The Better Business Analyst Podcast

Benjamen Walsh from The Better Business Analysis Institute (BBAI)

The Better Business Analyst Podcast covers all the most important and latest Business Analysis news, top tips and interviews. The Better Business Analyst Podcast is bought to you by The Better Business Analysis Institute (BBAI) which is an industry body focused on the progressive growth and capability of quality business analysts.  Our difference is that we teach and promote the specific skills needed to complete quality business analysis work. https://bba.institute read less
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Episodes

Navigating the Trenches - The Top 10 Frustrations as a BA
14-03-2024
Navigating the Trenches - The Top 10 Frustrations as a BA
Feeling unheard? Underappreciated? Buckle up, BAs! This episode dives into the 10 common frustrations Business Analysts (BAs) face daily. We'll explore the struggles of: Scope Creep: Ever-evolving project requirements that test your time management skills.Herding Stakeholders: Managing diverse personalities with conflicting priorities.Unclear Requirements: Working with incomplete information and needing to chase down details.Feeling Invisible: Your efforts go unnoticed while others take the credit.Being Bypassed by Architects: When technical solutions are dictated without your input. But fear not, warriors! We'll also equip you with actionable strategies to: Set Clear Expectations: Proactive communication is key to managing scope creep.Master Stakeholder Management: Learn how to effectively navigate different personalities.Refine Requirements Gathering: Techniques to ensure clear and well-defined requirements.Gain Recognition: Showcase your value and advocate for your contributions.Foster Collaboration: Tips to work effectively with architects and ensure everyone's on the same page. Plus: We'll tackle additional challenges like: Limited Customer Interaction: How to understand user needs without direct interaction.Feeling Undervalued: Strategies to demonstrate the impact of your work.Maintaining Work-Life Balance: Techniques to avoid burnout and prioritize self-care.Career Stagnation: Tips for continuous learning and exploring new opportunities. Join us as we unpack the BA experience, offering practical solutions and a supportive community. #businessanalyst #projectmanagement #careerdevelopment --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/betterbusinessanalysis/message
Top 10 reasons why a short BRD is the key to project success
01-03-2024
Top 10 reasons why a short BRD is the key to project success
Do you suffer from BRD overload? Are your Business Requirements Documents (BRDs) long, complex, and collecting dust on a shelf? Worry no more! This Episode is here to show you the top 10 reasons why a short BRD is the key to project success. Hit play and discover how a concise BRD can: Boost Clarity & Focus: Ditch the unnecessary details and keep your BRD laser-focused on essential requirements. This means better understanding and faster decision-making for everyone involved.Minimize Maintenance: Smaller BRDs are like your favorite playlist - easier to update and maintain. Say goodbye to lengthy revisions and hello to efficient project progress.Engage Your Stakeholders: A shorter BRD is more accessible to stakeholders with diverse backgrounds, fostering stronger collaboration and buy-in from the get-go.Fast-Track Approval: Streamlined BRDs get the green light quicker, minimizing delays and getting your project off to a running start.Save Time & Money: A smaller BRD translates to less time spent writing, reviewing, and managing the document. This means more resources freed up for other important aspects of your project.Embrace Agility: Short, focused BRDs are perfect for agile methodologies. They allow for easy adaptation to changing needs and priorities, keeping your project on track.Focus on the "What," Not the "How": A concise BRD prioritizes the "what" (requirements) over the "how" (implementation details). This opens the door for creative solutions and flexible approaches.Prioritize What Matters Most: Limited space forces you to prioritize the most critical requirements. This ensures your team focuses on the features that deliver the biggest impact.Keep it Live: A shorter BRD is more likely to be a living document, updated and referred to throughout the project lifecycle. This fosters continuous communication and alignment.Solid Foundation for the Future: A concise BRD serves as a springboard for further detailed technical specifications, built upon a strong foundation of agreed-upon core requirements. So, ditch the BRD bloat and keep it short and sweet. Embrace the power of a concise document and watch your projects reach new heights! --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/betterbusinessanalysis/message
