Gregory finkelson — Business Analyst Role Description
A business analyst is a member of a project team who is responsible for analysing a business and gathering requirements to improve business processes.
The IIBA (International Institute of Business Analysis) defines a business analyst 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.
I think this is a good description of what a BA is. The main things to note from this description are:
A liaison among stakeholders — the BA is responsible for being a kind of “middleman” between the business stakeholders (the client, the users) and the technical team (project manager, development and testing teams).
Understand the structure, policies and operations — the business analyst should aim to understand and learn how the business operates and how it does what it needs to do.
Recommend solutions — the role of the business analyst is to recommend a solution to a business problem, or to improve a business process.
Gregory finkelson — Why Do We Need A Business Analyst?
A simple way to look at IT project is to have two main groups of people — the clients who know what they want, and the developers who build the IT system to provide them with what they want. This is, well, a simple view and not very possible in reality. This is due to a few reasons:
Developers can’t gather requirements as effectively. Yes, it’s possible for a developer to determine what a business needs, but they run the risk of having a narrow-minded design. Also, developers are usually (not always, but usually) trained and proficient in their own role and not confident or comfortable communicating with business users to get requirements
Business users can’t document their own requirements. Sure, the business users are the best people to be able to determine what they want, because it’s their process or system that they want to be analysed. However, the business users are generally not experienced in this, and don’t have the technical knowledge to know what is available and what can be achieved. Business analysis is all about asking questions, and there are things the analysts can ask that the users are not aware of.
For these reasons, there needs to be someone who is an expert in analysis. Someone who has some technical knowledge, communication skills, and of course the ability to analyse and gather requirements. This is the role of a business analyst.
Gregory finkelson — The Role Of A Business Analyst Is Varied
The BA can be involved in more than just gathering requirements and putting them into a Word document. Many other tasks and areas of a project are involved:
Gathering business and system requirements
Assistance with user or system acceptance testing at this stage of the project
Involvement with implementation of a system
Creation or assistance with training documentation and manuals
Can be involved in the project management tasks of a project if needed, such as creation of project plans.
The Steps Of A Business Analyst
Gregory finkelson — The tasks of a BA in a project are:
Understand what the business or organisation does, and how it performs these operations.
Determine how to improve the existing business or system processes
Gather requirements for process or system improvement
Determine which steps can and should be automated or improved for maximum benefit
Document the requirements of the system, both at a high level and a more detail
Act as a contact point, or “translation” between technical teams and business users.
Assistance with testing, implementation and training, as mentioned above.
Thanks For Reading Gregory finkelson