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Business Analysis

Business Analysis

Business analysis is an integral part of IT projects. It involves identifying and discovering business needs and solving business problems with the software.

A business analyst is a person who is engaged in gathering, analyzing, and documenting the needs of project stakeholders.

They're a translator who communicates between two communities: the customers and the software development team.

A business analyst can combine the role of project manager and act as a product owner. A business analyst's function can also be called requirements analysis, system analysis, or requirements engineering.

Requirements manager, application analyst, business system analyst, and IT business analyst are also synonyms for the business analyst position.

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Business analysis: Definition

The primary goal of business analysis is to examine an organization's business needs and find solutions to its current and future problems. A business process analysis will help you devise a plan to reach short- and long-term goals and inform stakeholders about the goals and direction of an organization. It also enables you to study your work processes to identify places for improvement and bottlenecks.

Important note: Business analysis shouldn't be mistaken for business analytics. Business analytics is concerned more with data, recognizing patterns, and predicting market trends.

Business analysis process in the UX design process

UX design is one of the stages of digital product design. While business analysis starts this process, leads it, and closes it.

Did You Know...

UX design responds to collected and developed requirements in the form of designed wireframes and user flows that pass between the screens of a business application (wireflow).

To better understand how a business analyst and a UX designer work together, let's consider a project to develop the next version of a business application that recruits candidates for various company positions.

A business requirement may be:

"Increase the number of job applications by 25% in three months."

A business analyst notes that the business application isn't equipped with a function to upload a CV file without applying for the job offers provided.

The UX researcher in the project subjects this observation to an analysis of user needs and confirms that users are looking for such a capability.

Now, a business analyst's job is to develop user requirements that meet the assumptions of both user needs and company needs (business requirements).

Next, a user story appears on the business analysts' list:

"The user should be able to upload their CV without applying to a published job offer."

From this user story, follow tasks such as "create user account," "edit user profile," "change email address," "upload CV file," "Add tags to your CV," etc.

The mechanism for creating a user account can have many functional requirements. It must, among other things, ensure the user's secure connection to the website, meet the security requirements for creating an account, and protect passwords and personal information.

Speaking of data, you should also prepare the appropriate GDPR clauses. It's also the business analyst's responsibility to verify with the CTO, solution architect, or security expert which cloud solution will be suitable to provide this function and meet the entire set of requirements that arose from the business requirements.

In response to the collected requirements, the UX designer designs the individual user steps as sketches of interface screens (wireframes).

They examine the information resulting from the business analysis and add usability requirements so that the designed interface results from the described business processes and provides the user with a comfortable and positive user experience.

There may be a lot more business requirements than in the described example.

The task of business analysts is to verify that these requirements don't conflict with previous ones, what new business rules they create, how they influence the development of this particular information system, and whether they're reflected in the company's business operations.

Benefits of business analysis

Today, the market and customers are changing rapidly, and businesses need to keep up. Business analysis and business analysis professionals are ideal tools and people who can help organizations adapt to evolving needs and expectations.

Business analysis enables you to introduce order to your business, detect vulnerabilities, implement new solutions, and improve project management.

Furthermore, it provides the following advantages:

  • Increased efficiency
  • Improved customer experience
  • Enhanced team collaboration
  • Risk management
  • Cost reduction
  • Informed decision-making
  • Strategic planning
  • Improved return on investment

That's why business analysts are a precious resource, enabling your company to gain a competitive advantage. Employing them ensures a deeper understanding of business operations and their effective optimizations so you can meet your needs and objectives.

Steps of the business analysis process

What does the business analysis work entail? You can take steps to make the business analysis planning process more straightforward.

Naturally, they will differ depending on the company and its needs, but you can treat the following as helpful suggestions.

Set and understand business goals

To perform business analysis, you should start by setting and thoroughly understanding business goals. Without this, you can't conduct a successful analysis because you won't be able to identify the organization's needs.

You can take a moment to establish goals if you don't have any yet or think of new additional ones. If you have those already, you can examine them and improve on them or work based on them.

Perform analysis of business operations

This step involves taking a closer look at the processes and operations within your company. During this step, business analysts focus on business process improvement and finding potential challenges.

For example, one of your goals might be to improve customer service; in that case, analysts will concentrate on examining how the process currently runs and what can be enhanced or changed.

Prepare a business plan

After analyzing business operations, you and the business analyst should create a plan of action. This involves creating requirements based on the analysis's results. A business plan allows you to take concrete actions over time, improving processes step by step. With a well-thought-out plan, you will ensure that process optimization goes smoothly and with as few issues as possible.

Assess the progress of the business plan

During the implementation of the business plan, you should continuously monitor its performance and the state of introducing changes. This will help you know when new issues or opportunities appear, fix them quickly, and act on them.

Business analysis: Best practices

There are some guidelines that can help you conduct an effective business analysis.

  1. Ensure that you and your team understand the established business objectives and business analysis course.
  2. Aggregate feedback from various teams and departments so that you can gain a full understanding of current processes.
  3. Select the most suitable technique for business analysis.
  4. Consider tools that will make the business analysis effort more straightforward.
  5. Repeat the business analysis from time to time to keep improving work processes with up-to-date data.
  6. Keep organized and understandable requirements documentation.

