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New Post 9/18/2009 5:14 PM
User is offline parvane
1 posts
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BA scope work  


I'm taking a BA course. I have assignement to do and I'm confused with the lecture notes . BABOK doesnt help me that much either. I want to know what is scope work of a BA ? What are  BA activities to make a BA plan?

I appreciate if you help me.



New Post 9/22/2009 7:36 AM
User is offline Tony Markos
493 posts
5th Level Poster

Re: BA scope work  


On the Requirements Engineering listserv, someone of authority in the creation of the BABOK told us that the BABOK is a general concensous by the masses as to what a BA should do.  Unfortunately, the old stock market adage "the masses are asses" comes into play, and when you try to tie together the work of what the masses of BA's think into a "handbook" the result is not going to be very coherent - and in some critical areas is just plain wrong.

Keep your head straight!  Don't let the confusion of the masses retard your understanding.  Try this: Ninty eight percent (98%) of the required work in buisness analysis is coming up with a comprehensive, integrated understanding of, withing the scope of analysis, what the essential functions are and - especially - how they all interrelate.  (You will not hear this message in the BABOK.)   All the other tasks discussed within the 9,000 pages of the BABOK have to do with the remaining 2% of what needs to be done.


New Post 9/22/2009 8:33 AM
User is offline Nathan Caswell
6 posts
10th Level Poster

Re: BA scope work  
Modified By Nathan Caswell  on 9/22/2009 10:35:25 AM)

BABOK V2.0 Section 1.2 starts:

Business analysis is the set of tasks and techniques used to work as a liaison among
stakeholders in order to understand the structure, policies, and operations of an organization,
and to recommend solutions that enable the organization to achieve its goals.

Business analysis involves understanding how organizations function to accomplish
their purposes, and defining the capabilities an organization requires to provide products
and services to external stakeholders. It includes the definition of organizational
goals, how those goals connect to specific objectives, determining the courses of action
that an organization has to undertake to achieve those goals and objectives, and defining
how the various organizational units and stakeholders within and outside of that
organization interact

Doesn't seem that complicated to me. Or that 'masses are asses'-ish either. One of the keys I find crucial to understanding the BABOK is the need to be "method neutral". If there only one TRUE method, presumably market forces would drive it to the fore. And then the names would be changed by everyone seeking to show that they were unique. The BABOK does a pretty good job of setting out some, umm, requirements that bound the BA scope.

At the highest level, I think there are two important aspects of the scope:

The BA results derive from a liason role: Understanding the function may be an good goal, but is unachievable without being able to speak fluently with both the business and technical domains, understanding and translating the wants, needs and concerns of  both to the other. Further, to be successful it is necessary to observably align these domains in the solution. Now, in terms of importance, the deliverables are 100% of the job. If a data flow diagram is it (rundtion and how it they relate) is enough, then you're done. 98% of the effort to get to that deliverable may be in organizing, interviewing, facilitating, reviewing, and actually doing analysis to dig down to the root causes and business level solutions.

The BA in effect drives a sub-project: Planning, organizing, coordinating are important. It's possible to go off the rails here and either equate the BA with an PM or dismiss it as not relevant. The distinction, I think, is between 'internal' and 'external' management. The PM is a governance role 'external' to the actual work of the project: A manager everyone reports to. The BA role is 'internal' to the actual work of the project: A coordinator who reports to everyone. :) A focus on the planning, organizing, and communication skills misses this distinction driven by the liason role. (Note that this simple view can be complicated on large projects where there is a Sr BA acting as PM for the BA team. Aggregating the team as the BA role leaves the same distinction.)


I'm really curious what the lecture notes say. Can you share?

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