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COMMON Requirements

April 23, 2015

I’m sure some of you are aware COMMON has a requirements process, but perhaps many of you don’t know about it. And even if you do know about it, things have changed!

Simply go to the COMMON website. On the right side of the home page, you will find a box titled COMMON requirements. It looks like this:


Select “Click here to Submit a Requirement” to be taken to the COMMON Requirements Center. At this point, you can choose between IBM i or AIX requirements. Click on the IBM i button to go to the IBM i Feature Requests and Requirements site.

This requirements center is available to everyone. You do not need to be a member of COMMON for access. In fact, you don’t even need a user profile to view and submit requirements.

Use the “Review Requirements” button to see the requirements that have been submitted. The “Add Requirement” button allows you to submit a requirement.

For those of you who will be attending COMMON next week in Anaheim, the familiar “blue sheets” used to submit hand-written requirements will still be available. However, the requirements site is now mobile-enabled and you can easily access the site from your phone or tablet and submit a requirement while in a session at the conference.

The following two screen captures were taken from my phone. The first is the list of requirements that have been submitted and the second is the form used to submit a new requirement.


When a requirement is submitted through the COMMON website, it is reviewed by the COMMON Americas Advisory Council (CAAC). The CAAC determines whether they should be submitted to IBM. It is possible the CAAC will decide to close the requirement without sending it on to IBM, but most requirements do get sent to IBM. Requirements that have gone on to IBM have the “CAAC ID” column filled in. This is the identifier that IBM uses to track the requirements.

When IBM receives a client requirement, it is assigned to the appropriate developer who reviews it and determines what should be done to address the request. It is possible they may ask for clarification or have some questions. This is why your contact information is important. The CAAC acts as the intermediary between IBM and those who submit requirements. As such, members of the CAAC may come back to you to ask you to help provide that additional clarification or background information the IBM development team may need.

When you submit a requirement, it may take some time for it to be addressed and completed. For example, if you submit a requirement today that can only be delivered in a base release of the i operating system, IBM may not be able to address the requirement until the release after 7.2 (or even later). However, some requirements can be addressed in a PTF within a relatively short amount of time.

Some time ago, Steve Will wrote about the client advisory groups (LUG, CAAC, CEAC and ISVs) in the blog Advisory Councils - Requirements and Strategy. Much of my job is working as the IBM liaison to these client advisory groups.

The IBM i development team takes client requirements seriously. IBM delivers somewhere around 70% of all customer requirements that it receives. That’s a pretty outstanding accomplishment!

Posted April 23, 2015| Permalink