Should your project hire a business analyst? Some reasons why you should

Business

When a customer selects a provider of software development services, one important selection criterion is the balance between team expertise and solution budget. If the planned project is either quite large or complicated, IT companies usually have a business analyst in their development teams. This is the moment when a customer meets a question: Why should they add a business analyst?

Why should business analysts be added to software and app development teams?

Without a doubt, the customer is ready to purchase the development services themselves as it provides a visible outcome, a functioning software solution. At times, the customer does not have a clear idea for the kind of service they pay for during this phase of the project.

A business analyst is any person who carries out activities pertaining to business analysis, regardless of their organizational role or position. According to experts from a mobile app development company in Toronto, the following are the activities of business analysts:

  • Understanding the issues and objectives of the organization.
  • Analyzing needs and solutions.
  • Development of strategies.
  • Driving positive change.
  • Facilitating stakeholder collaboration.

During contract agreement stage, The customer can meet the following arguments for having a business analyst presence on the project:

First of all, Developers will not help the customer in forming the requirements.  This is based on facts that developers lack needed skills for communication and business understanding to identify and generate requirements.

As a matter of fact, it all depends on the professional competence of the team and its members’ willingness to engage in communication and dive into the details of the business domain.

Additionally, experienced developers often already have good analytic skills and even can have a much deeper knowledge of the customer’s industry than a business analyst.

Secondly, neither the customer nor the development team will be able to identify and document their own requirements nicely. This is held true once both parties do not have enough time and resources to do this part of the work.

It is true once both parties do not have enough time and desire to do this part of work. But with required training and common interest, both the customer and the development team might cope well with the requirements elicitation and be able to do this work without the help of analysts.

Nevertheless, a project developed without a phase of business analysis can be quite more expensive in comparison to a project with it. The business analysis allows the software service providing firm to understand customer needs, its users and turn them into a solution.

So what exactly does the customer pay for? Let’s find out.

Defining the vision and scope of the project

Preparing the document of Project Vision and Scope helps all parties have a single and unified view of the project. The process of creation includes listing and documentation of objectives, costs and timelines, responsibilities of each person involved, as well as defining the scope and deliverables involved (hire app developer).

Requirements’ collection

The main objective of business analysis is investigating customer needs and suggesting the best possible solution. Gathering requirements is critical as the project’s success depends on it. Business analysis experts gather and analyze information from a large number of people who interact with the business.

If these people are shareholders, then business analysts are responsible for identification and articulation of real requirements, not just expressed desires. They should also determine the relevance and priority of these requirements too.

Additionally, a customer may have the needed expertise and knowledge of their business domain. However, this is not enough in clarifying what they really need.

Managing change in the project

Regardless of how well the requirements gathering stage was done at the project’s start, some modifications might be needed during its development. Business analysts manage such changes and ensure that they are implemented easily. They also ensure that existing features and available budget are taken into consideration.

The presence of a business analyst is crucial whenever a development team works in agile methodology, meaning iterative work and regular software releases are frequent.

Demonstrating intermediary results and final solution

In a lot of firms, BAs visualize processes with diagrams and often collaborate with developers and UX designers to prepare  basic layouts and wireframes. In this way, the business analyst shows the customer how the team understands the vision and verifies the product meeting the customers’ needs.

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