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Putting Strategic Business Analysis Theory Into Practice

Putting Strategic Business Analysis Theory Into Practice News

Revealing that Business Change Academy’s Business Analysis Practice course principles are helping her clients to better consider the holistic picture of their business strategy, Jeanette Venter, Project Manager at Aurecon, is positively guiding her key business stakeholders to make the right project decisions when moving forward.

“While facilitating a workshop to unpack detailed requirements with my client — who has high-interest and high-influence — I drew the POPIT model on the whiteboard, from the learnings I acquired on BCMG’s Business Analysis Practice course.

Referring to each element of POPIT, I highlighted to the project team the need to ensure that the IT solution works within the bigger environment, and was able to ask pertinent questions regarding the organisational context, processes impacted and people affected,” says Jeanette.

This approach to managing project stakeholders helped Jeanette make a breakthrough, as towards the end of the workshop, another key stakeholder requested sessions with end-users to discuss their perspective.

“In my role I always try to maintain that the ‘client is always right’, meaning at times I need to subtly influence them.

The techniques I learnt on BCMG’s training helped me achieve what was needed — my client began to recognise the other stakeholders situations. Not just by deriving new requirements, but also by their willingness to understand the change’s overall operational feasibility,” says Jeanette.

The typical disconnects between different stakeholder perspectives can leave organisational disconnects between strategy and tactics, which ultimately cause fundamental problems with the implementation of business system changes.

Jeanette shares that “Resistance to change is one of the biggest challenges we face, and it is a significant obstacle to overcome. We are the ‘middle man’, having to balance the business needs and keeping the client happy, whilst understanding the end user’s challenges and managing their frustrations. And it’s our job to close that gap.”

Not only did Jeanette put the strategic business analysis theory into practice, she was also able to use the outputs from the workshop create quality project deliverables and expedite project delivery. “In addition to POPIT, we also drew the high-level business processes on the whiteboard, which I later formalised in Visio, and we then workshopped them again a second time round to ensure understanding and agree that we were making the right key decisions’” says Jeanette.

Jeanette found the course content extremely relevant, and believes that any project manager or business analyst involved in business systems projects will benefit from the training. She says,

Many projects are typically considered to be IT projects, but realising the true implications for the business environment goes a long way to making everybody happy!”

You can read more about Jeanette’s training experience here and learn more about the Certificate in Business Analysis Practice here, which leads to the BCS International Diploma in Business Analysis.

About Business Change Academy

Business Change Academy is a training company based in Cape Town, South Africa. Founded in 2008, Business Change Academy provides accredited qualifications + short courses for project professionals seeking internationally recognised best-practice competencies in business analysis, solution development and change management.

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Meet Sandisa Luthuli | Modelling Business Processes Delegate

Sandisa 'Zizi' Luthuli Modelling Business Processes BCMG Difference

Sandisa ‘Zizi’ Luthuli, Business Analyst at Old Mutual, shares her training experience having recently completed the Modelling Business Processes course.

On the training Zizi learnt how to analyse business processes and identify real opportunities for business improvement, and has gained a deeper understanding and business process modelling skills that are driving her ambitions forward.

Here’s what Zizi had to say about her training experience:

Tell us a bit about yourself, Zizi.

I like to think of myself as being a very ambitious, goal-oriented 25 year old, originally from the Eastern Cape, and I am passionate about achieving the goals that I set for myself.

Having studied Accounting in High school, I clearly had in mind studying for a BCom degree in Accounting when I applied to University. Regrettably, because of space constraints, I had to enrol into another faculty — The Department of Information Systems — with a view to, a year later, re-enrolling on the BCom Accounting Degree.

However in the the second semester of my 1st year, the faculty introduced Business Analysis and Systems Analysis courses — and that’s when I actually discovered that I really wanted to continue on the business analyst career path.

Change excites me and I love being an active change agent within organisations.

The role of a business analyst is also to be a good listener, which is a skill I inherently possess, plus I am good at problem solving, as I like to analyse situations.

Why did you decide to take the modelling business processes course?

I attended the course to learn and improve my business process modelling.

Particularly to get some BPMN (Business Process Modelling Notation) skills, systems modelling techniques, use case diagram tips and some general business analysis knowledge.

How will the course help you in your career?

On the Modelling Business Processes course I acquired many skills that will definitely help me to deliver better business processes, as I’ve now got a much deeper insight of how to go about my analysis and modelling work.

Overall, the course will help me to:

  1. Do greater analysis on the business process
  2. Better understand the opportunities available
  3. More easily transition to use case diagrams

What was your biggest learning – did you have an AHA! moment?

Now I have a much improved understanding of the mapping from process tasks to use cases, that will make me more confident in this area of business analysis.

  • The task analysis worksheet has been very effective — it helps me to understand the detail of the task, especially steps, decisions and business rules.
  • And how to move smoothly from detailed business processes to specifying functional business requirements — that was a good lesson for me.

What did you enjoy most about the BCMG training experience?

It was fun.

At the beginning of each section, we commenced a mini-test that helped us to identify areas for learning and improvement. Plus, the course was extremely interactive and encouraged us to work in teams that pulled us out of our comfort zones.

What would you tell someone who is considering doing this course?

I’d say, even if you have touched on the subject matter previously, and you think you know it,

… go for it as you will learn something new!

This training course definitely reinforced my analysis and modelling work, and I look forward to implementing the new skills in my role.

In the spirit of ‘keep growing’, what are you keen to learn next?

Next I’d like to learn more about documenting business requirements – so that’s the Requirements Engineering course.

Zizi took the steps to learn business process modelling skills that are driving her ambitions. Are you ready to gear up? Find out more about the Modelling Business Processes course here.