Business analysts work with financial data and IT teams to establish recommendations and strategies to optimize costs and improve the process itself.
phase is crucial for understanding business needs and offering strong recommendations on how to meet them as a result of the software development process.
Who a Business Analyst Is And What Their Job Is During The Workshop Phase?
The main responsibility of Business Analysts (BA) is bridging the gap between IT and the business. To do so, they evaluate processes, determine requirements, and provide data-driven recommendations and reports to management and stakeholders through data analysis.
Business analysts, usually, work closely with financial data and IT teams to establish recommendations and strategies to optimize costs and improve the process of software development.
The BA’s job will usually include a set of activities that are important from the perspective of successful workshop deliverables:
1. creating a detailed business case outlining problems, opportunities, and solutions for the business,
2. identifying and prioritizing technical and functional requirements,
3. budgeting and forecasting,
4. planning and monitoring,
6. defining business requirements,
7. reporting to stakeholders.
One of the BA's biggest jobs is to capture requirements and use them to engage the IT department and understand what the customer wants. Even though the true product owner is the business, BA has to act like one as well to get the best results.
5 Steps To Conduct a Workshop Business Requirement Analysis
Learning from our experience at Score, we've put together a framework of five steps for you to conduct a workshop-based business requirements analysis that will help you accurately define your business needs to reach a consensus between the customer and the service provider.
1. Identify The Key Stakeholders
How do you identify the key stakeholder in the project? Simply by asking two questions: who has the biggest stake in the project, and who is the sponsor of the project? The first question is to identify the stakeholders who influence the scope of the project. The second is to identify the end users because their insights are critical to the success of the project and whether the end users' needs can be met.
2. Capturing Stakeholder Requirements
Each stakeholder group needs to outline its expectations and requirements for the project. It would be beneficial if this information was already available during the workshop. Based on these requirements, various use cases can be developed to help the user walk through the system or the process and thus better understand its functionality. Of course, building actual prototypes of the system or the product can also be very helpful.
3. Categorization of The Requirements
The benefit of categorization is that the process can be facilitated by grouping stakeholder’s requirements into four distinct areas: functional, operational, technical, and transitional.
4. Interpretation And Record of The Requirements
This stage consists of multiple layers. The first is the accurate and detailed definition of the requirements, with the writing of the requirements tied to business needs. Interpretation also includes analyzing the impact of the change on processes, products, and people. It’s important to work with stakeholders to resolve conflicts within the requirements and then conduct a feasibility analysis to identify major issues.
This step is a formal stakeholder’s commitment to the requirements and a statement that the requirements reflect their needs. This sign-off is critical to preventing what we call ‘scope creep’. What is scope, you might ask? Simply put, it's the parameters of the project that
include a detailed description that identifies and describes all major deliverables and any project boundaries. In general, a project scope creep occurs when new features are added to already approved product designs without an equivalent increase in budget, time, and resources.
Professionals working on agile projects typically stay with the project throughout its lifecycle and even through multiple releases. The role of the business analyst is constantly evolving and changing – especially as projects increasingly use data to advise on business operations.
We hope that this glimpse of business analysis’ scope of work has convinced you to try and fit this role into your discovery workshops. As you can see, it’s a much-needed bridge between the development team and the product owner (the client), and it helps to ensure an optimal efficiency of the resources, producing precisely the solution that the user needs to solve the defined problem.
What’s more, it’s key to run the business analysis systematically, as this strategy is the best for determining what the business problem is and what the customer expects from the new product.