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New Post 11/24/2009 12:52 AM
User is offline bernard
18 posts
9th Level Poster

Enhancing Visibility of BA Role 

Hi all,

Our BA team is having a real problem and we feel our jobs are at threat. I need some pointers or ideas on how to improve the visibility and therefore our use within the business.

We are in a project team where the structure is that the head of department is a PM, his direct team is Lead PM's and then below them are standard PM's. Under on of the branches of Lead PM's there's us - 4 BA's. There's about 25 PM's.

At the moment we're not doing real analyst work. We're being used as an admin resource in projects to do things like count laptops with over 2gb RAM....All the team meetings where we meet with the PM's are focussed on purely the PM side of things.

The BA's all feel it's due to the fact that the PM's aren't what I'd call real PM's. They're people who were head of IT and their role got made redundant so were made PM's. As a result they do the work of the project themselves. They also don't understand what a BA does and what value it adds to the project.

I've asked for a slot at the next team meeting to talk with the PM's to try and gelp them get an understanding of what a BA does and how we are of value.

Can anyone suggest topics to go through? I have an interactive task to do from a previous post. But is our structure wrong (I think it is - wrong ratio of PM's to BA's and the BA's should be led by a BA, not a PM).

Are there statistics on project failure rate due to poor requirements gathering?

Should I talk about the role of PM's as well and highlight that they shouldn't actually do the tasks within a project but actually gather the resources to do the tasks for them?

If any one has any suggestions, please let me know as I could use all the help I can get right now!



New Post 11/24/2009 1:09 AM
User is offline Guy Beauchamp
257 posts
5th Level Poster

Re: Enhancing Visibility of BA Role 

Hi Bernard,

You face a great challenge!

I have a presentation on the value of business analysis including stats on reasons for project failure here.

There is also an article that discusses this in more detail here.

Hope these help and good luck (I would be really keen to learn what happens...)!


New Post 11/24/2009 11:00 AM
User is offline Craig Brown
560 posts
4th Level Poster

Re: Enhancing Visibility of BA Role 

IAG consulting have a very useful report for this type of presentation;

It may be a better tactic to take your issues to the boss as a group or individually forst.  You need 'sponsorship' to enable change.

One thing that always helps get approval to do things differently is by demonstratng value.  Can you see a current problem with requirements?  If so can you take practical steps to solve it?  By proactively solving a problem you build confidence and trust.

New Post 11/24/2009 12:30 PM
User is offline Tony Markos
493 posts
5th Level Poster

Re: Enhancing Visibility of BA Role 


Pretend that you are re-doing your hiring interview with the company.  Except that, this time, you have a much better understanding of what their requirements-related problems are.   Now answer the following question from the hiring manager:  "Why should I hire you?"  

Don't just think in terms of how a Boy Scout would answer the question: "Because I am honest, hard-working, and trustworthy."  (You would be surprised at the number of even very senior people who make this mistake.)    Instead articulate your answer in terms of how a business process is performed (where, in this case, you are the business process).    Example: I would take inputs A,B and C, do BA task X, and create outputs 1, 2, and 3. 

Now you have a sales pitch that you can make to your management.

Tony Markos

New Post 11/25/2009 12:31 AM
User is offline bernard
18 posts
9th Level Poster

Re: Enhancing Visibility of BA Role 

Many thanks for these responses, they're great!

I know I face a huge challenge, but it has to be taken on. Our projects are not what I'd deem as 'successful' (ie on time, to budget and deliver what we said we would). We have a large failure rate based on those 3.

Also, I look around the office and the 25 PM's are working constantly flat out, whereas the BA's are demanding more work as we're twiddling our thumbs! With 25 PM's and only 4 BA's that's simply not right.

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