Every Business Analyst should ask themselves before starting the project:
- Why? Why are we doing this project – what is the business problem/need and so what measures and targets for those measures will define what success is. These are known as objectives.
- What? What needs to be done (from business/logical perspective) in order to affect the measures to the point where the project can be declared successful (i.e. it has got the targets) – these are known as requirements.
- How? How will the requirements be realized. What are the rules that will deliver the requirements. These take the form of process models, process definitions, data models, data definitions and various nonfunctional requirement rules.
- Who? Who is the end user? You will need to know this in order for the program to even fulfill its purpose. Marketing data must also be collected to incorporate what the end user is asking for. The goal is to reach the objective with everyone satisfied.
- Risks? Client may not be inclined to take large risks. Getting them to be specific can help when generating the project program. You may also be able to overcome some of their fears or doubts by explaining the risk factor more thoroughly.
- Time constraint? There has to be a set time frame for the requirements. Most clients have time constraints which affect every avenue of the business. You have know what these are and plan accordingly.
Business Analyst should avoid
- Making assumptions that are not quickly resolved into fact
- Ignoring stakeholders or stakeholder groups because they are so difficult to deal with or contact
- Failing to ask questions