Posted by tac_admin, December 10, 2014

IT Solutions: The Final Frontier of Business Analysis?

rubics cubeWhen it comes to business analysis, 99% of proposals dedicate some facet to IT solutions. It makes sense, because BAs are expected to have a good handle on software development and implementation.

But therein lies the danger. When you think with a tech-only brain, you run the risk of creating incomplete solutions that result in only a partial transformation. I use the term “partial transformation” because tech-savvy stakeholders may feel satisfied, but employees who don’t rely on software to do their job will be left out in the cold.

I’m often asked this question: “where are your clients in their IT careers?”

The answer: I help my clients reach that senior-level of business analysis, and every once in awhile, my BA coaching has little-to-nothing to do with software development.

This is not to say that I advocate going back to the days of chisels and stone tablets, but not every problem your clients face will be rooted in CRM, data collection, or internal communication systems.

So let’s answer the question, are IT solutions the final frontier of business analysis?

Emphatically no, but IT solutions are an integral piece of the puzzle. But if you’re like many BAs who seek to reach that senior-level position with hands-on experience, you might run into one major roadblock…

Technology is your lifeblood!

Take it from me: even if you’re a software development hotshot, you got into the world of business analysis because you’re pragmatic. Problem solving is the root of everything we do as BAs, and we’d be remiss if we didn’t look at a problem/solution dynamic through multiple angles. So that said…

Take away the tech element to find the most robust solution.

Completed solutions. Full transformation.

Whatever you want to call the results you provide as a BA, it’s best to leave no stone unturned. And that means going beyond what’s on the computer screen, and taking a deep, hard look at the nitty-gritty ins-and-outs of an organization.

Are there communication errors that result in lack of financial solvency?

Are there unnecessary facets of employee routines that result in wasted time?

Neither of these scenarios are rooted in IT solutions, even though there may be one or more technological elements at play. For example, wasteful elements of employee routines may involve archaic documentation that would work better with electronic file keeping.

In short, to offer a comprehensive solution, the answer isn’t always technology-driven, nor is the problem itself. Consider the emotional and practical elements of how a company works, and you’ll create results for stakeholders that lead to higher-paid positions.

At the end of the day, scenarios presented on a blog come and go, but what you really need to thrive is hands-on, real-world experience that prepares you for every obstacle you’ll face as a business analyst.

To get that elusive experience, enroll now in my upcoming live training, Effective Communication and Requirements Elicitation Training.


One response to “IT Solutions: The Final Frontier of Business Analysis?”

  1. […] 2 Technology is everywhere these days, so solutions to our business problems should probably be based on technology too, right? Nope, even if it’s everyone first thinking. When I ask my students to find solutions to optimize a business process, they usually come up with new systems, while many solutions are process- or people-oriented. Teresa Bennett goes in the same direction in this article. […]

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