IBM Rational Collaborative Lifecycle Management (CLM) Hands-on Tutorial

IBM Rational CLM exhibits the traceability relationship between requirements and development thereby enabling the business analyst and project manager to know the status of the set of business requirements and the planned work items.

In short, IBM CLM is a combination of Requirements Management, Change & Configuration Management (CCM), and Quality management under one single ALM platform for better & easy creation of traceability views.

IBM Rational Collaborative Lifecycle Management (CLM) is primarily a set of 3 integrated tools which include:

  • IBM Rational DOORS NG – for Requirements gathering and management
  • IBM Rational Team Concert – for Project Planning, SCM and Build management
  • IBM Rational Quality Management – for Test management activities

This integration helps the entire project team to look at one single tool to capture all of the project artifacts instead of using multiple tools in silos with NO proper traceability, real-time information about the progress of work and reports.

NOTE: This tutorial has many images so allow it to load properly.

Introduction to IBM Rational CLM

Introduction to IBM Rational CLM

With IBM Rational CLM a business analyst can look at what is happening to the set of business requirements i.e. whether it is developed and tested or not. Similarly, a project manager can look at the status of a set of planned work items in case of scrum implementation it would be STORY as an example of work items and its associated developer tasks and test cases.

For waterfall implementation, it would be a BUSINESS NEED work item and its associated developer tasks and test cases.

Work Items is an important concept in IBM Rational Team Concert to manage and track development tasks. Examples of work items include EPIC, STORY, TASK, BUSINESS NEEDS, RISK, DEFECT, RETROSPECTIVE etc. In addition to these pre-defined work items, teams can also create their own custom work items. Work Items are an integral part of project planning and are linked to code changes using SCM features and build management.

Lifecycle Project for IBM Rational CLM

Typically when teams use multiple tools there is no proper traceability to track artifacts end to end in the project lifecycle.

The concept of a lifecycle project in IBM Rational CLM helps to connect the entire team to a single platform. So by creating a lifecycle project, you can link Business Requirements to UML Design artifacts and then to Work Items and Work Items to Development Tasks & Test cases. All this is done dynamically.

Using the lifecycle project will help you to see the project created in each of the 3 containers i.e. Requirements Management (RM), Change and Configuration Management (CCM) and Quality Management (QM) as shown below and also linked so that the traceability view can be easily created.

lifecycle project

More about creating a lifecycle project, adding users, roles, permissions and license updates can be found here.

Each CLM application can be accessed using the following URL’s

  • RM – https://<ServerName>:9443/rm/web
  • CCM – https://<ServerName>:9443/ccm/web
  • QM – https://<ServerName>:9443/qm/web

Once you login to the RM URL as mentioned above, you can easily navigate to the other applications as well.

Create Requirements for IBM Rational DOORS NG

Let’s start by creating Requirements. The steps mentioned below are to be followed to create the same. The requirements once created will be linked to User Stories and Test Cases.

#1) Login to RM application using the URL https://<ServerName>:9443/rm/web

Login to RM application

#2) Click to select the CLM_Project after login. The public dashboard will come up as shown below.

(Note: Click on any image for an enlarged view)

select the clm_project1

#3) Click on Artifacts > Browse Artifacts to create requirements.

browse artifacts1

#4) Left click on the “Features and Vision” folder and then select Create Artifacts

Features and Vision

Create Artifacts

Enter name as “Place Order for Music CD”, Artifact Type as “Feature” and Artifact Format as “Text”. Then click on OK.

#5) The newly created requirement is shown below:

newly created requirement

#6) Define the attributes for the newly created requirement. Then select the requirements you just created and select the “Edit Attributes” option.

select the requirement

Edit Attributes

Add the attributes as shown below and then click on Save


#7) In order to display the attributes, click on the icon to select “Configure Page Settings“.

Configure Page Settings

#8) Now click on “Configure Columns to Display”

Configure Columns to Display

#9) Now select the Business Priority and Description attributes to be displayed and unselect the ones that are not required and click on OK.

change column dislay settings


As you can see we have created a Business Requirement. IBM Rational DOORS NG also allows you to create different types of requirements like Actors, Non-Functional requirements, any custom requirement types, and also their defined attributes.

Defining the Business Process

Typically, the next step is to create a Business Process diagram to support the created Business Requirement. A business Process diagram is easier to visualize for business users rather than in a textual format.

IBM Rational DOORS NG was created using the BPMN notation which stands for Business Process Modelling Notation which is an industry-standard.

For a detailed explanation of how to create the Business Process, you can refer to my article on IBM Rational DOORS NG

Now let’s see how the Business Requirement will be traced or linked to a User Story and Test Case

Linking Requirements to a User Story and Test Case

As you are aware, IBM Rational CLM is a single integrated environment and for a single complete view traceability ensures coverage across lifecycle artifacts and also helps to find gaps, if any, with respect to delivery.

Go back to the Artifacts view (Artifacts > Browse Artifacts) and click on the folder “Features and Vision”.

To link a Requirement to the User Story which defines the functionality to be implemented from a development perspective, select the Requirement and click on “Add a Link to the Artifact > More”.


Select the Link Type as “Implemented By” and the Artifact Container as CLM_Project (Change Management) to create a new story by adding the summary and other respective attributes as shown and then click on OK.

