Business Analysis Articles

Nov 19, 2017
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Imagine that a business analyst has been assigned to write the requirements for a new system replacing the company’s legacy CRM (customer relationship management application). After mapping out the as-is process at a high-level, the BA’s stress level starts to go up. “There are th...
Imagine that a business analyst has been assigned to write the requirements for a new system replacing the company’s legacy CRM (customer relationship management application)...
A BA walks into an elevator, is joined by an executive, and suddenly the executive asks the BA, “So, what are you working on these days?” (Sounds like the start of a jo...
Agile Manifesto is a means to achieve the end objective through ‘best practices’ that crystallize into an approach that efficiently resolves the competitive stand-off. ...

Latest Articles

Apr 23, 2017
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A good business definition is not only good because it is clear and concise, but because it holds a clear, exclusive position within its full set of peers – i.e., the glossary for your business vocabulary. This discussion outlines five basic guidelines for ensuring the quality of a glossary holistically, focusing on avoiding naming anomalies, subtle redundancies, and avoiding circularities. Find out how you can become world-class at communicating the meaning of your business concepts. Part of the secret is a clear focus on seed concepts.
Apr 17, 2017
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We hit a challenge however when we attempt to promote the value of Business Analysis to IT Management or the Business...  The reality is that simply promoting “better requirements” does not sell our value-add in terms that management from an IT or Business perspective understands... So how do we do this? Let me share five lessons learned based on my experience as a senior requirements management consultant. 

Apr 10, 2017
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The paradigm shift towards agile and lean product development has brought collaboration between large cross-functional team in the spotlight. The existing literature is already mature explaining clearly how benefits can be reaped fast by executing a clean transition to agile delivery by enhancing the performance of the new cross-functional teams. However, in parallel, the time spent in endless meetings by product owners, business analysts, engineers, product managers and many others involved in the product creation, has grown exponentially. This leaves key product people with little or no time to do the critical activities they are employed for.
Apr 02, 2017
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You see, I am a business analyst (BA), and more precisely the lesser-spotted, lazy beta alpha, the evolutionary pinnacle of my profession, at the tip of the BA spear. While the work of throwing or stabbing with the spear requires an effort by the arm that wields it, I prefer the sharp bit to do the work for me. In other words, doing as little as possible apart from…well, being sharp. While the sharp bit does all the work I am able to still the get the glory and recognition of a job well done. While the spear tossers return with painful shoulders, weary and, hopefully sometimes with a degree of success.
Mar 29, 2017
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A common challenge of enterprise Business Analysts is the discovery, understanding, and description of requirements in the context of implementing packaged solutions. Management assigns us to projects with a predefined solution, and we struggle to figure our role when there seems to be no significant build activity. What are we supposed to do in this situation when there seems to be no need to produce standard requirement deliverables?

 

Put a typical Business Analyst in this environment and do not be surprised to hear the phrase “I’m not sure of my role.” Why do packaged solution projects cause discomfort?

Mar 26, 2017
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There are various schools of thought about how to define terms, some arising from professional terminologists and academia. But those approaches are often relatively arcane and not well-suited to everyday business practice.

Definitions with subtle IT or ‘data’ bias are an anathema to effective communication with business partners. Good business definitions are oriented to what words mean when used by real business people talking directly about real business things.
Mar 23, 2017
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Watching the speed by which Information Technology (I.T.) has changed over the last forty years has been amazing. Hardly a day goes by without some new twist or invention. In particular, my interest is in how I.T. can be applied to support the systems needed to operate a business, such as for manufacturing, inventory, order processing, customer service, accounting, human resources, and much more. I have seen a lot during the last four decades, perhaps too much.
Mar 22, 2017
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When asked what my secret for Business Analysis success is, I indicate fundamentals first. You can acquire skills related to Agile, the latest modeling language, and software development tools but you will fail if you have not mastered fundamentals.   The following fundamentals are crucial to success...
Mar 19, 2017
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A business analyst is a person who analyzes, organizes, explores, scrutinizes and investigates an organization and documents its business and also assesses the business model and integrates the whole organization with modern technology. The Business Analyst role is mostly about documenting, verifying, recording and gathering the business requirements and its role is mostly associated with the information technology industry.

Mar 13, 2017
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Through the use of contract terms and conditions, this article provides insight on managing risk on outsourced projects beyond just transferring work to a contractor. Training courses on risk management typically cover transferring risk at a high level, but that is just a start. Read this article for the follow-ups on managing risk via contract terms and conditions.
Mar 09, 2017
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My inclination is the smarter and harder approach but again I am asking you to contribute your thoughts. Channel your inner Justin Timberlake and consider how do we get sexy back to Business Analysis? How do we get the attention of the decision makers when we are no longer the shiny new product that every one wants.
Mar 06, 2017
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Congratulations! You have been asked to act as the lead Business Analyst (LBA) on an important project. It is more than likely someone recognizes the good work that you have done in the past and their hope is that your past success can be replicated with multiple Business Analysts on this new initiative. Like any new experience, you may have some anxiety or nervousness regarding this new role. It is important to you that what happens turns out to be a future success story and not an experience that stays in the closet.
Feb 26, 2017
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Consider an agile project on the other hand. Agile projects do not require massive documentation in advance. Moreover, in agile projects, the business owner might communicate directly with the agile team (developers) and sometimes the agile teams are even co-located, which makes the communication between business owner and agile team easier.

So, there is no role of a Business Analyst in agile projects you say!
Feb 20, 2017
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There’s a high premium on knowing how to craft great definitions. Every business analyst should know how. To get you started, here are some basic criteria for great business definitions:

  • It should be easy to give examples for the thing defined, but there should be no counterexamples.
  • Each definition should communicate the essence of what a thing is, not what it does, how it’s used, or why it’s important.
  • The definition of a thing should focus on its unique characteristics.
  • Each thing you define should be distinguishable from every other thing you define using the definition alone.
  • Each definition should be concise and as short as possible without loss of meaning. A definition should be readable.
Feb 11, 2017
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This is the time for the BA community to expand its capabilities and provide critical value to the organization. With a massive 86% of global CEOs reporting a lack of time to think strategically about the forces of disruption and innovation shaping their company’s future, businesses leaders must lean on the evolving capabilities of the business analysis community.
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