Thursday, September 22, 2011

What is Business Analysis / Business Analyst job position?

While applying for jobs with various companies, many MBA candidates come across the term "Business Analyst" or "Business Analysis". What do these terms mean? Here is some info:

From  and

A Business Analyst (BA) analyzes the organization and design of businesses, government departments, and non-profit organizations; BAs also assess business models and their integration with technology.  It is a liaison among stakeholders in order to understand the structure, policies, and operations of an organization, and to recommend solutions that enable the organization to achieve its goals.

Business analysis is the discipline of identifying business needs and determining solutions to business problems. Solutions often include a systems development component, but may also consist of process improvement, organizational change or strategic planning and policy development. The person who carries out this task is called a business analyst or BA.

There are at least four tiers of business analysis:
  1. Planning Strategically – The analysis of the organization's strategic business needs
  2. Operating / Business Model Analysis – The definition and analysis of the organization's policies and market business approaches
  3. Process Definition and Design – The business process modeling (often developed through process modeling and design)
  4. IT / Technical Business Analysis The interpretation of business rules and requirements for technical systems (generally IT)
A Business Analyst acts as a face of Customer to the Development team, most of the time. A Business Analyst should be credible enough and the team should have absolute faith in him. Development team should be able to ask any question regarding the system and they should believe in the answers that BAs provide. If they start having doubts on the answers BAs provide they may get tempted to develop something that is not needed by the business or spend extra time in clarifying the doubt from various sources. The development team should trust a BA.

    • Interact with the developers regularly and keep asking them if they have any doubts. Keep it simple and just make sure that they know you are there if they need any clarifications.
    • Make sure you run the development team through the requirements before they start with the implementation. Do it on module-to-module basis, plan with the Project Managers and Team Leads. Make sure you keep these sessions as informal as possible.
    • Encourage the team to approach you for any clarification in the requirements. When they approach you make sure you clarify their issues or get the issues raised to correct person, if you are not the right one.
    • It is a good idea to explain the business side to the developers and also let them know about the domain, as you have that knowledge. Have these talks at non-work timings like lunch, coffee or while traveling. Make sure you don’t come out as a person who is bragging about his knowledge but as a person who is genuinely helping. Keep it honest.

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