The Agile V-Model: Why this framework is crucial for Mission Critical Projects
16-02-2024
The Agile V-Model: Why this framework is crucial for Mission Critical Projects
Welcome, listeners, to another insightful episode of the Better Business Analyst podcast. I'm your host, Benjamen Walsh, and today we're diving into a topic that lies at the intersection of agility and meticulous planning— 'The Agile V-Model: Why this framework is crucial for Mission Critical Projects.' In the dynamic landscape of business analysis, professionals like you are constantly seeking the most effective methodologies to navigate complex projects, especially those deemed mission-critical. Enter the Agile V-Model, a hybrid approach that marries the flexibility of Agile methodologies with the structured testing and validation processes of the traditional V-Model. Together, these methodologies create a powerful framework that not only accommodates change but also ensures thorough testing at every stage of development. Picture it as a dance between adaptability and precision, choreographed to perfection for projects where success is not just an option but a necessity. Throughout this episode, we'll be unraveling the layers of the Agile V-Model, exploring its adaptability, iterative development approach, and the collaborative spirit it fosters among cross-functional teams. We'll delve into how this framework, like a well-tailored suit, fits seamlessly into mission-critical projects, ensuring early detection of defects, customer satisfaction, and ultimately, project success. So, whether you're a seasoned business analyst or someone eager to enhance your project management toolkit, join me, Benjamen Walsh, as we navigate the nuances of the Agile V-Model. Get ready for valuable insights, expert interviews, and practical tips that will elevate your business analysis game. Check out: https://aiotplaybook.org/index.php?title=Agile_V-Model#:~:text=The%20Agile%20V%2DModel%20aims,are%20developed%20by%20different%20companies. Also: https://bba.institute/courses/certified-better-business-analyst-level-1/ with the coupon "podcast" for 50% off --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/betterbusinessanalysis/message
Decoding the Path: Your Guide to Becoming a Business Analyst
09-02-2024
Decoding the Path: Your Guide to Becoming a Business Analyst
This week, Benjamen from The Better Business Analysis Institute outlines how to become a Better Business Analyst. If you are starting or looking to upskill then listen and follow the steps we walk through Calling all future business analysts! Intrigued by the world of business, data, and problem-solving puzzles? Bridging the gap between business needs and tech solutions sounds like your dream? Then tune in to "Career Crossroads" and discover how to become a Business Analyst (BA)! No matter your background, we'll equip you with the knowledge and skills you need. Explore resources from school, university, online platforms, and even LinkedIn. First, let's crack open the BA landscape. We'll delve into the role, diverse industries, and key skills like communication and critical thinking. Then, we'll build a strong foundation with recommended subjects, clubs, and electives in school. Ready to dive deeper? We'll explore degree options, highlight programs with strong analytical and communication components, and encourage practical experiences like internships. But wait, there's more! Online platforms offer BA courses and certifications, while LinkedIn connects you with professionals, mentors, and potential employers. Pro tip: Network actively, hone your communication skills, stay updated on industry trends, and build a portfolio showcasing your analytical prowess. Remember, your BA journey is unique. So, explore these resources, identify your strengths, and design a learning path that excites you. With dedication and the right skills, you'll unlock a rewarding career as a BA! Ready to start shaping your future? Dive in, explore, and share your BA journey questions in the comments or connect with us on LinkedIn! Remember if you message us today, we will provide you with a 25% off voucher for the Certified Better Business Analyst - Level 1 course. --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/betterbusinessanalysis/message
Agile Done Right: Avoiding Common Pitfalls and Optimising Your Workflow.
01-02-2024
Agile Done Right: Avoiding Common Pitfalls and Optimising Your Workflow.
