Is there a template for a BA role description?

Is there a generic job title or description?

A lot of people ask me for a good template for a BA role – but I tell them there is no such thing.

A BA “helps people understand things”, but different business analysts help different people understand different things in different contexts.  Some may not even have the job title of BA.

Fortunately though, it is possible to agree on what a BA is doing on a specific project, or for a specific client.  Doing this can help with setting and managing expectations.

How can I explain my BA role to someone else?

I always start with a sentence about why the BA is there in the first place.  This is a much better starting point than trying to list all the things a BA might do without providing the reason.

Continue reading “Is there a template for a BA role description?”

Advertisements

I thought training was easy – what is going on here?

I spend a lot of my time training people in areas such as agile project delivery, business and product innovation and business analysis. Allegedly I spend around 50% of my time running training sessions, while I also spend time consulting or providing “transition management” to help an organisation through change.But against all expectation I have been seeing an increase in demand for training over the last year and seem to be spending 90% of my time running training or facilitating workshops. This is great because I am getting a steady and interesting supply of work.  But it also led me to start wondering how the training landscape is shifting.

Continue reading “I thought training was easy – what is going on here?”

The humble trade-off matrix

I have been doing some business analyst training recently and I spoke about a “trade-off matrix” a couple of times. A couple of people have asked for a good link to explain what one is and why they are so cool. So I looked on the web and couldn’t find anything decent enough to send through.

So I thought I would describe what a trade-off matrix is here. I will also briefly mention why they are useful and then mention a couple of variations that people might not have heard of.

Continue reading “The humble trade-off matrix”

Defining the value or your internal consulting team part 3 – reviewing your services

In my last couple of articles I described a rough process for creating a value proposition for an internal consulting team. To do this I used “Sophie” and her mythical business analyst team as an example.

Now we are going to go one step further. Sophie can already explain the services her team offers, but now she needs to assess how well the team can provide those services.

Our high level approach

In order to assess the services that the team offers, Sophie will assess:

  • The stakeholders or “customers” who use them;
  • The actual service and whether to measure it;
  • The current and future demand for the service and the number of people in the team who can provide the service;
  • The skills needed to deliver the service at the appropriate level of quality; and
  • The tools and partners the team can use to be better at delivering the service or at smoothing supply and demand.

Continue reading “Defining the value or your internal consulting team part 3 – reviewing your services”

Defining the brand and value of your internal consulting team – part 1

I am just moving back into consulting after a 2 year gig as a CTO. So people are already asking me about the brand, services and focus of my consulting company. I guess it is time to start creating my value proposition, visual language and case studies so that I can get back into marketing. Instead I am spending a little time with my wife and daughter and planning to do all that thinking in the lead up to Christmas, when things are usually a little slow in Australia.

But what about internal consulting teams? They sometimes compete with me for work and I even get asked to do things that someone in-house would do much better than an external consultant like me. So why do people often go outside for services that they can obtain in-house?
Continue reading “Defining the brand and value of your internal consulting team – part 1”