There are many tools and techniques available to the business analyst for a variety of tasks. One of my favorite one is the short table-style template for documenting a "Problem/Opportunity Statement" as follows:
<specify in one sentence the problem or opportunity being considered>
<specify who/what is affected by this problem>
<specify the impact of the problem or the result of the missed opportunity>
<specify what would be the benefits and positive outcomes of successfully implementing a solution>
One big issue I often encounter is that participants in many requirements workshops, JAD sessions, and other such endeavors focus only on what a successful solution would look like. These sessions become "fun" sessions where screens are designed and features are envisioned, forgetting the Why!
By the way: both business SMEs and business analysts are guilty of this!
We can't be forgetting the Why! That's not an option.
Before the business analyst engages in any solution discussions he/she must ensure they clearly understand the problem statement and who/what/how the problem impacts.
What do you think?
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