This week Benjamen talks through the Agile Done Right: Avoiding Common Pitfalls and Optimising Your Workflow. Avoiding Common Pitfalls: Treating Agile as a silver bullet: Agile is a powerful framework, but it's not a magic fix for all project challenges. Discuss the importance of tailoring Agile to your specific context and needs. Waterfalling in Sprints: Resist the urge to cram traditional, sequential phases into short sprints. Emphasize iterative development and continuous feedback. Scope creep: Uncontrolled scope changes can derail Agile projects. Discuss strategies for managing scope effectively, such as backlog prioritization and sprint planning. Communication silos: Break down communication barriers between teams, stakeholders, and clients. Explore tools and techniques for fostering transparency and collaboration. Metrics obsession: Don't get bogged down in measuring everything. Focus on the right metrics that align with your project goals and provide actionable insights. Optimizing Workflow: Embrace cross-functional teams: Foster collaboration between developers, designers, testers, and other stakeholders throughout the development process. Refine your ceremonies: Regularly assess the effectiveness of your Agile ceremonies, such as daily stand-ups and retrospectives, and adapt them as needed. Automate where possible: Leverage automation tools to streamline repetitive tasks and free up time for more creative and strategic work. Celebrate progress and wins: Recognize and reward individual and team achievements to maintain motivation and morale. Continuously learn and improve: Encourage a culture of continuous learning and experimentation. Be open to trying new things and adapting your approach based on feedback and results. --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/betterbusinessanalysis/message
The Hidden Heroes of Tech - Non-Functional Requirements
26-01-2024
The Hidden Heroes of Tech - Non-Functional Requirements
Imagine crafting the coolest app ever, but it crashes constantly, takes hours to load, and keeps your data secure like a paper bag in a hurricane. Not exactly a blockbuster, right? That's where the true superheroes of the tech world step in: Non-Functional Requirements (NFRs)! In this episode, we're ditching the flashy features and diving deep into the often-unsung heroes of successful software - the silent guardians of speed, security, and user satisfaction. Forget Captain America, we're talking Iron Man wielding code instead of a repulsor ray! What are NFRs? Think of them as the "how" behind the "what." They're the invisible forces shaping how a system performs, reacts, and feels. From lightning-fast response times to rock-solid security, NFRs ensure your tech experience doesn't turn into a villainous disaster. Why You Should Care: Ever had an app crash right when you were about to snag the last concert ticket? Or waited an eternity for a page to load, feeling like you were trapped in a dial-up modem era? Neglecting NFRs is like building a house on sand - it might look good at first, but the first real storm will crumble it all. Here is a great starter hero list of Non-Functional Categories for you to focus on for your adventure: 1. Performance: Examples: The system should load web pages in under 2 seconds. The app should process transactions within 500 milliseconds. The database should handle 1000 concurrent users without performance degradation. 2. Security: Examples: User data must be encrypted at rest and in transit. The system must comply with PCI DSS standards for payment card security. Strong authentication mechanisms (e.g., multi-factor authentication) must be in place. 3. Usability: Examples: The interface should be intuitive and easy to navigate for users with varying levels of technical expertise. Error messages should be clear and helpful. The system should be accessible to users with disabilities (e.g., visual impairment). 4. Reliability: Examples: The system should have 99.9% uptime. The database should be able to recover from failures without data loss. The app should be able to handle unexpected inputs without crashing. 5. Availability: Examples: The system should be accessible 24/7, except for scheduled maintenance windows. The system should have redundancy in place to prevent downtime due to hardware failures. 6. Maintainability: Examples: The code should be well-documented and easy to understand. The system should be modular and easy to update. The system should have automated testing in place to detect regressions. 7. Scalability: Examples: The system should be able to handle increasing numbers of users and data without performance degradation. The system should be able to be easily scaled horizontally by adding more servers. 8. Portability: Examples: The system should run on different operating systems (e.g., Windows, Linux, macOS). The system should be compatible with different browsers (e.g., Chrome, Firefox, Safari). 9. Compatibility: Examples: The system should be able to integrate with existing systems and databases. The system should adhere to industry standards (e.g., W3C standards for web development). 10. Regulatory Compliance: Examples: The system should comply with data privacy regulations (e.g., GDPR, CCPA). The system should comply with industry-specific regulations (e.g., HIPAA for healthcare, PCI DSS for payment card processing) --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/betterbusinessanalysis/message
