This business analysis training course is aligned to IIBA® Business Analysis Body of Knowledge (BABOK® v3.0).
Delays, cancellations and defects in systems development projects stem in large part from our inability to understand project requirements and the environment in which they exist, as well as our inability to communicate those requirements clearly enough to enlist the collaboration and commitment of stakeholders. In Business Analyst Fundamentals, you will learn key communication skills, interaction techniques, and problem solving skills required to leverage your IT and business knowledge to effectively understand, document, and present the requirements that define a project's scope. This indispensable course solidifies the foundations of business analysis and equips business analysts with the critical thinking, analytical skills, and necessary people skills to thrive in their roles and add measurable value to every project.
This two-day business analyst training course will give you hands-on experience with proven techniques for discovering, understanding, and documenting the business environment; understanding and depicting project scope; identifying, documenting, and confirming business objectives; modeling current and desired business processes; and communicating all of these expertly to colleagues, sponsors, and business customers. Lively lectures combined with insightful demonstrations and realistic practice exercises provide you with the competence and confidence to improve project outcomes through better project scope and business requirements definition.
In this business analyst training course, learn how to:
Who Should Attend
This project management training course is perfect for you if you are a:
I. The Business Analysis Profession
Its only in recent years that business analysis has begun to be recognized as a profession in its own right. While people have been performing the Business Analyst role in organizations for several decades, differing definitions of the role abound. Well start the workshop by exploring some of those definitions, as well as gaining a clear understanding of where the industry appears to be heading and some emerging common standards for the profession.
Because Business Analysts work with people throughout their organizations, its imperative they have good teamwork and communication skills. Well begin with a fun activity to explore differences in communication styles, and well also model a few techniques for laying a solid foundation for teamwork on any project.
II. Communication in the Business Analysis Context
Many tasks that are integral for successful business analysis involve significant communication. In this section of the workshop, you will hone your ability to connect with project stakeholders at all levels using effective verbal and nonverbal techniques. Youll also identify and practice overcoming sources of misunderstanding, which is vital for requirements validation.
Working in small groups, you and your peers will practice choosing appropriate techniques to solicit information from stakeholders at various levels in an organization. Following a fun demonstration of how miscommunication occurs, youll enhance your ability to connect with stakeholders and foster effective communication by clarifying stakeholders contributions and validating information.
III. Analytical Thinking and Problem Solving
Projects often arise to solve specific business problems. Understanding the underlying problem, though sometimes overlooked, is key to being able to develop the correct requirements so that the best solution can be developed. During this section, you will explore and practice problem analysis and its application.
Guided by your instructor, you will work with a team to analyze the symptoms of a problem, define it, and determine root causes. Youll practice team problem-solving techniques and determine, based on your teams performance, ways to further enhance your communication and team collaboration skills.
IV. Interaction Skills for Business Analysis
Its not uncommon for Business Analysts to wonder why they need interaction skills. After all, most projects have a sponsor, a project manager, and at least one manager from the business. But managing interactions is a key Business Analyst role, one thats central to the effective understanding of business problems. This course module explores the importance of interaction, key interaction skills for Business Analysts, and the situational application of those skills in business analysis functions.
Following review and discussion of interaction skills and their application to business analysis functions, you and your team will play a fun learning game that allows you to demonstrate, reinforce, and earn prizes for your knowledge of these vital skills.
V. Business and IT Knowledge
The role of a Business Analyst has often been compared to that of a bridge providing a connection between two points, in this case the Information Technology organization and the lines of business that comprise the project domain. Well present a model that shows how the IT and business domains should be focused and leveraged throughout the project lifecycle.
Working with your team, youll quickly test and improve your understanding of how the business and IT domains integrate in the Business Analyst role and how they fit with the systems development lifecycle.
VI. Strategy Analysis
One of the most overlooked functions of a Business Analysts is the strategy analysis, which can also yield some of the most valuable findings of a project. Strategy analysis is a key best practice in business analysis, and they can be surprisingly straightforward. During this portion of the workshop, we will explore some practical techniques that produce keen, relevant, and useful insights for the business organization.
Your instructor will introduce a hypothetical but realistic case project company, and you and your team will put your analysis skills to the test as you conduct a guided assessment. Youll define and document the business environment, clearly describe the scope of the business, and perform a straightforward identification of business opportunities. Finally, youll assess the feasibility of a set of projects and present recommendations on the project(s) of greatest value to the business.
VII. Project Initiation and Analysis
What most people think of as business analysis is central to project initiation and the analysis phase. Because of the depth of skill these activities require, most Business Analysts demand separate training to develop true mastery. This course module therefore provides an overview and introduction to three crucial business analysis activities by demonstrating common tools for identifying and documenting project scope, for modeling current and desired states, and for eliciting key requirements.
After reviewing a project request for an identified business opportunity, youll work with peers and your instructor to determine and document the project scope with a context diagram. Youll then review a current state model of one key business process, and, based on identified functional requirements, you will then work with your team to develop a model for a possible new process design.
VIII. Requirements Analysis
Once functional requirements have been discovered and documented, they have to be analyzed to determine their accuracy and completeness and refined where necessary. Well examine the inherent analysis challenges and show you effective techniques to analyze and improve your requirements.
Working with a set of identified functional requirements, you and your peers will analyze them against a set of criteria for effective requirements. Youll practice clarifying and rewriting requirements to improve their specificity and accuracy.
IX. Requirements Communication
After the requirements are analyzed and refined, they have to be validated with business customers, users and management. Communicating these requirements involves much more than information exchange; at its best, its a process of negotiation, validation and consensus building. Well examine the inherent communication challenges and help you confidently choose the best ways to achieve your communication goals and gain the stakeholder buy-in required for successful requirements management throughout the project lifecycle.
Working with a requirements from our case project, you and your peers will determine which communication approaches will best meet the needs of various stakeholders. Youll practice categorizing and organizing requirements for maximum value, and youll explore how to develop and present clear, concise requirements documentation appropriate for your projects.
X. Solution Assessment and Validation
The most effective business analysis goes beyond defining project scope and specifying requirementsit includes an assessment of whether the specified solution meets the stakeholders needs. In this final module of the course, you and your colleagues will have a chance to explore the concept of acceptance criteria and some of the validation activities that BAs can perform on projects. Youll review key task for solution assessment and validation, and youll have an opportunity to practice some ways to validate solution effectiveness.
Working with your small group, you will identify ways to assess the validity of a solution and to determine whether the solution meets the stakeholders needs.