In this fourth article in our series on relevant recent updates in the requirements management (RM) tool market, let’s take a look on Polarion. Polarion is one of the major RM tools that we list in the “Selected” section of our RM tools list.

Polarion ALM 2014 was released in March 2014 (overview of main new features), with a first service release Polarion ALM 2014 SR1 in June, and a second one, Polarion ALM 2014 SR2, in September. The new requirements-related features that are marketed in the product variant Polarion Requirements are mainly in the following areas: Working with document views of requirements and specifications, release planning, requirements interchange, and tool operations (administrative features).

Several improvements relate to document views and document-related work practices. The main improvements are that administrators can centrally define custom document types as well as document workflows (for details see the SR1 blog post). The document permissions scheme has been made more fine-grained (see SR2 blog post). In addition, LiveDoc documents can be supplied with custom metadata fields that can be defined on a per-document basis.

For release planning, a new top-level item Plan has been introduced. It allows for defining arbitrary release hierarchies, attaching work objects to plans, and exposes release data to reports and dashboards such as agile burn down/burn up charts.

For requirements interchange, Polarion’s release notes list now that native support for ReqIF round-trip without additional plugins or integrations were possible. For instance, Polarion LiveDoc documents can be exported as ReqIF or RIF documents.

A general administrative improvement offers new support for running Polarion ALM instances in clusters. Different kinds of topologies are possible, for instance running clustered instances all using the same central repository, or running multiple instances with individual repositories each, or combinations of these. The improvements are relevant to the definition of failover scenarios and for flexible performance scaling.

Details on requirements interchange, release planning, and on clustering are illustrated in the ALM 2014 blog post. For a complete list of 2014 and 2014 SR1 features, you might also look up the release notes.

Another news from March 2014 is that Polarion launched a new extensions portal: At users can access various kinds of plug-ins, connectors, templates etc.