In this episode, David Bieg, PMI’s Business Analysis & Requirements Program Manager, tells us about PMI’s latest initiative; the development of a foundational standard in Business Analysis. PMI’s goal with this new standard is to provide a definitive body of knowledge for people performing business analysis on projects, programs, and portfolios.
After listening to this episode, you'll understand:
- Why the Project Management Institute is focused on Business Analysis
- How the Standard for Business Analysis differs from the Practitioner’s Guide
- How to apply the information in the Standard for Business Analysis to your work
The Project Management Institute (PMI) has developed a foundational standard in Business Analysis. With this new standard, PMI hopes to provide a definitive body of knowledge for people performing business analysis on projects, programs, and portfolios.
The Standard vs. the Practice Guide
The Standard for Business Analysis differs from the Business Analysis Practice Guide in that the foundational standard defines the “what is” of business analysis and its alignment to project, program, and portfolio management.
It defines business analysis through identification of the process, tasks, inputs, and outputs of analysis activities.
The Business Analysis Practice Guide briefly describes the “how to” and puts business analysis in the proper context. It primarily focuses on being a usable reference on how to perform business analysis on projects and programs.
The Business Analysis Practice Guide will complement the Standard for Business Analysis by allowing practitioners to better understand how and when to use a technique or execute a specific process.
Drivers Behind the Development of the Standard
The first driver behind the creation of the Standard for Business Analysis was the success of the Business Analysis Practitioner’s Guide. The overwhelmingly positive response from the community led to further development of business analysis initiatives. The BA Practice Guide validated the appetite for business analysis related guides and standards.
The second driver was that PMI’s business analysis community expressed an interest in the development of a standard to support the PMI-PBA certification.
Focusing on Business Analysis
While PMI has been addressing requirements since the beginning of the institute, there has been more emphasis on requirements and analysis activities in the last few years due to market research showing a growing need for quality requirements and the positive outcomes that can result from business analysis.
Additionally, poor requirements and related factors have been a leading cause of project failures. As such, business analysis is a critical competency for project, program, and portfolio management.
By focusing on business analysis, the PMI hopes to increase project success rates through increasing the skills of those performing business analysis activities.
What to Expect from the Standard for Business Analysis
The Standard for Business Analysis is for anyone who performs business analysis activities, regardless of their job title or a specific lifecycle (waterfall, Agile, Lean, etc.).
The profession will be defined by six knowledge areas and 35 processes. It will also include tailoring tables to explain how perform each process an adaptive and predictive setting so that you can adjust your approach based on the lifecycle approach.
Knowledge areas go from the initial needs assessment through the solution and solution evaluation process.
The Standard for Business Analysis will also establish a common language for project, program, and portfolio professionals (including Business Analysts).
Next Steps for the Standard
The Standard for Business Analysis is going into the subject matter expert review phase in the fourth quarter of 2016 to get feedback from industry experts. It will then go through the public exposure draft review process in the first and second quarter, 2017. The public exposure review will provide the opportunity to for you to give feedback and comments to the development team for further consideration.
The document will go through an adjudication process and rounds of edits at each phase before final publication in the fourth quarter of 2017.
Listen to the full episode to hear more about PMI’s Standard for Business Analysis.
Get a copy of the Business Analysis Practice Guide, find a new technique, and use that new technique in your work. The more you learn about and apply new techniques, the more tools you’ll have in support of your analysis activities.
Bieg & Associates, Inc.
Dave Bieg has over 30 years of experience in business and information systems and has served as a Program Manager, Business Analyst, and Systems Engineer. He’s currently the Business Analysis & Requirements Program Manager for the Project Management Institute where he leads the development and release of PMI’s Requirements Management initiatives.
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