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Analytical and Problem Solving Skills

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As business analysts, we are often in the fray of designing.  Whether it’s a user interface, report or data fed from one system to another; business analysts create interfaces with human beings and systems.  Our design choices impact users and other systems in a very real way.  This power can go unnoticed even in our own minds....
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Business Systems Analyst as a Career Option If you are an IT professional in India, thinking of working abroad, you might want to consider a business/systems analyst position. Why? It’s a position in high demand with high earning potential and which can serve as a great foundation for moving up the corporate ladder into management or busin...
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This entry was published on Jan 28, 2015 / Adrian M.. Posted in Analytical and Problem Solving Skills, Soft Skills, Career as a Business Systems Analyst. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
The problem: Do you know when you’re done? Given a specific project with a reasonably defined charter and clear business goals you, the business analyst, set out to elicit and document the detailed business requirements. So when do you stop? Whether you lead a team of business analysts or you do the work yourself, you probably struggled tr...
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This entry was published on Dec 03, 2014 / Adrian M.. Posted in Elicitation (BABOK KA), Analytical and Problem Solving Skills. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
 “Bring me solutions, not problems”. How often have we heard those words uttered by management? In the main it’s a sensible ask however, for a Business Analyst, quite the opposite is true. Our job is to define business problems when often we are presented with solutions. “We need a new reporting tool because the MI we receive isn’t always cor...
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This entry was published on Mar 28, 2014 / Pjbussol. Posted in Business Analysis, Analytical and Problem Solving Skills, Career as a Business Systems Analyst. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
 I keep seeing in BA skill descriptions or in specific articles that ‘negotiation skills’ are a necessity for Business Analysts. I just don’t see it myself. Negotiation is a difficult activity for many people, and I see this trend as an attempt to offload negotiation to other people… like Business Analysts. Why do I feel this way? As an activ...
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This entry was published on Sep 12, 2013 / David Wright. Posted in Business Analysis, Analytical and Problem Solving Skills, Roles and Responsibilities. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
Over last 6 years, I have come across more than hundreds of analysts and have conducted almost equal number of interviews. Over this time, I have developed a knack of differentiating best analysts from good and good analysts from bad. If you face this challenge regularly, this post might help you.   So how do you differentiate between g...
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This entry was published on Jul 13, 2013 / Kunal Jain. Posted in Business Analysis, Analytical and Problem Solving Skills, Soft Skills, Career as a Business Systems Analyst. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
In my previous posts I outlined how I was able to succeed being the first and only BA at a company and the importance of establishing trust between you and the stakeholders.   So you're the first BA at a company.   All are looking at you and thinking what can this person do for me? Good question.   What can you do f...
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  Its quite a feat of strength to pretend you don’t have any weaknesses. I don’t pretend to be that strong. Its quite a bit easier for me to look for faults, gaps, misses, short comings, imperfections and details that spell out why something is not right. Its a blessing and a curse. Looking at my deliverables in this light is second nature...
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I am working on a project where Development teams are divided into specialized areas called Centers of Competence. For example, one team works on Customer data, another team on Product data and validation, another works with the Shopping Cart, another with Checkout and so on. Requirements are gathered within each of these Centers of Competence and ...
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This entry was published on Feb 27, 2011 / Seilevel. Posted in Business Analysis Planning (BABOK KA), Business Analysis, Analytical and Problem Solving Skills, Career as a Business Systems Analyst. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
  Business Analysts often delve into business requirements, gathering, understanding and documenting business processes and functions. An analytical mind and detailed information gathering are considered to be essential; one wonders though, if industry experience is a must for good business analysis skills. After all, if you knew well the ins...
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This entry was published on Dec 06, 2010 / HSantanam. Posted in Project Management, Analytical and Problem Solving Skills, Soft Skills, Career as a Business Systems Analyst, Roles and Responsibilities. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
I know you are going to call me crazy, but I just have to let everyone know.  Machines are controlling us.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you.  You don’t believe me?  Okay, I’ll explain. People come and go in organizations.  Systems tend to stay much longer.  Simple enough right?  Here is the kicker.  When that sy...
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Being a relatively new Requirements Analyst/ Business Analyst ( BA) and being new to the industry, I have been blessed with the opportunity to have mentors. Receiving direction from more experienced BA’s has definitely helped me find areas that I can improve on, while at the same time, finding my strengths and improving those too. Yet there stil...
