Essential Skills for Business Analysis

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Essential Skills for Business Analysis
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Introduction

This course provides a broad set of knowledge, tools and techniques to be used in Business Analysis in companies, based on internationally recognized good practices, aligned with the BABOK® guide of the IIBA® (International Institute for Business Analysis).

Essential Skills for Business Analysis teaches the fundamentals of business analysis to professionals, experienced or not. The workshops, conducted by the tutor, allow students to practice the techniques as they learn them. Depending on the level of knowledge of the participants, the cases and discussions of the workshops facilitate the understanding of the teachings at all levels of experience.

The business analyst skills covered in this course are applicable whether analysis is performed in an agile or more traditional plan-driven approach. This is the perfect course for those new to business analysis, to level set analysts across the organization, or for senior analysts needing to refresh their business analyst skill set. It supports the IIBA BABOK industry standards and PMI’s PBA certification and is an excellent class for individuals seeking certification.

Objectives

At the end of this course students will be able to:

  • Define business analysis and requirements
  • Elicit requirements from stakeholders using a variety of effective techniques
  • Practice creative thinking skills to engage stakeholders, uncover needs, and identify new approaches and ideas
  • Compare and contrast analysis techniques in order to select the technique(s) that will most appropriately:
    • support your understanding, critical thinking and problem solving
    • communicate information to stakeholders to enable review and their understanding of requirements
  • Reduce confusion and development errors by creating excellent requirements that can be easily understood by outsourced or distributed teams
  • Get the most out of your models and diagrams by asking the right questions during analysis
  • Identify why the project is being done (business drivers) in order to ensure the right analysis effort is being performed and so that requirements efforts can be appropriately prioritized
  • Create a context data flow diagram to identify interfaces, data flows, and high-level processes associated with the project, that is valuable both for planning and communications purposes
  • Discuss strategies for content organization and collaboration, and describe why being more organized increases team agility
  • Practice creating an analysis approach to make the most efficient use of elicitation and analysis techniques
  • Learn to address common barriers that face project teams

Is this course for you?

Not sure if this course is a good fit for your needs? Take our self-assessment!

Student Profile

This course has been designed for business analysts, project managers, business systems analysts and systems architects or any other member of a project team involved in the analysis. It is aimed at people who manage or participate in projects.

Prerequisites

There are no pre-requisites to attend this course.

Course Materials

Each student will receive a copy of the course documentation prepared by Netmind.

Methodology

Engaging and interactive face-to-face course. Our instructors teach all course materials using the demonstrative method; the participants learn new concepts through exercises and real application practices.

Highly interactive exercises provide students opportunities to practice and reinforce the techniques and business analysis skills taught during class. Regardless of the participant’s skill level, the workshop cases and discussions inspire learning insights for every level of experience.

Students are encouraged to bring projects into class for exercises and to develop a more personalized post-class action plan to take their project to the next step.

Accreditation

A certificate of attendance will be issued to students who attend the course for at least 75% of the duration.

Certification

This course is included in our Business Analysis Certification Program. At the core, we believe all analysts, regardless of their environment, project type, or development approach, should possess the foundational skills covered in this course. Therefore, this class has been incorporated into our program at all levels.

By attending this course, students earn credit towards the BA Associate and BA Certified certifications, as well as credit towards all badges in our BA Certification Program.

Additionally, students will earn 28 credit hours for their attendance.

