Can tools add value to agile business analysis?
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We had an interesting webinar with Mary Gorman, EBG Consulting on whether Business Analysis is required in agile projects? Mary talked about lots of concepts and put forth her case on how business analysis is essential for agile success. If you didn't attend the webinar, an on demand replay is available here. Also read our interview with Mary on this topic here.
Mary shared with us five agile business analysis actualities that are key to agile project successes. Two of them stuck my mind – delivering valued products and product partnerships. Often we tend to forget hard questions like to whom our products are most valuable and what is the potential of our products? Mary Gorman shared a simple value equation with us
Value = Increased Revenue + Avoid Cost + Improved Service + risk
If we are to provide value to our customers, we have to concentrate on each of the factors above. Increasing the revenue stream can be through either creating new streams or protecting the existing ones. Software tools can play a role in avoiding cost through increasing operational efficiency to improve time to market. Improving the service could mean increased usability and accuracy. Coupling these factors with risk and dependencies and looking at the balance is very critical for providing a valuable product.
The role of partnership and collaboration is increasingly becoming important and this was once again stressed by Mary with her opinion of analysis is everyone’s job and is a continuous process. At IBM we believe that a collaborative requirements definition & management capability that is linked with other critical lifecycle disciplines such as test management are essential for success in agile business analysis, particularly where you may have large, distributed teams and/or regulated environments.
The webcast also discussed other agile business realities like the importance of discovering product needs just in time, structured conversations and confirmations through examples, prototypes and documentation. Watch the complete webcast here.