Oct 17, 2021
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Industry certifications such as IIBA are proven ways to get oneself established in the industry and achieve much-aspired growth in the profession in terms of skill, visibility, personal branding, career growth, to name a few. In fact, it opens a myriad of opportunities for a business analysis professional.  This article is meant for those wishing to achieve IIBA certification on the first attempt without falling for the deadly failure traps.

Oct 10, 2021
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One of the biggest challenges now facing business analysts is this: how do we successfully engage with stakeholders, elicit requirements, and have productive workshops and meetings, without actually meeting in person? The tried-and-tested methods of getting together in a collaborative space, using sticky notes and whiteboards, and bribing attendees with baked goods, are no longer quite so straightforward in a world where some or all of the stakeholders are on the far end of an internet connection.

There are several factors to consider when moving out of the purely physical realm as a business analyst.

Oct 03, 2021
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There’s always more than one design solution for a software problem and seldom a single best solution. The first design approach you conceive won’t be the best option. As one experienced designer explained it:

You haven’t done your design job if you haven’t thought of at least three solutions, discarded all of them because they weren’t good enough, and then combined the best parts of all of them into a superior fourth solution. Sometimes, after considering three options, you realize that you don’t really understand the problem.

Sep 26, 2021
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Is your requirements approach friendly to vocabulary, policies and messages? I mean directly. Wouldn’t it be of great help to your organization in achieving its goals if they were? In our experience, policy sources almost always need interpretation and disambiguation to achieve an effective practicable form. As this column discusses, the rule message ‘Reserved for Green Car’ provides an excellent case in point.

Sep 19, 2021
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It is true that a structural element of the conceptual framework of the BABOK knowledge areas is tailoring. The philosophy that a specific sequential approach does not fit in all circumstances is clear across all the knowledge areas and techniques presented. A business analyst has to critically filter and pick up the most useful techniques and approaches given the specific circumstances.

Sep 12, 2021
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I was teaching a business analysis course recently and noted that few students had used a Fishbone Diagram along with the Five Whys for root cause analysis. This motivated me to write an article on root cause analysis using the combo method along with a short example.

Sep 06, 2021
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BPMS has evolved and has come a long way over the past one or two decades. It's quite interesting to take a peek into the BPMS journey then and now. Business needs and technology, both have gone through a huge change in the meantime.

Right since the earlier days of BPMS, I always found working in this space quite an intriguing thing. The very capability of BPM to model, design, automate, run and track any process seemed to be extremely useful.

Aug 29, 2021
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As a business analyst you will have to communicate internally and externally. Many channels and type of communication may be used. Except ensuring that all the parts have understood correctly the message as you have it in your mind, you need also to perceive what you are saying as important, correct and insightful. You need your communication effort to have impact and many times to trigger specific actions.

Aug 16, 2021
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   So, what can you do to improve your workplace culture? A possible way to start is with the notion that culture is usually local. It is impossible to change the entire organization unless you’re the CEO, and even then, it’s hard. But it is not so hard to change local culture. Your team is a good place to start.

     We said that the first driver is about the value of people. Take the people in your workgroup and have lunch together. Every day. Talk to each other and talk about your work. We know you have a daily stand-up, but that is about progress and status of the work, it is not about the value of the work and how one person might be doing something that others do not understand. You can also talk about other things, there’s plenty to talk about. The intention of these sessions is to bring the people together and for them to understand the value of each other. It also makes a group more cohesive, and thus more likely to be forgiving, and so improve the behavior towards each other.

Aug 15, 2021
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This article covers examples of how tools are becoming extremely important in today’s world for Business Systems Analysts; continuous learning and exploration of various tools are becoming indispensable to work efficiently and contribute towards the team success.  As more and more new technologies/tools arrive in the market, from a BSA perspective being able to appropriately understand and use them will not only emphasize the value of the BSA role, but also the force the change in mindset to align more towards the Agile way which is the common forte nowadays.

Aug 08, 2021
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I realized that this is something that we business analysts need to constantly show the value add of a business analyst to the project sponsor / client.  Business analyst as a role exists to solve business problems, create a positive change, design and describe solutions that deliver value and enhance the return on investment.  Following are 10 definite ways Business Analysts add value to their organizations.      

Aug 02, 2021
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     Designing a new product is a messy process. It involves initial brainstorming, rough concepts, false starts, and extensive refinement. Good designs begin with an identified need or opportunity, and they’re based on a solid understanding of the product’s requirements. No matter how skilled the requirements analyst is or how informed and cooperative the customer participants are, the first set of requirements they develop will be only approximately correct. It takes a process of iterative refinement and validation to accurately understand the requirements for any nontrivial product.

Jul 26, 2021
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Studying for your IIBA certification (CBAP, CCBA, or ECBA) can be a rigorous but ultimately fulfilling experience. But there is nothing worse than putting in all that time, work, and commitment and then FAILING the actual exam. Several disappointed candidates have sought guidance from me, unfortunately, after failing their first attempt at the exam. Before moving forward with these candidates, the first thing I do is get an understanding of the steps they previously took to study for the exam. This not only helps me get a baseline of how I can help them, but it also serves as inputs for how I can build courses and study tools that address these issues. So, to help you increase your chances of passing your IIBA exam on your first attempt, here are some of the top reasons people fail their IIBA exam.

Jul 18, 2021
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With the massive shift to working from home we now see a plethora of tech companies flogging new employee surveillance tools. You can readily see their appeal to command-and-control thinkers. If you think, as they do, that managing employee activity is crucial, then to know who’s doing things and who’s taking the mickey is grist to their mill. But these tools will undermine performance and morale.

Think about it from the employee’s point of view. Your boss can see your emails, any documents you read or create, your appointments, who you talk to, and when; can listen to or read transcriptions of your calls. Your boss can see your computer screen, can monitor your internet use, the sites you visit and for how long. Your boss can even turn on your camera and watch you at work.

Jul 11, 2021
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Product configuration requirements are a specialized type of requirement when an information system supports product-related needs through data values. Where there are specific changes to business processes needed to sell and/or operate a new product, the requirements for the information system to support activities within those processes involve standard functional requirements.

Whether an information system can support a product though configuration or requires custom development, when an information system is involved there are standard pre-go-live activities that need to be performed (e.g. testing). Requirements support those activities.

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