A business analyst uses various techniques and tools to describe what a business needs in a language the company can understand. There’s a misconception that a BA exists to fill the role of a document writer, but they’re more of a handyman. Despite what others think, BAs come across their fair share of challenges that can make their job more complex and challenging.
Challenge One: What Do You Even Do?
When a business hires a BA for a project, they are asked to serve a function in the industry. Usually, the person overseeing the BA understands what type of work they’re able to do, but the customer may not. A customer may assume that a wireframe and a mock-up are the same thing and are equal in terms of design.
Since this isn’t the case, a BA could be hired by a customer and be surprised when the analyst doesn’t know how to “do their job.”
Before a project begins, the BA should speak to the customer about what kind of tasks they can perform and what certifications they possess. For example, to become a Business Analyst, you’ll want to complete a tableau certification because it’s worth it in the long run.
Challenge Two: Created Specs Don’t Satisfy the Needs of the Development Team
A communication error between the business analyst and development team could cause a significant headache for the entire company. If the requirements for the scope of the project are too ambiguous or vague, the BA won’t be able to create what the development team wants. A BA may also become confused if the requirements aren’t specific enough.
The development team could also underestimate how long a project will take, which could make the BA come up empty when asked for the project on the due date.
The development team must be specific in describing the project by providing accurate, complete, and verifiable requirements. If information is lacking, the business analyst must discuss this with the development team ASAP so the project can continue.
Challenge Three: Change Occurs for No Reason
A business analyst can become frustrated if a requirement changes without notice or without reason. Some external organizations need to change the business process, like the laws or instructions, for legal reasons. However, if the requirements were fully defined or the customer doesn’t know what they want, more confusion could occur.
There are endless reasons why a change can happen during a project, but there needs to be transparency as to why this happened.
Tell your BAs exactly why a change is occurring so they are able to adjust on the fly and meet the customers’ needs. A customer who isn’t sure what they want out of a business relationship between a BA and the company may need to allow extra time to adapt to changes.
Challenge Four: Processes Are Undocumented
A business analyst must have the skills to process documents to come up with an appropriate solution. Still, they should always have documentation for users and present it when describing said solution. With these documents, the BA can give enough details about why this decision matters. However, sometimes there aren’t any documents to fall back on or review.
When a BA sees this problem, it can make it challenging to clarify the details of a project or understand where a solution can be found at all.
The obvious solution is to create a document for a solution or problem, regardless if the customer needs one or not. The document should be presented to stakeholders in order to define the process and find a suitable solution if one isn’t found.