Implemented By

Similarly, the procedure to link a Requirement to the Test Case will be defined in IBM Rational Quality Manager again, hence select the requirement and click on ‘Add a Link to the Artifact > More’.

Choose the link type as ‘Validated By’ and Artifact Container ‘CLM_Project’ (Quality Management) to create a new Test Case and give a name as shown. Then click on OK once done.

click on OK

Let’s now look at the traceability View. Click on ‘Configure Page Settings’ à “Configure Columns to Display”.

traceability View

Add the columns “Implemented By” and “Validated By” and click on OK. The traceability view is now displayed.

Add the columns

Add the columns1

The above view shows the Requirement as Implemented By a User Story item and Validated By a Test Case. This is only possible when you have an integrated tool like IBM Rational CLM.

A Closer Look at the User Story at the IBM Rational Team Concert

For the above traceability, view and click on the User Story under the “Implemented By” column.

The User Story item is now open within the CCM container as shown below.

CCM container

A few attributes for the STORY work item are to be noted very importantly = like the Story Points which define the complexity of the feature being developed, Owned By, Priority, and Planned for. Acceptance criteria can also be defined in the Acceptance TAB to confirm the completion of the Story item.

The above attributes are required for Sprint Planning from a Project Management point of view for Project Managers. In addition to the above attributes, custom attributes as per the project needs can also be added.

Project Managers managing Agile SCRUM projects are interested in creating Product Backlogs and maintaining Sprint Plans so their teams can take a look at the 2 part series available.

Creating Developer Tasks

For the Storywork item that is open, click on the Links TAB.  Since the traceability to requirements was created earlier it is just showing.

Links TAB

Now click on the “Add Related” drop down and then select “Add Children” to start creating and adding developer Tasks

Add Children

Click on the link “Create Linked Defects” and let’s change this to Task type.

Create Linked Defect

In the form that opens, change the type to Task in the drop-down.

change the type to Task

The form has now been changed to Task type, so add the details as shown below.

changed to Task type

Important attributes include Owner (usually assigned to developers), Priority, and Planned for appropriate Sprint, Planned Effort which is defined as an estimate, and Due date. In addition to these attributes custom attributes as per project, needs can also be created. Click on Save.

Please note that as the Task progresses the state workflow drop-down on the right will also need to be changed. This can be entirely customized as per our needs.

Task progress

Now click on the Parent ID (227) on the right-hand side, which will take you back to the Story item. Click on the Links TAB of the Story item to see the developer task linked and shown.

parent id11

The developer tasks created will be further linked to Source Code and then built. I will share this in a separate article.

Now since the Test Case was already created when it was linked to the requirement, it can now be added to the Story item. Click on the “Add Related” drop down and select “Add Tested by Test Case”.

Add Tested by Test Case

Select “Link to existing Test Cases”.

Link to existing Test Case

Select the Test Case that was already created earlier and then click on OK.

Select the Test Case

The traceability is now updated to show the Test Case linked.

Test Case linked

The Story item also has a workflow that can be closed once the developer tasks, defects, and test cases are done.

Test Management Using IBM Rational Quality Manager

In the above view of the Story, item clicks on the Test Case to open it to create Manual test scripts and for further testing.

Test Case

For further usage of IBM Rational Quality Manager, please look at my earlier article published at => IBM Rational Quality Manager (RQM): Complete Hands-On Guide


By reading this article you would have understood the importance of having one single ALM platform for end-to-end delivery.

I do believe from my experience that it is not easy to replace your existing delivery environment where multiple tools are being used, but I would suggest you look at moving on to a single repository environment in the near future.

To summarize, we have seen:

  • What is IBM Rational CLM
  • 3 constituents of CLM
  • Usage and best practices to be followed for the use of linking artifacts through IBM Rational DOORS NG, IBM Rational Team Concert, and IBM Rational Quality Manager

About the Author: This article was written by STH team member Niranjan. He is having 20+ years of experience in IBM Rational tools.

Next, we will be covering in-depth hands-on tutorials on IBM Tools like:

  • Requirements Management using DOORS NG
  • IBM Rational Team Concert
  • IBM Urban Code Release and Deploy

We will try and focus on diving deep into some of these features as well.

Recommended Reading

9 thoughts on “IBM Rational Collaborative Lifecycle Management (CLM) Hands-on Tutorial”

  1. Best tool but requirement linking takes time due to steps involved.

  2. wow thats greatest thing happen that CLM mixed with ALM to make it more powerful, I must enrolled to it , just to see what changes and outcome coming up

  3. Hi Luk

    Requirement linking is just one step and is easy. My next article on DOORS NG will focus on the detailed steps one should be doing as a Business Analyst.

    Feel free to contact me as well.

    V Niranjan

    • steps one should be doing as a Business Analyst??

  4. I require implementation plan for CLM. could you please provide.

  5. Hi Shivananda

    Let me know what kind of plan you need. Is it installation or usage

    V Niranjan

  6. hi.. how would you upload an word file(SRS) in to DOORS NG ,which has all the Specifications.

  7. Yes you will need to upload a word document in DOORS NG or even create a RTF doc in DOORS NG

  8. Hello Niranjan,

    I would like discuss more related to IBM Rational Doors NG. Please provide your email or phone number.



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