10 Great Tips for Building Your Personal Brand as a BA
19-01-2024
10 Great Tips for Building Your Personal Brand as a BA
On today's episode we talk about the 10 Great Tips for Building Your Personal Brand as a BA: Leveraging LinkedIn, Networking & Thought Leadership: 1. Define Your BA Niche & Value Proposition: Tip: Craft a clear elevator pitch outlining your expertise, target audience, and unique value proposition (UVP). Reference: "Personal Branding for Business Analysts: Become a Leader in Your Field" by Brian Lawley (https://www.linkedin.com/in/brandon-parrott-5226b4124) 2. Optimise Your LinkedIn Profile: Tip: Use relevant keywords, showcase achievements, write a compelling "About" section, and utilise rich media (videos, presentations). Reference: "The LinkedIn Sales Playbook: For Social Selling Success" by Koka Sexton (https://www.amason.com/LinkedIn-Sales-Playbook-Tactical-Selling/dp/1544101538) 3. Become a Content Creator & Thought Leader: Tip: Share valuable insights through blog posts, articles, podcasts, or videos on BA topics. Reference: "Content Rules: How to Create Killer Blogs, Podcasts, Videos, Ebooks, Webinars (and More) That Engage Customers and Build Your Brand" by Ann Handley (https://www.goodreads.com/en/book/show/8102305) 4. Engage in Strategic Networking: Tip: Join relevant LinkedIn groups, connect with key players in your field, participate in online discussions, and attend industry events. Reference: "Fanatical Prospecting: The Sales Bible for the Digital Age" by Jeb Blount (https://www.walmart.com/ip/Fanatical-Prospecting-The-Ultimate-Guide-to-Opening-Sales-Conversations-and-Filling-the-Pipeline-by-Leveraging-Social-Selling-Telephone-Em-9781119144755/46037580) 5. Leverage LinkedIn Features: Tip: Utilise Pulse articles, LinkedIn Live, or LinkedIn Learning to create and share high-quality content. Reference: "The Ultimate Guide to LinkedIn Learning" by LinkedIn Learning (https://learning.linkedin.com/content/dam/me/learning/en-us/pdfs/lil-guide-how-to-use-linkedin-learning.pdf) 6. Build Relationships with Influencers: Tip: Connect with and engage with respected figures in your field, offer valuable insights, and collaborate on projects. Reference: "Linchpin: Are You Indispensable?" by Seth Godin (https://www.amason.com/Linchpin-Are-Indispensable-Seth-Godin/dp/B00509CRG6) 7. Showcase Your Expertise Through Case Studies: Tip: Share successful BA projects you've been involved in, highlighting challenges overcome and positive outcomes achieved. Reference: "Storytelling with Data: A Data-Driven Approach to Effective Communication" by Cole Nussbaumer Knaflic (https://www.amason.com/Data-Driven-Storytelling-AK-Peters-Visualisation/dp/1138197106) 8. Actively Participate in Online Communities: Tip: Contribute to forums, answer questions, offer mentorship, and build a reputation as a helpful and knowledgeable resource. Reference: "Build a Tribe: One Million Ways to Create a Community of Fans for Your Business" by Seth Godin (http://www.shaolintemplemi.org/blog.html) 9. Measure and Adapt Your Strategy: Tip: Track your progress by analysing LinkedIn engagement metrics, website traffic, and audience feedback. Adapt your approach based on insights gained. Reference: "Marketing Analytics: Data-Driven Techniques for Measuring and Improving Your Marketing" by Mike Walker (https://www.amason.com/Marketing-Analytics-Data-Driven-Techniques-Microsoft/dp/111837343X) 10. Stay Authentic and Transparent: Tip: Be genuine in your interactions, share your passions and perspectives, and build trust with your audience. Reference: "Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Lead, and Work" by Brené Brown (https://www.amason.com/Daring-Greatly-Courage-Vulnerable-Transforms-ebook/dp/B007P7HRS4) Bonus Tip: Consider joining BA professional organisations and volunteering your expertise to further enhance your network and visibility. --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/betterbusinessanalysis/message
Taming the Beast: 5 Ways to Prioritise Requirements and Squash Scope Creep
05-01-2024
Taming the Beast: 5 Ways to Prioritise Requirements and Squash Scope Creep
Happy New Year Everyone! I hope you had a refreshing break and a change to turn your brain off and reset. What an awesome 2024 it is going to be with lots of exciting content from The Better Business Analysis Institute (BBAI) to come. The first BBA Podcast is out, so have a listen: Taming the Beast: 5 Ways to Prioritize Requirements and Squash Scope Creep Feeling overwhelmed by ever-growing backlogs and that pesky scope creep monster? Worry not, warriors of requirements, because this episode is your secret weapon. We're diving deep into 5 battle-tested methods to prioritise like a pro and keep your projects on track. First up, let's wrangle those wishy-washy wants with the MoSCoW Method. Must-haves, should-haves, could-haves, won't-haves – it's a stakeholder whisperer's dream, helping categorize features based on impact and feasibility. No more