The Community Blog for Business Analysts

Warnier diagrams are not well known. They were introduced in the age of Structured Systems Analysis and are now forgotten. However they are the best tool for solving complex problems. Sometimes you need to model complex logic with multiple different exception scenarios. Sometimes you need to come up with requirements for complex functionality like ...
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This entry was published on May 23, 2014 / Łukasz Pasek. Posted in Structured Systems Analysis (DFDs, ERDs, etc.). Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
(Image credit: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/14918242487402982/)   Tired of holding those long and boring meetings with your analysts and stakeholders to encourage them to come up with new ideas and strategies for your business? It seems more of drudgery than a productive exercise when you find yourself lecturing your team for hours on end to...
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This entry was published on Apr 01, 2014 / Frank Pipolo. Posted in Business Analysis Planning (BABOK KA). 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.
This is one of the most frequently asked questions I have encountered ever since I have started training business analysts. Before exploring ‘how’, one should ask ‘why do I want to become a business analyst?’ Is it just because every talented individual want to do it, or you want better opportunity, or for better salary. In my opinion, if you have...
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This entry was published on Mar 05, 2014 / Trividh Patel, CBAP. Posted in Interviewing & Hiring Business Systems Analysts, Getting Started as a Business Systems Analyst. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
Sign-offs are a sign that stakeholders agree with and approve the requirements that have been elicited and documented. There are multiple reasons why BAs seek stakeholder sign-offs and in some cases, it is not always clear whom it benefits. While some methodologies like Agile do not involve a formal sign-off, requirements sign-off does add va...
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This entry was published on Feb 28, 2014 / Stephanie Famuyide. Posted in Requirements Management and Communication (BABOK KA). Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
The word “Agile”, there was a time when this word referred to the ability to move quickly, easily in a more tangible sense, and associated perfectly with synonyms like ‘nimble’, ‘acrobatic’, ‘light footed’, and it goes on and on. Now in the context of software development the word Agile seemed to have gained new depths. Very much like the word “T...
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This entry was published on Jan 05, 2014 / Victoria. Posted in Agile Methods. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
A few years ago, I had shifted with bag and baggage to the US. I thought that the upcoming project would consume me for at least a couple of years. Alas, that was not the case. I returned home in five months. Well, I don't even want to begin to think about the financial and emotional set back that my family and I had to endure! Why did this happen...
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This entry was published on Dec 23, 2013 / Praveen Udupa. Posted in Soft Skills, Leadership & Management. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
I arrived at the coffee shop for a discussion with my financial planner. Well, I intended to still evaluate him, so he was technically not yet “my” financial planner.  He was “a” financial planner. After the initial pleasantries, he began with a monologue on financial prudence and various product categories that I ...
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This entry was published on Dec 22, 2013 / Praveen Udupa. Posted in Business Analysis. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
“So, what do you do?”  It’s quite probably the question I most dread being asked. It’s a fairly benign question but as a Business Analyst I feel compelled to assess and understand what I am really being asked before attempting to provide an appropriately pitched response to my inquisitor. I find myself scrambling for the right words whilst my ...
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 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.
“Who is the project manger?” “Who is the developer?” “What is a business analyst?” I received a business card at an Agile event one time, and I wish I could find the card or remember the gentleman’s name to give proper credit, but he listed his title as Agile Evangelist. If the role of business analyst is new to your company, and sometimes even if ...
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This entry was published on Aug 28, 2013 / Russell Brewer. Posted in Business Analysis. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
Many large organizations have adopted a gated approach to reduce new product development (NPD) risk. One of the key features of such an approach is a set of “go/no-go” decision gates which, in principle, ensures that each project remains aligned with its original strategic intent and its value remains high enough to justify its continuation to the ...
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This entry was published on Aug 19, 2013 / ccecere. Posted in Project Management, Business Analysis. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
Developing requirements is a process with many moving parts. It involves aligning multiple stakeholders from different areas within an organization to determine what must be developed to fulfill a business need.  Because it is a process, there are a number of factors that can cause the process to break down and lead to the development of fault...
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This entry was published on Aug 07, 2013 / Ken Young. Posted in Requirements Analysis (BABOK KA) , Requirements Management and Communication (BABOK KA), Functional Specifications, Business Analysis. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
Don’t you love clichés? I am sure your immediate thought when you read the title of this post was “Yet another blog telling me I need to listen more”. You’re probably right about half of it, you probably do need to listen more. We all need to listen more. But this thought doesn’t deal with the art of listening; it deals with a completely different ...
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This entry was published on Jul 29, 2013 / Russell Brewer. Posted in Business Analysis, Soft Skills. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
Would you like to be perceived as effective? Want to succeed? Make sure you follow up.   As a BA you are involved in several initiatives at different stages of development.  What separates an average professional from an exceptional one is following up on tasks assigned to others on your projects. I'm too busy,...
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This entry was published on Jul 18, 2013 / Lee Grinberg, CBAP, PMP. Posted in Business Analysis, Soft Skills, Leadership & Management, Career as a Business Systems Analyst, Getting Started as a Business Systems Analyst. 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 the BABOK, an entire section is dedicated to stakeholder analysis (version 2.0 section 2.2). The first element of stakeholder analysis as defined in the BABOK is the identification of stakeholders. It stands to reason therefore that if we as business analysts fail at the building block of stakeholder identification, then we are putting the proce...
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This entry was published on Jun 28, 2013 / Russell Brewer. Posted in Business Analysis. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
You might think I am crazy for wondering if Indiana Jones might be a good business analyst. Even though Indiana Jones is portrayed in the movies as a treasure hunter, he was really an archaeologist first. So what skills do archaeology and business analysis have in common? I don’t think I would have been able to draw a parallel betwee...
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This entry was published on Jun 24, 2013 / Dean J. Chapman. Posted in Business Analysis, Roles and Responsibilities. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
Hi all, I have recently co-authored a new book on using Axure RP ("A Beginner's Guide to Axure 6.5"), and would like to hear from BAs/UXers/Interaction Designers who would be interested in writing an independent Amazon store review for the book, in exchange for a complimentary kindle copy. Please contact me at annaroosen@gmail.com. Amazon link: h...
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This entry was published on Jun 24, 2013 / Anna Roosen. Posted in User Interface & Usability, Tools. 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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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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