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BAs Need to Think Quietly

Also at BAWorld: Boston, Monday I heard Barbara Carkenoard talk about “ROI? Measuring the Real Value of Business Analysis” and her learning objectives were:

  • Learn to talk about the specific value of a strong business analysis discipline
  • Consider business analysis metrics for use in your organization
  • Understand why a financial ROI is not normally calculated for business analysis
Some of the key points of interest for me were these, with my own commentary:
Business analysts should be involved in creating the business case. Most projects don’t bring them in until the project is already decided upon. But business analysts inherently are good at analysis and can really think through whether a project even makes sense.
Business analysts need to figure out how to block out big chunks of time to think quietly. Analysis requires thinking…so let them think!
An interesting discussion took place around cultural differences between countries and how it relates to the use of process or lack of. This came out of a question about why organizations try to short-cut business analysis on the projects. And Barbara proposed that the US culture is one of “hurry up, slam it in, we’ll fix it later” whereas a lot of other countries (she named Canada and the UK) are more likely to follow a process to get it done right. I laughed because just last week I had an executive say “It’s okay if we don’t get all the requirements defined, we’ll just log everything not yet written down as defects and fix them in QA”…and he was very serious about it.
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