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Business Analysis Planning Workshop Overview (1 Day)

A requirements work plan helps the Business Analyst define their requirements activities encompassing not only elicitation and analysis activities but also the support activities to consumers of the requirements for implementation of the solution. With this list of activities Business Analysts can confidently estimate tasks.  This plan helps the Business Analyst identify all sources of requirements, along with the best way to elicit requirements from these various sources. Utilizing a requirements work plan can help the Business Analyst track progress and communicate the status of requirements activities. 


As Business Analysts, you are most likely highly organized, but without the planning tools and business analysis expectations; you may have the appearance of being disorganized in your plight to deliver effective requirements. If we do not pause to plan our work, that would be like trying to ride a bicycle before the wheels have been attached. You might be able to sit on the bike and think about where you want to go, but you won't get anywhere at all. In a rush to provide a solution, the problem still might not be resolved because users are still unskilled. So the cycle of design a solution, find a problem, design a solution, and find a problem just continues, with everyone who is involved still unhappy and unproductive. 


Most organizations have identified productivity as a strategic goal for all employees.  Business Analysts can contribute by developing their plan and working toward the plan. We were challenged to deliver with speed, increase productivity & efficiency,

and to help deliver a competitive advantage. Management most likely will be pressing to complete the analysis phase quicker than possible. The plan will provide you the ammunition to discuss the options to meet aggressive timelines.

· Develop creditability as a Business Analyst
· Understand how to organize your business analysis tasks
· Make the most of your stakeholders' time
· Make more accurate estimates for business analysis activities
· Provide clear business analysis approach and scope
· Establish requirements communication vehicle and frequency
· Establish estimates of time commitments for Business Analyst(s) and Stakeholders
· Allow determination of business analysis status
· Establish business analysis deliverables
· Spend more time on requirements to accelerate software development

20 Immediate Benefits of Audience

1.       Develop creditability as a Business Analyst

2.       Understanding of how to organize your business analysis tasks

3.       Make the most of your stakeholder’s time

4.       Make more accurate estimates for business analysis activities

5.       Provides clear business analysis approach and scope

6.       Establishes requirements communication vehicle and frequency

7.       Establishes estimates time commitments for Business analyst(s) and Stakeholders

8.       Allows determination of business analysis status

9.       Establishes business analysis deliverables

10.   Spending more time on requirements can actually accelerate software development

11.   Identify efficiency opportunities

12.   Establish standards for business analysis work plan

13.   Identify inputs needed for embarking on solution level requirements analysis

14.   Learn the factors that accelerate and lengthen a requirements development effort

15.   Understand that there are multiple planning approaches based on the project type, methodology, complexity, etc.

16.   Understand the impact of stakeholder analysis and involvement on your planning

17.   Gain an overview of the elicitation techniques to consider when planning

18.   Gain an overview of the analysis models and how to choose the right one or ones

19.   Increased probability of project success

20.   Provides you a negotiation tool

Business Analysis Planning Workshop Outline

1.       Introduction – This course is intended to provide guidance to business analysts planning their work.  Consider the Business Analysis Planning and Monitoring Knowledge Area definition from the BABOK® version 3.0:

Business Analysis Planning and Monitoring is the knowledge area that covers how business analysts determine which activities are necessary in order to complete a business analysis effort. It covers identification of stakeholders, selection of business analysis techniques, the process that will be used to manage requirements, and how to assess the progress of the work. The tasks in this knowledge area govern the performance of all other business analysis tasks.

a.       Overview of the Agenda

b.      Participant Introductions

c.       Workshop Goals and Objectives

d.      Workshop Logistics

2.       Overview of Business Analysis Work Plan – Many times BAs are given a deadline to complete the requirements and with that date in hand start developing detail requirements.  The goal appears to be to make the date vs. deliver a quality set of requirements.  This section explores these two questions and seeks to explain how we can plan for the unknown.

a.       What is a business analysis work plan?

b.      Why should I create a work plan?

3.       Initiating a Business Analysis Effort – This section will contain the following components

a.       Outputs of Initiation Phase - It is highly likely that the business analyst will not receive all the outputs required from the initiation phase.  The business analyst will need to plan for some of this work (namely driving out the high-level scope) to occur in the requirements phase.  Understanding what is required to begin requirements engineering for solution level requirements and the quality of these outputs is key to ensuring success.

Group Exercise – Share projects in participant team setting and select one as case study going forward

Group Exercise - Assess the outputs of initiation phase for case study

b.      Identification of Project Characteristics – Not all projects are created equal, hence some patterns of sameness will emerge.  In this section the participants will be provided with three categories of consideration; Project Type, Business Analysis Approach, and Project Complexity. 

Group Exercise - Assess the project characteristics for case study

c.       Stakeholder Analysis and Communication – The leading cause of project failure is lack of stakeholder involvement.  This section defines tools for stakeholder identification and stakeholder profile documentation.

Group Exercise - Assess the define case study stakeholders and develop profiles

d.      Requirements Deliverable Checklist – It is always good to understand what milestones are expected.  This section provides the opportunity to set the milestone deliverables for the business analysis work dependent on the previous sections of this chapter. 

Group Exercise – Document the deliverables that will culminate the business analysis effort

4.       Components of the Business Analysis Work Plan – Business analysis is more than just gathering requirements that are out there for the “picking” and arranging them neatly in a document for consumption.  This chapter provides consideration of all the business analysis activities and ensures reasonable and realistic estimations of business analysis tasks.  This chapter also addresses the development and socialization of a communication plan and requirements management plan.

a.       Plan Elicitation and Collaboration Activities

Exploration of Elicitation and Collaboration techniques

Group Exercise – Develop list of elicitation and collaboration events with estimations

b.      Plan Requirements Analysis and Design Definition Activities

Exploration of Requirements Analysis and Design Definition techniques

Group Exercise – Develop a list of requirements analysis and design definition activities with estimates

c.       Plan Solution Evaluation Activities

Consideration of Solution evaluation tasks necessary for solution success.

Group Exercise –Develop a list of solution evaluation activities with estimates

d.      Establish Stakeholder Communication Plan

Discussion of the value of ensuring all stakeholders accept the level of commitment required for solution success.

Group Exercise – Develop a list of events in which communication is required with estimates

e.       Establish Business Analysis Information Management Plan

Understand the components of a Business Analysis Information Management Plan

Group Exercise – Establish a Business Analysis Information Management Plan

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