Over the past year I have been involved in preparing quite a few documents, proposals, presentations etc. I have also been asked to review quite a few of these documents. As an author or reviewer I like test what I am working on against 5 Ws and one H to see if the important aspects have been covered. The Wikipedia article provides a good background and history, including the 1902 reference to Rudyard Kipling Just So Stories.

It’s not that every document or presentation needs to answer each of these questions but that it should be a conscious choice not to include something.

A proposal/presentation view of the 5 Ws + 1 H – who is using the system and/or who is the proposal for

  • Who
    • Who is the document for
    • Who is going to use the system
  • What
    • What is to be achieved
    • What is the system required to do
  • When
    • When is the solution required
  • Where
    • Where is the system to be used or deployed
  • Why
    • Why is the new system required
  • How
    • How is the system to be developed
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