Written documentation is the least effective form of communication to create a shared understanding. Often stakeholders see things differently than developers do. Stakeholders sometimes see challenges and requirements differently between one another.
Using diagrams when implementing Dynamics 365 or the Power Platform helps create a shared understanding of requirements and vision for your solution.
Some of the key reasons why diagrams work:
- Diagrams help visualize a system and promote a deeper understanding of the requirements.
- They act as visual templates to guide when configuring your Solution.
- They help to understand complex parts of the system, exposing opportunities for simplification.
Ideally, you want to co-create diagrams with your team. Keep your diagram as lightweight and collaborative as possible. Down the track, you will know more and will be able to fine tune them.
Use Case Diagram (UML)
- Initial meetings with stakeholders to get a quick understanding of the requirements
- First workshops to validate requirements (and making sure I didn't miss anything obvious).
- As a start of most of my workshops to explain and remind what is the solution about and show, on the diagram, what will be the workshop about. Ex: If my workshop is about the Enquiry Process, I will highlight the Enquiry and related concepts on the diagram.
- As a tool to get a shared understanding and stimulate the generation of ideas.
- To describe the solution to my team, as it helps me structure my thoughts and narratives when I explain the system.
Entity Relationship Diagram
An Entity Relationship Diagram (ERD) is a type of diagram that illustrates how Dynamics 365 Entities (or "Tables) such as Contacts, Companies or Cases relate to each other within the solution.
ERD helps to understand how the data is structured and how your Dynamics 365 Entity model will be designed.