Let’s pretend, you have a brilliant idea of creating your own software product, but at the present, you realize that your knowledge is not nearly enough: you don’t know where to start and how to move on. Does this sound familiar? The majority of startup owners have faced such a devastating dead-end situation at the beginning of their creative process, as they didn’t know how to properly think overall development details, taking into account the actual requirements and available budget in order to avoid crushing mistakes.
For instilling in the confidence of the product’s success down the road from this very initial stage, it is recommended to find a competent specialist who conducts a qualitative business analysis. This article is devoted to business analyst and answers several common questions, such as who is a business analyst and why do we need a business analyst at the initial stage of the building business. We’ll tell you about the main features of business analysis and explain what benefits customers get by hiring an experienced business analyst for their project.
Specifics of the Business Analyst Work
It is hard to describe in two words what is the work of a business analyst consists of, but it can be explained on a simple and clear example. Imagine for a moment, you have a land plot and decided to build a new house upon it. At first, you’ll refer to an architect who’ll ask you such significant questions as what budget you have in mind, what style of house you want, how many bedrooms it will consist of, whether you plan to build additional facilities like a garage, gazebo, etc.
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According to your requests and wishes, the architect will work out plans of activities and approve them with you before hiring builders and starting on immediate construction of a future home. After approving the plans, the construction process will begin, and your architect will tightly control the project implementation at each stage to make sure that the house is being built in accordance with these plans. In the case of problems requiring revision of the plans, or if you want to make some changes to the house building, the business analyst will help you face these issues correctly, without interruption of construction, preventing potential risks and coordinating all adjustments with participants of the building process.
First of all, a business analyst analyzes the behavior of consumers who will use the final products through different sociological methods like surveys, experiments, and observations to deeply understand their actual needs and interests. The customer, in turn, explains the needs of his business, and the business analyst helps him coordinate all business processes according to the demand of users. In this way, the business analyst forms project requirements and passes them to the IT team or other external suppliers for creating a new product or modifying the already existing system.
Advantages of involving a business analyst
The key role of the business analyst in a project is to create a consistent and complete model of business requirements for software development. He gets specific requirements from the customer, and then based on these, develops a technical specification, documents a system and software architecture of the IT product, set development and testing tasks. When the project is implemented, he provides a tutorial for users and solves any possible functional issues at all stages of the life cycle of the created system.
The business analyst in the IT sphere often deals with automation tasks. He collects information from all participants of the development process, studies it and thoroughly describes the functionality of the software. As you see, the role and responsibility of the business analyst also includes the technical formulation of software development tasks. And this is exactly why do we need a business analyst on each stage of the development process.
The work of the business analyst includes the next stages:
- Identification of the customer needs, understanding the problem that he wants to solve.
- Finding and formulation of the concept of solution independently or with the help of a team.
- Creation of terms of reference, by formalizing the concept with specific requirements for the future product.
- Detailization of each requirement in the form of specifications.
- Consulting of developers and QA engineers during the software development process, discussing disputable points with the customer.
What is the result of the business analyst’s work?
- Models of processes and structures using the IDEF 0 / 1X, BPMN standards.
- Diagrams of the system structure in the form of a mind map or using UML standards.
- User interface prototypes.
- Vision & Scope Document which includes scenarios of use and suggestions for implementing the idea.
Business analysis at Computools
In Computools, we pay a great deal of attention to the business analysis process in order to protect our clients from unnecessary or incorrect actions and deliver the final product as quickly and efficiently as possible according to all customers wishes and requirements.
Our business analysts have:
- a high level of knowledge in the field of IT, management, economics, accounting and managerial accounting;
- strong analytical thinking and the ability to systematize information;
- knowledge of IDEF0, IDEF1X, EPC notations;
- the ability to compose SQL queries and work with databases;
- the ability to quickly understand customer requirements and determine their priorities, as well as to come up with effective technical solutions and talk about their impact on business in understandable client language;
- theoretical and technical skills in working with relevant software;
- the important skill of convincing demonstration of the competence of a company in a certain area, forming a clear idea of the client project and his requirements after a brief communication;
- knowledge of the fundamentals of programming (including object-oriented), designing, developing, and documenting software;
- knowledge of the fundamentals of the theory of algorithms, the theory of databases, the theory of systems and systems analysis, the basics of information security, etc;
- knowledge of the fundamentals of human-machine interface design;
The excellent business analyst establishes such trustful relations, that the client perceives him as his representative, as a person who defends his interests. Be assured that our business analysts are faithful defenders, who help clients understand and specify their requirements in a way that better corresponds to the ideas and real capabilities of the project team. Goals of the business analyst are based on the main customer requirements and needs.
If you’re still in doubt as to whether you need a business analyst for your project, carefully study these crucial points below:
You don’t need a business analyst if:
- you’ve already launched the product;
- you’re satisfied with the current development team and their technical process;
- there are no problems and misconceptions with requirements and processes;
- you just want us to provide you with a developer on outstaffing terms;
- you have your own qualified business /IT/systems analyst;
- you’re a BA specialist who exactly knows how a product should look/work to the last detail (UX, exception/error handling, etc).
You need a business analyst if:
- you came up with an idea and want us to make a profitable product out of your idea;
- you’re not a BA and aren’t ready to become this type of specialist for now;
- you seek professionals who’ll ask you the right questions and check your ideas for maturity, helping to refine it;
- you’re keen on the development of your core business and working with investors and partners, but not on setting tasks and allocating functions among developers, looking for a better way of implementing new functionality.
Have you determined that you actually need a business analyst for your project? Our 5+ years’ experienced specialists will help you save valuable time, avoid frustrating failure and potential mistakes, as well as increase the working productivity of the whole team. Feel free to contact us by firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re looking for a qualified business analyst to turn your brilliant idea into a real product.
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