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SmartOffice for TFS will radically boost your productivity

I recently downloaded SmartOffice for TFS, a plugin for the Microsoft Office suite produced by Modern Requirements. This tool integrates Excel, Outlook, Word and Visio into Team Foundation Server (TFS), and will instantly simplify some of the more tedious tasks required for good requirements maintenance. Below, I have quickly highlighted some time-saving features of the tool. The list below only scratches the surface, however. Check back soon for more interesting ways of using SmartOffice for TFS.

Issues Tracking

Issues list maintenance is essential for project success, and SmartOffice for Outlook will shave valuable time off of this task. You can create work items, including issues, by uploading emails to TFS. The minute a stakeholder flags an issue and the email hits your inbox, you can create the issue work item in TFS, add the body of the email in the attachment, link to the appropriate requirement or feature, and assign the issue to a team member. Did I mention that this all occurs without leaving Outlook?

Traceability

Using SmartOffice for Excel, you can produce a traceability matrix for any work items in TFS. Worried about complete test case coverage? Map test cases by requirements, and you can spot the holes in coverage in minutes rather than hours. If you plug in business objectives, you can instantly see whether or not individual features or requirements are tied back to revenue-generating or cost-saving objectives.

The traceability report produced by SmartOffice can list different kinds of links within the same report as well. You can see parent-child relationships, affected by relationships, preceded by relationships, and test case mapping in one matrix if you so choose. Not only is this report incredibly useful and easy to set up, but it also generates in a matter of seconds.

Automatic BRD Population

Are you constantly finding yourself revising and rewording requirements in your BRD or SRS? With SmartOffice for Word, you can link the requirements that appear in the document with online work items in TFS. If any changes occur, you can simply refresh the requirements using SmartOffice and the most recent version found in TFS will populate into your BRD. You can even set up a BRD template using SmartOffice and create and edit new BRDs much more efficiently.

Test Case Creation

If you know anything about Seilevel, you know that we love our models. SmartOffice for Visio has several cool functions, but the most exciting is test case creation using process flows. If you are careful about linking Visio objects, SmartOffice will automatically generate test cases for all different paths of a process flow. Within Visio, you can link to the appropriate requirements too. If you are required to create test case scenarios out of multiple process flows, SmartOffice will help to both ensure thorough coverage and save time.

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