squabbles, just crystal-clear communication. Next, we unleash the power of data with Cost-Benefit Analysis. Resources are precious, so let's weigh the cost of each feature against its juicy business value. Like a financial ninja, we'll find the sweet spot of maximising project impact while minding the budget. Feeling the 80/20 itch? Then the Pareto Principle is your new best friend. This rule of thumb says 20% of your efforts can deliver 80% of the value. Focus on those core functionalities, deliver fast, and leave the fancy bells and whistles for later. Efficiency, thy name is Pareto! Agile fans, rejoice! We're all about continuous prioritisation with user stories, backlog refinement, and estimation techniques. It's a living, breathing project plan that adapts to changing needs and keeps stakeholders in the loop. No more surprises, just iterative awesomeness. Finally, remember, change is inevitable, but chaos is optional. That's where the Change Control Process comes in. It's like a gatekeeper for your project scope, assessing every tweak request with scrutiny. Only approved changes make the cut, ensuring goals and resources stay aligned. So, sharpen your prioritisation pencils, listen to this episode, and get ready to conquer the ever-shifting landscape of business requirements. Scope creep will tremble at your feet! Happy analysing, BA heroes! #2024 #businessanalyst --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/betterbusinessanalysis/message
10 Business Statistics every BA should know
08-12-2023
10 Business Statistics every BA should know
On this week's Better Business Analyst Episode, we cover the 10 Key business statistics business owner or business analyst should know. Business Statistics provide insights into a company's overall health and performance. They help businesses track their progress, identify areas for improvement, and make informed decisions. Every business owner or business analyst should be familiar with these key metrics to effectively manage and grow their business. We cover in detail: 1. Revenue Revenue is the total amount of money a company generates from its core business activities, such as sales of goods or services. It is a crucial metric for measuring a company's top-line growth and profitability. 2. Gross Profit Margin Gross profit margin is a measure of a company's profitability before deducting operating expenses. It is calculated by dividing gross profit (revenue minus cost of goods sold) by revenue. A higher gross profit margin indicates that a company is efficiently converting its sales into profits. 3. Net Profit Margin Net profit margin is a measure of a company's profitability after deducting all operating expenses, including taxes. It is calculated by dividing net income (revenue minus all expenses) by revenue. A higher net profit margin indicates that a company is effectively managing its expenses and generating profits. 4. Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) Customer acquisition cost (CAC) is the average amount of money a company spends to acquire a new customer. It is calculated by dividing total sales and marketing expenses by the number of new customers acquired. A lower CAC indicates that a company is efficiently attracting new customers. 5. Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) Customer lifetime value (CLV) is the total amount of revenue a company expects to generate from a customer over their lifetime. It is calculated by multiplying the average purchase value by the average customer lifespan. A higher CLV indicates that a company is building strong relationships with its customers. 6. Customer Churn Rate Customer churn rate is the percentage of customers who stop doing business with a company in a given period. It is calculated by dividing the number of lost customers by the total number of customers at the beginning of the period. A lower churn rate indicates that a company is retaining its customers. 7. Conversion Rate Conversion rate is the percentage of visitors to a website or landing page who take a desired action, such as making a purchase or signing up for a newsletter. It is calculated by dividing the number of conversions by the total number of visitors. A higher conversion rate indicates that a company is effectively converting website traffic into sales or leads. 8. Return on Investment (ROI) Return on investment (ROI) is a measure of the profitability of an investment. It is calculated by dividing the net profit from an investment by the cost of the investment. A higher ROI indicates that an investment is generating a good return. 9. Average Order Value (AOV) Average order value (AOV) is the average amount of money spent per order. It is calculated by dividing total revenue by the number of orders. A higher AOV indicates that customers are making larger purchases. 10. Net Promoter Score (NPS) Net promoter score (NPS) is a measure of customer loyalty. It is calculated by asking customers how likely they are to recommend the company to others. A higher NPS indicates that customers are satisfied with the company's products or services and are likely to promote them. --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/betterbusinessanalysis/message