General Business Analysis

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I have had the opportunity in my career to move, not only, from industry to industry, but from company to company. I have been a consultant as well as a full time employee throughout my career. As companies merge and/or begin to grow talent is needed and could come from anywhere. New/outside talent can bring in fresh wave of diverse perspectives and ideas. However, there should be some caution taken, if you are that new person entering into the organization. Whether you are a consultant, temporary employee or full time employee, here are 5 pitfalls that I have found in my career that can either make you or break you as you enter into new companies.
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If you are looking for a specific decision to be made on a specific issue or capability, then getting the meeting down to a small core team is important in order to ensure the decision is being made quickly. This is where Minimally Viable People comes into the picture. Minimally Viable People is the concept that a small group performs better by making decisions with higher quality while being representative of the larger group.
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I’ve been a Business Analyst for about 15 years now starting as a graduate back in the day. And while I do not consider that to be close to a career’s worth of experience I have certainly seen significant changes in the way business analysis is performed and the tools that are used thanks to the evolution of technology.
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Every software team talks about project scope and team members often complain about unending scope creep. Unfortunately, the software industry lacks uniform definitions of these terms, and the requirements literature is short on clear guidance regarding how to even represent scope. I confront scope head-on in this series of three articles...
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Bias is seen in action through bad decisions, miscommunication, perceptual blindness, and alienation of groups with diverse thought. Here’s what the dictionary says about bias: “A preference or an inclination, especially one that inhibits impartial judgment.”
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Do we “on board” new project team members? In today’s busy organizations individuals are shuffled around all the time being assigned and unassigned almost daily to projects. We employ the “sink or swim” mentality. New person it’s your job to figure it out and get it done.
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Many skilled individuals do ask themselves: “How can I be sure, that I am doing well?” Especially in the business analysis sphere, the criteria of a quality job may be vague or only partly relevant.

In reality, what many people do is try to measure the quality of business analysis work through analyzing some aspects of BA artifacts they produce.
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You finally did it. You figured out the real business problem your project is meant to solve, and identified a solution that is far superior than the originally proposed. Now you just need to get buy-in from the project sponsor so the delivery team can alter their plans and set out to build the higher-value solution you devised. But there is one problem: the project sponsor was deeply involved in identifying the original solution and nurturing it. It’s his baby… and if you say it needs to be overhauled, you are basically saying his baby is ugly. Now what? How do you make sure your news aren’t received as an insult, and dismissed with defensiveness by the decision-maker?
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Discovery of real needs is the responsibility of the business analyst. Choosing the optimal solution is usually the responsibility of the stakeholders. Working together, both parties can ensure that they are providing the maximum business value.
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Follow this script at the beginning of your requirements discovery process, and you should see visible results in terms of the quality of your solution requirements. This checklist will help you anchor any and all discussions about features and designs on how they will help your customers achieve their desired outcomes and benefits. It will also allow you to define a valuable, usable, and feasible solution without having to rely on your customers being able to describe it for you.
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I am constantly coming across alleged ‘business analysts’, many new to the industry, sauntering confidently into a project or an organization. Typically, the first thing they do when assigned requirements elicitation is organize a workshop. These people are engaging, charming, energetic, and, in many cases, evangelistic. They are very adept at gaining the undivided attention of their audience.  However, their primary and, in most cases, their only concern is determining what the client wants and what the problem is without a thought to a workable action plan to improve anything. 

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I selected a topic, in this case Business Process Management, and then developed an initial outline of talking points for the webinar. I then iteratively build a slide deck with text that explains the ideas and images that stimulate the imagination on the concepts. With the slides done, I develop formal text on each slide along with estimated delivery time. This is what I called my baseline deck for the presentation.

Detect language » Hungarian
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This is the story of an outsourced contract for development involving a Financial Services Company (BigNameCo) and an Outsourcing company (ServCo). It appeared to be a simple development project, but in the process, the CIO was fired!
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The Top 10 Trends in Business Analysis for 2016 examines the evolving ways in which BA practitioners can help organizations realize better business value and the shifts needed within the BA discipline to achieve it. The 2016 trends highlight BAs evolution from “order taker and liaison” between stakeholders to an increased focus on being an “agent of change”, and communicating and collaborating about much more than requirements.

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Customer journey mapping is a great way to understand your customer intimately to provide insights into providing targeted customer experience that empower the customer positively to drive better business outcomes.  This technique places the customer first with a deep emotional understanding, then looks backwards toward the experiences provided by the operating model, thus enabling good aspects to be reinforced and negative ones to be managed. It provides a complete 360 end to end experience of the customer to be realized driving customer insights, allowing more blue sky approaches to offsetting emotional deficits...

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