Join Haydn Thomas for an in-depth discussion in this video Understanding what business analysts do, part of Business Analysis Foundations: Fundamentals (2014).
- When maintaining or improving a home, having a trusted handyman that can come in and help set up, fix, or improve things whenever you need it is invaluable. In the world of projects, the business analyst is like the handyman. From the start of the project to the end, business analysts play a critical role in the success of projects and delivering outcomes. Here are the areas where you as a business analyst can place your thumbprint on a project. Your first role is to validate organization objectives.
Projects are used to create change. That change can significantly improve the abilities and efficiencies of an organization. Without any proper analysis, attempts to improve the organization can go very badly, resulting in confusion and difficulties in achieving organizational objectives. As a business analyst, you seek to understand the process strengths and the weaknesses your organization uses, and then validate any improvements to be implemented by a project.
The second role of a business analyst is to manage the requirements process in the project. To do this, you work with your organization team and gain a deep understanding of what the organization is doing today, and what will make the organization more efficient. You then capture that information using several of the following tools. Flowcharts, which provide step by step, as-is, and to-be processes. This captures what the current state of the organization is, and what the new desired state and expected outcomes will be.
User stories, which provide a picture of what people in the organization want to achieve. And lastly, context diagrams, which describe relationships between business areas, clients, and how they all fit together. We'll talk more about each of these as we go through this course. Your third role as a business analyst is to manage relevant change during the project, and this includes validating any changes proposed during the course of the project, and promoting changes the organization feels are important to fulfill their mission, and ensure that any changes that occur within the organization are properly reflected in the project's products.
And lastly, help manage changes to project deliverables that need to be made as a result of project change. When changes are introduced to a project, you need to adjust the schedule for the project and potentially the playing costs, as well as other items. With a breadth of knowledge across the project, the business analyst is well placed to help with these changes. The fourth role you take as a business analyst is managing the testing of the project's products. Projects create products that are applied to approve the position of the organization.
As a business analyst, you're typically best placed to ensure the process and technology products created by the project do what is intended, move the organization forward. As this can require significant knowledge of the people and processes involved in the organization, having you as a business analyst means the testing processes is efficient and effective. And lastly, the final role the business analyst in the project life cycle is to ensure completion criteria are accomplished. All projects should be started with the end in mind.
The project should then include detail completion criteria which detail what things need to be accomplished prior to the project being considered finished. The business analyst is typically the person who can look at the overall accomplishments made by the project and the capabilities of the processes and tools produced, and determine if those objectives were accomplished as intended. That's it. From the start of the project, then its closing. The business analyst is a great resource, ensuring everything works as intended within the projects and for the organization, the benefits from the project's products.
Discover where business analysis lives in the project life cycle, how to initiate a project, the best way to gather requirements, and smart strategies to monitor results and test outcomes.
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- Understanding what business analysts do
- Defining business opportunities and objectives
- Identifying stakeholders
- Gathering requirements through observation and brainstorming
- Validating requirements
- Developing project acceptance criteria
- Implementing, testing, and closing your project<br><br>
- The PMI Registered Education Provider logo is a registered mark of the Project Management Institute, Inc.