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Although the field of IT Business Analysis offers great career opportunities for those seeking employment, some business analysis skills are essential for any adult in the business world today. For example, the task of defining the requirements for an IT solution is handed to Business Analysts as well as Subject Matter Experts, Developers, System Analysts, Product Owners, Project Managers, Line Managers, or any other business expert. Applying business analysis techniques to define their business needs results in much higher chances for a successful IT project.
In this KnowledgeKnugget™ you will learn what business analysis techniques and tools are most commonly used around the world based on surveys of actual business analysts.
This KnowledgeKnugget™ answers questions like:
1. What are the primary activities in business analysis?
2. What tools or techniques do they use?
To view more IT requirements training, visit the Business Analysis Learning Store at http://businessanalysisexperts.com/business-analysis-training-store/.
Business analysis is the process of studying a business or any other organization to identify business opportunities / problem areas and suggest potential solutions. A wide range of people with various titles, roles and responsibilities actually apply business analysis techniques within an organization.
There are three fundamentally different flavors or levels of business analysis:
1. Strategic Business Analysis (aka Enterprise Analysis) (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/strategic-business-analysis/ )
2. Tactical Business Analysis (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/tactical-business-analysis/)
3. Operational Business Analysis (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/operational-business-analysis/Operational Business Analysis)
Strategic Business Analysis is the study of business visions, goals, objectives, and strategies of an organization or an organizational unit to identify the desired future. It encompasses the analysis of existing organizational structure, policies, politics, problems, opportunities, and application architecture to build a business case for change. This analysis employs business analysis techniques such as Variance Analysis, Feasibility Analysis, Force Field Analysis, Decision Analysis, and Key Performance Indicators to support senior management in the decision-making process.
The primary outcome of this work is a set of defined, prioritized projects and initiatives that the organization will undertake to create the desired future. If the initiative includes the development of software using an Agile Software Development Methodology (SDM) (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/product/business-analysis-agile-methodologies/), strategic business analysis techniques identify themes and/or epics, and initiate a product backlog.
Tactical Business Analysis is at the project or initiative level to flush out the details of the proposed solution and to ensure that it meets the needs of the business community. Commonly used business analysis techniques at this level include Stakeholder Identification (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/product/how-to-identify-stakeholders-it-projects/), Interviewing (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/product/requirements-elicitation-gathering-business-stakeholder-it-requirements/), Facilitation (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/product/how-to-facilitate-requirements-gathering-workshops/), Baselining, Coverage Matrices, MoSCoW Analysis (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/product/requirements-prioritization-two-simple-techniques/), Benchmarking, Business Rules Analysis, Change Management, Process and Data Modeling (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/product/business-data-modeling-informational-requirements/), and Functional Decomposition (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/product/video-course-exposing-functional-and-non-functional-requirements/).
In an Agile environment, Tactical Business Analysis adds to the Product Backlog and/or Release Plans expressed in Themes, Business Epics, Architecture Epics, User Stories (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/product/video-course-writing-user-stories/), and User Story Epics. In a traditional setting, the primary outcome of Tactical Business Analysis is a set of textual and/or modeled Business and Stakeholder Requirements (http://businessanalysisexperts.com/product/video-course-writing-requirements/).
This vid is a useful survey of the variety of levels of BA functions, roles, methodologies, and tools. Much appreciated! This introduction provided info I haven't seen in most other materials I've come across. And the hat? Hey, I think it's a small reminder that we can take our work seriously without taking ourselves too seriously!
Thank you for your comment. There are no pre-requisites and definitely no "ideal path" for becoming a business analyst per se. I suggest reading my blog post at http://businessanalysisexperts.com/how-to-become-a-business-analyst/ to find out how to start at no cost.
Thank you for your question. We offer more on several of the presented techniques here on our YouTube channel. If you would like a guideline for sequencing these videos and other training we offer, please read my post at http://businessanalysisexperts.com/how-to-become-a-business-analyst/.
Great question! The best answer is, unfortunately, it depends.In the majority of larger organization the BA does not require any programming/math skills beyond those required by anyone working in the organization. The field of Business Analysis as defined by the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA) does not include any programming functions but in general we expect the BA to be "techno aware", meaning informed about what state-of-the-art IT can deliver. In organizations where developers are expected to do business analysis, their focus is naturally on the programming dimension and their business analysis skills are not as important.
In the real world, BAs are assigned a wide variety of duties, some of which may require some developer and/or math ability. In our experience, however, this is becoming increasingly rare as the majority of BAs really are primarily responsible for defining the requirements for IT Solutions.
Thank you for your comment.
+bacon9533 Interesting question! I would have to believe that business analysts do not use math any more or less than the typical white-collar worker, but that is just my opinion. I do consider basic math skills essential for anyone in today's business world.
Hi all, I thought you might be interested in this animated video on a tool that does some good stuff with capturing requirements, making sure that the whole team understands the needs and a bunch of other great things to improve test and development- http://www.agile-designer.com/resources/agile-designer/
BA EXPERTS, Tom did a great job presenting the video. I'm hoping you can (please) tell me what the "outcomes/outputs" are from the Operational Analysis level. You mentioned outputs from the Strategic (prioritized projects and initiatives) & Tactical levels (stakeholder requirements), but I must have missed the outputs from Operational.
Sorry I did not get back yet. The outputs of Operational Business Analysis are solution-level (Functional and Non-Functional} requirements. They clarify stakeholder requirements at a level of detail that developers have a much easier time coding.
Thank you for your great question.
I hope your videos are helping you attract good amount of business. You did a great job explaining complex concepts in an easy to understand manner and with a touch of humor. The accompanied visual presentation is excellent. I'm reading "Essentials of Systems Analysis & Design" 5th edition by Valacich, George and Hoffer, and without your videos, I'd be so lost. Thank you. I appreciate all the time and effort that you spent putting the videos together.
Thank you BAEXPERT for putting a clear understanding of Business Analyst Role. I have taken the BA program from the Well renown University but their concepts and definition are unclear, unorganized, difficult to comprehend for new comers.
Your way of explanation is very simple yet comprehensive, full of examples and easy to understand. It gives the bird's view to the reader and it is very effective from learning point of view.
thanks for this great video. I am currently a computer science major and business minor. I always wanted to merge business and IT. I think this could be the right path for me. I don't want to stay in the technical side forever. Instead, interchangeably use the technical and management skills.
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