Course Outline

  1. Introduction
    1. Define business analysis
    2. Discuss what requirements are and how they are utilized in analysis
    3. Describe requirements elicitation and techniques available
  2. Putting Requirements Elicitation into Practice
    1. Describe how to use 11 different elicitation techniques to understand stakeholder requirements: Document Analysis, Observation, Interviews, Surveys and Questionnaires, Requirements Workshops, Brainstorming, Focus Groups, Interface Analysis, Data Mining, Mind Mapping, Benchmarking and Market Analysis
    2. Improve your elicitation skills by:
      1. Practicing several elicitation techniques
      2. Utilizing active listening techniques
      3. Enhancing critical thinking skills
      4. Using various techniques for increased brainstorming results
    3. Choose the appropriate technique(s) for your project
  3. Getting the Most Out of Elicitation
    1. Describe the considerations for planning elicitation
    2. Choose the most appropriate elicitation technique(s)
    3. Ensure the right people are involved in elicitation activities
    4. Validate your elicitation results
    5. Manage Conflict
    6. Confirm stakeholders have a shared understanding of requirements
  4. Introduction to Scoping
    1. Define solution scope and explain its applicability and purpose
    2. Differentiate between solution scope and project scope
    3. Identify the components of scope and explain the purpose of a business requirements document
    4. Describe the value of scoping your area of analysis
  5. Define Project Context and Purpose
    1. Survey the Project
      1. Explain how to assess a project within the larger context of the enterprise
      2. Identify the documents and information valuable to establishing project context
    2. Describe Project Purpose
      1. Differentiate business drivers from problem solutions
      2. Study problems and opportunities in the organization
      3. Clearly state business objectives
      4. Define project approach
      5. Compose a well-defined problem statement
      6. Construct a project glossary and illustrate its value
  6. Depict Other Key Scope Parameters
    1. Distinguish and express key scope parameters and explain their importance
      1.  Risks
      2.  Assumptions
      3. Constraints
      4. Dependencies
    2. Plan for detailed scope elicitation
  7. Scope Your Area of Analysis
    1. Express scope with graphical representation
      1. Illustrate components of graphical scope & order of definition
      2. Identify external agents
      3. Analyze and Identify data flows
      4. Distinguish project boundary
      5. Formulate purpose-driven name
    2. Complete scope with text documentation
      1. Detect stakeholders from scope context
      2. Analyze scope parameters for impacts on analysis planning
  8. Finalizing Scope
    1. Evaluate and prepare scoping results
      1. Indicate newly identified project information
      2. Identify important actions performing a final quality check
      3. Produce formal context DFD (scope diagram)
    2. Validate Scope with Stakeholders
      1. Explain process of validating your area of analysis
      2. Describe considerations when planning communications about scope and impacts
      3. Explain the importance and describe an approach to gaining stakeholder agreement on scope
    3. Baseline the scope
      1. Define a baseline
      2. Describe the value and purpose of baselining the results of the scoping effort
    4. Describe next steps for business analysis after scoping
      1. Identify the transition to requirements management
      2. Identify options for requirements analysis and elicitation
      3. Explain how scope is used throughout the project
  9. Introduction to Requirements Analysis Techniques
    1. Describe requirements and the importance of requirements analysis
    2. Provide guidance on how requirements analysis techniques are applicable within any methodology
    3. Compare and contrast the requirements analysis perspectives: what vs how and AS IS vs TO BE
  10. Breaking Down Requirements into Core Components
    1. Define the four core components that make up all requirements
      1. Data
      2. Process
      3. External Agent/Actor
      4. Business Rules
    2. Describe what the core components represent
    3. Identify the importance of core components to your audience
  11. Using Analysis Techniques to Your Advantage
    1. Describe how particular analysis techniques:
      1. Drive quality analysis
      2. Communicate requirements perspectives effectively
    2. Go beyond documenting requirements solely with text – describe how diagrams and models can also be used for analysis
    3. Compare and contrast the different requirements analysis techniques when preparing to communicate with your audience
      1. Context Data Flow Diagram
      2. Decomposition Diagram
      3. Entity Relationship Diagram
      4.  Glossary
      5. Decision Tables and Decision Models
      6. Flowcharts
      7. Use Case Modeling
      8. User Stories
      9. Prototyping
    4. Create the right analysis approach based on your stakeholder’s learning style
    5. Confirm the analyzed requirements with stakeholder
  12. Developing an Analysis Approach
    1. Review elicitation and analysis techniques
    2. Workshop – What is your Analysis Approach?
      1. Work in groups to select techniques and determine your approach to a given case study (Students may use their projects)
      2. Rate your outcome with the Analysis Checklist provided
      3. Revise your approach as needed and present
    3. Discuss success criteria for an analysis approach to getting started and/or moving your project forward
    4. Discuss why you chose each particular elicitation and analysis technique in your approach
    5. Define Excellent Requirements characteristics
    6. Requirements Management: Organize and capture requirements
      1. Describe why being more organized increases team agility
      2. Distinguish the different levels of requirements categories and explain their area of focus
      3. Describe the different kinds of requirements information that needs to be included in your requirements repository
      4. Compare and contrast approaches for effectively organizing, filtering and reporting your requirements-related content
  13. Swimming with the Sharks
    1. Workshop – Swimming with the Sharks
      1. Work in groups to create an approach for overcoming real world obstacles that effect projects
      2. Describe key strategies for having difficult conversations with SMEs and maneuvering through office politics
      3. Describe options for increased stakeholder engagement with a Quick Tip job aid
      4. Discuss approaches to resolve conflicting needs, including prioritization options
      5. Define methods for performing traceability and impact analysis
  14. Course Summary
    1. Bringing it all together
    2. Develop an Action Plan with next steps on the student’s current project
  15. Appendix – Job Aids (Optional)
    1. Elicitation Techniques – What, When & How
    2. Elicitation Planning Worksheets
    3. Tips for Ensuring Quality in the Context DFD
    4. Risk Responses and Planning
    5. Considerations for Analysis Checklist
    6. Quick Tips: Stakeholder Engagement
  16. Appendix – Overview of Application Development Methodologies (Optional)
    1. Discuss various methodologies for application development and their history
    2. Learn which models are used in each methodology:
      1. Waterfall, Agile, Iterative, Prototyping, Incremental Development, Spiral/RUP, RAD, Extreme Programming (XP), Object Oriented Methodologies, IDEF
      2. Discuss what requirements are and how they are utilized in analysis
      3. Define business analysis

Public Classes

Dec 2, 2019 - Dec 5, 2019
8:30 - 4:30 EST
Atlanta (Crown Pointe)
Jan 27, 2020 - Jan 30, 2020
9:00 - 5:00 EST
Live Virtual

Course Details

Reference

JIS 402

Duration

4 days

Delivery Mode

Virtual, Face-to-Face

Certification

BA Certified
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