Business analysis techniques

Multiple techniques exist that can help you conduct business analysis and create an effective business plan. Here, we describe six of them.


The SWOT acronym stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. As the name suggests, this technique allows you to define various aspects of your business. It will help you identify your organization's strengths and weaknesses and show potential risks and opportunities.

Here are some examples of these four aspects:

  • Strengths: Characteristics that make your business stand out against the competition, experienced employees.
  • Weaknesses: Resource limitation compared to the competition, ineffective marketing strategies.
  • Opportunities: Discovery of a new market niche, high user engagement on your social media channels.
  • Threats: Appearance of new competitors, fast-changing market trends.

Thanks to the analysis of these four elements, you will be able to put your resources into places that will yield effective results.


The MOST technique concentrates on your organization's mission, objectives, strategies, and tactics. This method enables business analysts to obtain a complete overview of the business. With MOST, you can analyze how your mission affects the rest of the business operations and develop strategies to achieve goals and tactics for tackling potential issues.

This method is primarily about aligning your business strategy with your values and mission and making the implementation of this strategy much smoother.


The MoSCoW acronym stands for Must or Should and Could or Would. This method is popular in project management and software development. Business analysts use it to prioritize requirements in order to increase the return on investment, among other things. Moreover, the MoSCoW techniques enable your developers and stakeholders to understand the importance and benefits of various requirements.

It allows you to organize the product's features into groups. You can decide whether certain functionalities are a must-have and should be worked on as soon as possible or whether they can be implemented in the future.


CATWOE focuses on customers, actors, transformation process, worldview, owner, and environmental constraints. This method enables you to gather different perspectives and identify the most important entities in your business. Additionally, it allows business analysts to analyze how decisions and business processes affect other parties.

What exactly do these six aspects allow you to discover?

Customers: These are entities that draw benefits from your product and are directly affected by it.

Actors: Describe people who are involved in a process.

Transformation process: What kind of transformation will result from a particular process? What will be affected by the product?

Worldview: This defines the beliefs of individual stakeholders. It describes the bigger picture and wider influence of a business. What does the company ultimately want to achieve?

Owner: Describes the owner of a process or business, their role in it, and the impact they will have on decision-making.

Environmental constraints: What limitations and constraints will impact the process or business? Environmental constraints also define the organization's rules and policies, which can be external or internal.

Business process modeling

Business process modeling aims to analyze current processes and predict future needs and challenges so that the business can be prepared to handle them. This method helps business analysts find processes that can be automated, improved, or made more secure.

This technique gives you insight into the following:

  • Operations within a workflow
  • Owners of processes
  • Places where decisions occur
  • The timeline of the process
  • Failures and successes of processes
  • Devices involved with processes

User stories

User stories will allow you and business analysts to focus on user experiences and their needs. Transforming requirements into user stories will also help you get to know users better. You may also want to use user journey maps or personas to help with this process.

Your organization can significantly improve user interaction with your services and digital products thanks to user stories.

Skills of business analysts

Business analysts need a set of particular skills to improve business processes and operations. To be more precise, we're talking here about soft skills that can be overlooked in favor of technical ones.

You should take note of these capabilities before you start recruiting potential employees for this position.

Understanding of business problems

The primary responsibility of a business analyst is to solve business problems effectively, including optimizing processes. To do that, they need to understand them and how they affect the organization's operation. A business analyst needs to have a good eye for detail and possess good problem-solving skills. Their task is to work with stakeholders to find the best possible solution to a situation.

Critical thinking skills

Critical thinking skills also play a crucial role in problem-solving ability. A business analyst needs to use critical thinking to prioritize requirements and optimize workflows. This skill also helps them see how different decisions will affect processes and results and enables them to develop effective strategies. To do that, a business analyst needs to consider all the pros and cons and make an informed decision or suggestion.

Effective communication

A business analyst must communicate effectively with various entities within the organization, such as stakeholders. To do that, they need to know how to communicate complex ideas straightforwardly. This involves adjusting the language and terms they use. For example, not all stakeholders need to be tech-savvy; therefore, technical jargon will be challenging for them to understand.

Negotiation skills

Since a business analyst will come into contact with various parties in your organization, having negotiation skills is crucial for them. They have to know how to make a team collaborate and exchange views and opinions healthily. One of their responsibilities is to find a balance between different needs and expectations and find a solution that will satisfy everybody.

Desire to continuously learn

A business analyst should be able to quickly adapt to changing market trends, technologies, and business environments. Therefore, to stay up-to-date, they should have the desire to learn and improve continuously. Their professional development and skill improvement are crucial for conducting effective business analysis.

Business analysis in The Story

At The Story, we employ UX designers, researchers, and business analysts. Business analysis is a crucial part of the digital product development process.

We focus not only on the user but also on the business needs of the software owner. Therefore, our work results in products that give real value to all project stakeholders.

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