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Business Analytics Online Training


A look at different viewpoints
What is being analyzed?
What’s the goal?
Current trends in business analysis
Key concepts
Reconciled to common understanding within the organization

The Role of the BA

The relationship of business analysis to project management
Differentiating between business analysis and other “analyst” roles
Customer Needs & IT Needs
The Skill Set Of A BA
The BA’s Core Knowledge Set

The Practice of Business Analysis

BA Responsibilities
Requirements Shepherding
Analysis Workflow
Dark Side Of Business Analysis
What The BA Does Not Do!
Exercise: What Are Your Challenges?

The Landscape of Requirements

Requirements, Features And Constraints
Types Of Requirements – Functional & Non-funtional
Requirements Source, Audience And Approval

Business Requirements

Establishing Project Vision And Scope
Unified Process Vision Documentation
The Vision Document Problem Statement
Example: Problem Statement
Exercise Case Study: Business Requirements
Exercise: Create A Problem Statement
Documenting Project Scope
Example: Scope Statement
Group Discussion: The Offshore Challenge

Steps in the Project/Product Lifecycle: Description, Duration, Deliverables

Conduct preliminary study
Gather requirements
Generate alternative solutions
Complete the design
Create the solution
Implement the solution
Evaluate and maintain the solution
Positioning business analysis (and the business analyst) within the project life cycle
Examining the role of the BA prior to project initiation (Diagnosing the business environment)
Group Exercise: Business Requirements Challenge

Software Development Methodologies

Water Fall Model
Spiral Methodology
Agile (more evolved, RAD session: reverse-engineer session)
RUP (Rational Unified Process)
Example Case Study

Diagnosing the Business Environment

Business problem solving
Understanding the business environment
Capturing business initiatives across the enterprise
Diagnosing a business problem or opportunity (i.e.; business initiative)
Definition of a problem
Finding and verifying true causes
The use of the problem statement
Techniques to identify business problems and causes
Workflow modeling
Fishbone Diagrams
IS—IS NOT analysis
Example Case Study
Obtaining stakeholder confirmation

Setting Goals for Business Initiatives

Using problem statement to create the goal statement
Quantifying goals – finding the “threshold of pain”
Key characteristics of well-stated goal statements
Uses the language of the business
Is measurable
Is clear
Is relevant to the overall strategy of the organization
An examination of poorly stated goals

Evaluating, Selecting, and Prioritizing Initiatives

Employing analysis techniques to assess alternatives
Using a weighted-decision model
Obtaining stakeholder confirmation

Documenting the Project Scope

How to determine the product scope
Outcome oriented development
Defining product objectives
Creating solution prototypes
Working backwards to create the solution
Specifying critical project elements and deliverables

Building a Model of the Solutio

Developing output mockups or prototypes
Identifying requirements
Creating an information model
Workflow diagrams – How to use MS – Visio
Uses in the project life-cycle
Current State (As Is)
Future State (To Be)
Establishing solution boundaries
Constructing context, overview, and detail flow diagrams
Identifying appropriate detail level
Example Case Study
Supporting documentation
Business rules
Data requirements
Use Case analysis
Confirming with stakeholders
Requirements Definition and Documentation

Identifying internal and external stakeholders
Conducting stakeholder analysis
Selecting requirements development templates
Producing a requirements development plan
verification and validation
change management
Addressing common challenges
Recognizing industry standards (IEEE, etc.)
Analysis of Requirements
Fact gathering methods
Organizing the facts
Determining requirements
Estimating the useful life of the solution
Calculating future requirements
Imposing constraints using value engineering
Establishing the concept of a solution
Managing Requirements
All Users Are Not Equal – User Attributes
Assigning User Attributes
Example: User Attributes
Exercise: Identify User Attributes
User Surrogates
When Requirements Collide: Alternative Decision-Making
How Requirements become Un-Managed
Requirements Traceability & Change Control
BA’s role in managing change
An examination of why people resist change
Recognizing symptoms of resistance
Developing coping/diffusing tactics
Group Exercise: Change Control
Interviewing Techniques
Stakeholder Analysis
Planning the interview
The art of questioning
Role of the interviewer – building confidence
The psychology of interviewing
Group Exercise: Project Improvement Facilitation

Introduction to Project Documents

Project Plan/GANTT Chart
Quality Plan
MS Excel Spreadsheets
Business Requirements Document
Technical Design Document
Example Case Study: Review of Project Documents
Introduction to SQL, Use Case Modeling & Unified Modeling Language (UML)
SQL – Basic & Advanced
What is a Use Case?
Basic Flow, Alternate Flows & Exception Flows
How Use Case Diagrams Show Relationships
The Use Case Template
Paths and Scenarios
Use Case Diagrams
Class Diagrams
Sequence Diagrams
Activity Diagrams
Introduction to Rational Suite
Rational Rose
Rational Requisite Pro
Rational Clear Case
Example Case Study: Use Case Review
Group Exercise: Develop A Class Diagram

Making the Business Case

Using creativity to create alternate solutions
Evaluating alternatives to determine feasibility
The six factors of feasibility: TRELOS
Technical: is it possible?
Weighing risks vs. benefits
Using the portfolio approach
Developing cost estimates
Calculating the return on investment
Legal: is it against the law?
Operational: will it work for us?
Schedule: can we deliver it in time?

Communicating the Solution to Stakeholders

The proposal structure
Analysis of current strengths and weaknesses
Objectives to be achieved
Description of solution
Alternatives for implementation
Explanation of recommended solutions
Costs and risks
Schedule (task plan) to achieve benefits
Supporting appendices
Preparing and making the presentation
Establishing your objective
Doing audience analysis
Organizing your ideas
Using visuals

Supporting Downstream Development

Quality Assurance and Testing
The business analyst’s role in testing
Types of tests
Use Case vs. Test Case
Key to successful tests – anticipation and reconciliation
The need
A successful style – play script
Who has responsibility
Key to user independence
Intended results
Time required
Who performs it


How can the solution be evaluated?
Who should perform an assessment?
Establishing ranges of performance
Eliminating undesirable side-effects

Positioning the Business Analyst within the Organization

Job Title or role?
Organization Structure
Reporting Relationships
Working Relationships
Tailoring the business analyst role for different projects
Getting Started

The Offshore Chal

Project Management Challenges
Challenges For The Business Analyst


For Student Assignment & Evaluation


BA Resume Prep
Interview Questions & Preparation