What’s the BA’s role in an Agile environment?
By helping others we help ourselves. - Anonymous Click To Tweet
“By helping others we help ourselves.”– Anonymous —
As the agile methodology advances, business analysts find it more difficult to understand what their role is in this and what are the changes that the agile methodology involves. Despite the fact that the role of the business analyst is rarely measured in the descriptions of the methodology, this does not mean that the business analysis is not carried out. Rather, agile focuses on delivering value to customers and this involves every team doing business analysis on a frequent basis.
There are four major changes that will determine the paradigm shift in executing the business analyst role in an agile environment. These are detailed below:
1. Agile does not prescribe any documentation.
One of the changes that agile introduces is a process where no documentation of any kind is prescribed, but that does not mean that the documentation does not have to be produced. Rather, the ba should work collaboratively to determine the business need and how much documentation is needed.
The fact of doing without so much detail allows business analysts and especially less experienced ones, to make use of alternative models and texts for the preparation of functional documentation, which favours their simplicity.
2. The appearance of Sprints.
Another major change that has affected how business analysts work is the appearance of sprints, a short interval during which a usable, potentially deliverable product increment is created. This implies that deliverables should be smaller than traditional deliverables so the business analyst only needs to focus on the portion of the solution being delivered during that iteration.
The business analyst must collaborate with the team to determine how much analysis is required for the creation of the partial deliverable and during the iteration without the need to perform any extensive requirements inventory.
3. The product owner’s role
And the third change, the appearance of the figure of the product owner. The product owner is the representative of the business need, he is the one who makes the final decision on what will or will not be included in the scope of the project. The task of business analyst regarding this new role is to assist product owners by providing them with the analytical vision that characterizes it.
4. Business analyst as a couch.
And finally, the business analyst also coaches the other team members on analysis techniques and the appropriate stakeholders to contact. This allows the team to develop in analytical and communicative skills and prevents the business analyst from becoming a bottleneck in the progress of the project.
To conclude, we can say that the agile methodology provides all business analysts with the opportunity to progress in a beneficial way both for themselves and for all team members. Because as we know, by helping others we help ourselves.
You might also like to read about the BA first job. Where to begin? Use this methodology…
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