It’s All About Technique

When it comes to eliciting requirements, the BA needs to use their judgment to decide which option makes the most sense for the project. Of the four recommended techniques for eliciting business requirements, they may choose the Interview method, JAD (Joint Application Development) sessions, the Survey method, or the Brainstorming method. To give you an idea of what each of these techniques entail, take a look at the breakdown below: Interview Method The Interview Method is a conversation with stakeholders to elicit or validate needs and requirements. This technique may even include one or more stakeholders. The interview may involve […]


Project Lifecycles

Every project progresses through several phases of work.   These phases can be thought of as the Project Life Cycle. Take a look at this helpful chart to get familiar with the work and expectations of each phase.                         Phase Name                                                   Description Plan the project This phase of the cycle involves discovery of and documenting the need and assigning resources:1. Market research deriving need from larger project2. Managing and assigning available resources3. Alignment with corporate standards and strategic objectives Scope the project During this phase the objectives of the project and the scope are defined1. Clarify purpose and objectives2. Identify […]


Business Requirements Documentation 101

Though I’ve written extensively about how to elicit requirements and ensure your requirements are crystal clear, today I thought I’d walk you through the process of documenting those requirements. For starters, business data requirements are part of the business requirements document (BRD). They describe the information needs of the business area. The BRD is created to assure the stakeholders their business problems and needs are understood accurately and completely. It also provides the documentation needed to design a solution that best addresses the business needs. Let’s take a look at an example involving requirements about taking payments. We have a […]


How to Create a Storyboard in Microsoft Office Word

I found this document online that was created by The Laboratory for Innovative Technology in Education that shows how to create a storyboard using Word. If you are just starting out creating storyboards or if you you’ve heard the term “storyboard” but haven’t seen one, this document may help you get started. Storyboards are used most often in an agile environment; however, they can be used during any analysis and development phase if you choose to use this method to assist in documenting requirements. Right-click the following link to download a PDF version of this document: How to Create a Storyboard in […]


Barriers to Listening: Must-Have Verbal Communication Skills for BAs

Perfect communication is when the receiver accurately interprets the sender’s intended message. But while on the job, there are several factors that can influence or interrupt this message. Those factors are called Barriers to Listening. Check out what each of these 5 barriers entails and how you can amend your listening behavior  to prevent faulty communication while eliciting requirements: Filters. Our brains process each new piece of information through filters that have developed since childhood. Typically, we are not aware of the influences that personal filters can have on intended messages. In other words, your subconscious is affecting how your […]


Lost in Translation: Is Your Body Language Interfering with Your Message?

Did you know that 55% of your message is conveyed through nonverbal cues? As a Business Analyst, this little known fact is especially important. During requirements sessions, it is the Business Analyst’s job not only to capture the requirements being given, but also to facilitate discussion about those requirements and take the conversation to a deeper level. As the liaison between the business (SMEs) and the technology team (developers, system architects, DBAs, etc.), BAs have the added responsibility to communicate effectively between the groups. Similarly, the Test Analyst is often the liaison between the BA, business, and the development team during […]


Do You Suffer From Analysis Paralysis?

Do you find yourself in an endless loop of getting requirements, updating requirements, adding requirements, and removing requirements? If so, you may have analysis paralysis. Fear not, there is a cure for this disease! 🙂 I enjoyed this post by David Wright and found his comments on this subject helpful. Click here to read David’s post “Documented Requirements as an Essential Artifact for Systems Development”


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