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New Post 2/3/2013 1:28 PM
User is offline Tan Huynh
3 posts
No Ranking


Advice on how build BA capability for a system integrator company 

 Hi everyone, 

First of all, thank you for clicking on this topic. 

I am recently been put in charged of a local system integrator in Vietnam as an independant senior consultant for the board of director. My role involving a development of a grand strategy to enhance the company service capability thus generating service revenue. 

The company is currently operating by reselling tier-1 vendor hardware, providing infrastructure integration service and *some* infrastructure management software integration. The company has very good connections to a lot of CIO of important customers (through hardware selling) and is currently leveraging those to bring software solution to these clients. There are software vendors who are willing to work with us to sell their solution through us to the end-users. So you see, my company is trying to evole to a business model similar to usual name like IBM Services, EDS, Accenture, Capgemini ...etc but with a more local touch. 

Many of you here are active BA and I guess the above information is not very strange to you. So I am looking for comments for my questions as of below:

a. As a software vendor, do you find that 3rd party business analyst effort is useful for your deployment to the customer (aka outsource the business analyst part to an SI) ? Why or why not ? What is the usual pitfall ?

b. Since we will have to deal with commercial-off-the-shelf product alot, is there any framework where I can systematically *compare* and analyse the gap between the COTS functionality with customer's requirement ? 

c. If I have to build a team from scratch, what sort of direction I should be looking at ? 

I have a 13 years engineering, business and alliance management backgroud and I've been researching about business analyst technique lately but i have NEVER worked as a technical business analyst (on an engineering level I mean).  What sort of difficulties that I will face ? 

Thank you very much if you can help with any comments. 

Tan

 
New Post 2/5/2013 11:47 AM
User is offline Anthony Chen
63 posts
8th Level Poster


Re: Advice on how build BA capability for a system integrator company 

 We do product management / business analysis on a consulting basis so I can definitely relate to your questions

 

a. As a consultant I find that our engagement is often useful to software vendors. Software vendors typically have an approach that is focused on the capabilities of their system and not really on the needs of the target organization. We typically do not partner with software vendors, but do work with our clients with their software vendors. My personal experience is that software vendors are incredibly bad at identifying and understanding the needs of their customers.  A systems integrator would be challenged to only do the BA part of the job because you have all these development resources that would go unused.

b. We have some information on our blog, do a google search for Seilevel COTS and a bunch of links will come up. We have developed RML - which is a visual language to model requirements. As a system we recommend understanding the business process and the business outcomes, then having software vendors walk you through how they would achieve those goals using their software. Comparing lists of features is one aspect of the process but isnt sufficient to get a good outcome. 

c. We have some articles on hiring, promoting and mentoring analysts as well as creating a business analyst center of excellence. Just search around the blog.

d. I dont think there is anything that is difficult that is unique to you. The biggest challenge that everyone faces is staying focused on the valuable outcomes. It is very easy to get caught up in individual features and automating everything to the nth degree. Scope creep/disagreement is probably the single biggest killer of projects.

 
New Post 2/7/2013 9:53 AM
User is offline Tan Huynh
3 posts
No Ranking


Re: Advice on how build BA capability for a system integrator company 

 Thank you very much for this pure gold response ! I am digging through your materials. 

 
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