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This entry was published on Aug 26, 2010 / Seilevel. Posted in Analytical and Problem Solving Skills, Soft Skills, Career as a Business Systems Analyst, Getting Started as a Business Systems Analyst. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
Last year, I wrote about my Lessons from a Bad Haircut. I’m please to say I finally have a lesson from a good haircut. How did I finally get a good haircut? It was what the stylist did after I explained what I wanted. She drew a quick sketch. It took about 15 seconds. And, with that sketch, I was able to say “No, that’s not what I want.” 60 ...
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This entry was published on Aug 22, 2010 / Seilevel. Posted in Business Analysis, Analytical and Problem Solving Skills. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
One of the values that we bring is that we can help our clients to decide what scope to cut by providing them with a framework that links quantifiable business objectives to specific features. We create an objective chain to do this and it helps to spotlight features that don’t feed into the core business purpose. Typically our stakeholders are abl...
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This entry was published on Aug 17, 2010 / Seilevel. Posted in Project Management, Business Analysis, Analytical and Problem Solving Skills, Leadership & Management. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
I went to the Business Analyst World Conference in Melbourne on the 19th and 20th of July. Like last year it was a great event.  On day 1 I spent the whole day in one room (introducing speakers.) and got to listen to three very different stories. Matthew Coppola from Perth training outfit Paramount Training gave a talk on Und...
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I am all for great tools and processes that increase efficiency of work, facilitate better accuracy, allow for repeatable results, so on and so forth. But sometimes they simply do not fit.  Yes, I just said better is not always good.  Why?  Spending time trying to improve tools or processes on short turnaround projects or tasks is us...
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This entry was published on Jul 22, 2010 / Seilevel. Posted in Business Analysis, Analytical and Problem Solving Skills, Tools. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
There was recently an interesting post by John Mansour on the Austin PMM Forum (registration required) discussing whether Product Knowledge was an Asset or Liability to product managers. The author makes several claims about how product knowledge is a liability: “In a nutshell, the more product knowledge you have, the less product management yo...
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By Landerson I recently joined a new project where I will be working as the person responsible for the developing and creating the requirements and documentation on a major development effort. As the person on the hook for a significant portion of work, I need to provide accurate time estimates for my portions of the project. I was concerned about...
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This entry was published on Jun 25, 2010 / Seilevel. Posted in Business Analysis, Analytical and Problem Solving Skills, Technical Topics, Tools. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
As an analyst I almost daily have to solve some kind of problems and I bet you do also. Problems can be in different forms, but I’ve been noticing that the same pattern for finding the solution keeps coming up. I think this pattern is something essential and we use it often but i think it is a good idea to put it on paper. First, every problem has...
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This entry was published on Apr 26, 2010 / Karl. Posted in Analytical and Problem Solving Skills. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
I may be overreaching but I include risk analysis as a proper subject of systems analysis. I've done enough TRAs to justify that position—at least to myself. So here's a risk analysis topic. Toying with the idea of getting some certification I took a look at the CISSP and ISC Common Body of Knowledge.  One thing I found odd enough to exchan...
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This entry was published on Mar 07, 2010 / Marc Thibault. Posted in Analytical and Problem Solving Skills. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.


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Jarett Hailes
Jarett Hailes
As we start a new year many of us will take the time to reflect on our accomplishments from 2012 and plan our goals for 2013. We can set small or large goals. goals that will be accomplished quickly or could take several years. For 2013, I think Business Analysts should look to go beyond our traditional boundaries and set audacious goals. Merriam-...
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Howard Podeswa
Howard Podeswa
Recently, I was asked by the IIBA to present a talk at one of their chapter meetings. I am reprinting here my response to that invitation in the hope that it will begin a conversation with fellow EEPs and BAs about an area of great concern to the profession. Hi xx …. Regarding the IIBA talk, there is another issue that I am considering. It's p...
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Adrian M.
Adrian M.
Continuing the ABC series for Business Analysts, Howard Podeswa created the next installment titled "BA ABCs: “C” is for Class Diagram" as an article rather than a blog post. You can find the article here: BA ABCs: “C” is for Class Diagram Here are the previous two posts: BA ABCs: “A” is for Activity Diagram BA ABCs: “B” is for BPMN
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