill those gaps and balance stakeholders’ needs and constraints.

Map Business Processes to Application Processes

Quality Solutions Consulting will review the Business Process Design and Requirements to understand the product’s requirements.  In addition, study the Project Scope Definition to understand which business processes are expected to be supported by the packaged software and/or integration solution and which processes will not be within the project scope (operated manually or supported by existing applications).


We understand the out-of-the-box business process capabilities of the packaged software.  Our staff can determine the fit of packaged software processes with product requirements. 


We also document the process mapping in the Fit/Gap Analysis.  It is possible that the original Business Process Design will change to take full advantage of the packaged software’s out-of-the-box capabilities while minimizing the impact of its limitations. When this occurs, we evaluate the impact that the process changes have on other applications used in the process. Process changes likely result in modifications to these other applications, increasing the scope of work required.  Any such changes must be approved by relevant stakeholders. 


Requirements are the main input to this process.  However, the Business Process Design can be helpful in fully understanding and interpreting requirements.


Identify Process Gaps

Quality Solutions Consulting uses the Fit/Gap Analysis process, document where there is a business process that is not supported in the packaged software application.  In this case, the process becomes a Process Gap. 


We then cross-reference the Fit/Gap Analysis with the requirements and the future business process flows to ensure all requirements have been accounted for.   Process gaps can encompass a variety of issues in the Fit/Gap Analysis.   As such, process gaps include all gaps between the requirements of the desired future business processes and the application package capabilities. 


Analyze Process Gaps

Once the process gaps have been identified, Quality Solutions Consulting staff will coordinate with the stakeholders to prioritize and analyze them. 


To prioritize the gaps, we use the criticality of the requirements as a guideline:

·         Critical.  Core to the operation of the business.

·         High.  Very important to the operation of the business, used in day-to-day operations.

·         Medium.  Used frequently in typical operations, but not critical.

·         Low.  Non-critical, a nice-to-have. 


In general, the priority of the requirement will correlate with the priority of the gaps.


Once a gap has been prioritized, our consultants will analyze the gap to determine how to address the gap:

·         Manual workaround:

·   If the priority is low, a potential solution is a manual workaround. Such a solution involves using external tools or processes to address the gap.

·         Third party software package:

·         If the packaged software cannot meet a requirement, a potential solution is a third party software package.

·         Custom development:

·         In the event that a requirement cannot be met by the packaged application, and there is not a feasible manual workaround or third party package available, a potential solution is custom development.

·         Custom development could involve customizations to the packaged application and/or the development of new components within the integration solution.

Using the criticality of the gap and the potential solutions, we provide an analysis of each gap comparing the potential solutions for viability (ease of use, cost, business need, etc.).

Define Requirements for Addressing the Gaps

Once a solution for the gap is identified, our consultants document the requirements for resolving the gap. 


These requirements will be dependent on the type of resolution:

·         Manual workaround:

·         Document the manual workaround process, keeping in mind the need to develop training materials.  We will provide specific step-by-step process for the user to undertake.

·         Third party software package:

·         Develop the application specific (third party application) requirements necessary for a third party package to fit the solution. This process should mimic the overall packaged software process, to a smaller scale.

·         Custom Development:

·         We would create a functional specification document.  It helps develop the gap resolution.

·         Evaluate usability requirements.


As discussed in previous steps, a process gap could result in a number of potential resolutions, some strictly process based, and some technically based.