BA Core Skills - Overview & Intro© Ability Engineering 2007                                       Page 1 of 26
BA Core Skills - Overview & Intro© Ability Engineering 2007                                       Page 2 of 26
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroImagine a typical business project which a BA may get called into.The departments involve...
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroBAs are typically charged with creating a single, coherent set of information about a pro...
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroEven if a project is focussed on one model type – for example, a BPMN Process Model – the...
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroHaving a number of different models in a project means we need to start to apply some of ...
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroA simple meta-model for Use Cases© Ability Engineering 2007                              ...
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroAnd another for the domain model of the business. © Ability Engineering 2007             ...
BA Core Skills - Overview & Intro..and there are lots more.These are particularly important. They are part of the life of ...
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroThis is the one you’ll have learned on most UML courses: take the nouns from the text of ...
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroA more obscure example, but one which spans two areas which are normally spread across ti...
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroA more down-to-earth example.Most projects have loads of lists & spreadsheets of risks an...
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroBut these models are all part of a larger picture. Together, then represent a rich pictur...
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroThis is a fragment of a metamodel from a recent telecoms project.The key item here is the...
BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroThis represents WAY too much information to manage manually – this is what computers are ...
BA Core Skills - Overview & Intro© Ability Engineering 2007                                       Page 16 of 26
BA Core Skills - Overview & Intro© Ability Engineering 2007                                       Page 17 of 26
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IIBA Multimodels

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IIBA Multimodels

  1. 1. BA Core Skills - Overview & Intro© Ability Engineering 2007 Page 1 of 26
  2. 2. BA Core Skills - Overview & Intro© Ability Engineering 2007 Page 2 of 26
  3. 3. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroImagine a typical business project which a BA may get called into.The departments involved have a process, but only sort-of, and nobody really sticks to it.Also, each different group within the department has their own set of tools & techniques for getting thejob done, and their own private stores of knowledge.Mostly, they are using MS Word and Excel, with a bit of MS Project thrown in occasionally. Mappingthe interactions between the teams is a challenge: it’s mostly done via emails and meetings, with someinformation kept on a shared drive, but with no clear organisation.Those who, like me, are contract BAs are now looking forward to many months of lucrative work,organising the business processes, understanding who produces what, and organising the knowledge ofthe team.Confident that we can significantly improve their business performance.Except this isn’t a business project: this is an IT department. And the groups are all part of IT. Thereare BAs, 6-sigma process modellers, UI and Ux designers and testers.Sure, we have a process - sort-of. The BAs probably use one tool for requirements management andanother for use cases. The 6-sigma people another for processes.And the UI designers use something else to create their wireframes. But they take input from the Userexperience team, who use PowerPoint for their User Stories. And the testers use another toolset, but it’sOK, because they get a 1-off email with a spreadsheet of the requirements, and keep their test casessomewhere else….And the poor Project Manager tries to make sense of it all with occasional snap-shots from everyone, butkeeps their own list of risks & issues. And the plan lives in MS Project.And stranger still: this situation hasn’t changed that much in the 20 years that this author has beeninvolved in large-scale IT projects.Has anything interesting happened in IT in the last 20 years….. © Ability Engineering 2007 Page 3 of 26
  4. 4. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroBAs are typically charged with creating a single, coherent set of information about a project. We’ll callthat coherent set of data a ‘model’. Examples of models are Process, Use case, conceptual,Requirements or User story/Journey.These models have defined types of information within them, and many books get written about howthey can be created.This presentation will suggest that just having one model type as the focus of a project means the projectwill be limited in what is formally ‘known’ about the project, and that having multiple, linked modelscan be hugely beneficial, both to the quality of the focal model, and to the project in general.Some model types have evolved to capture particular kinds of knowledge. For example, the BusinessProcess Modelling Notation allows an accurate picture to be created for the processes within anorganisation. It records who does what activities, in what order, and what deliverables are produced andconsumed by each activity.A great many specialist tools exist, which focus on the capture of individual knowledge types.... © Ability Engineering 2007 Page 4 of 26
  5. 5. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroEven if a project is focussed on one model type – for example, a BPMN Process Model – then there’smuch more knowledge which the project encounters as that model is created. So in a process model, theBA will discover that some processes use functions of particular software systems, where thosefunctions might be captured in another form – the use case model for those systems. They may alsocapture information about the organisation: not just who does which processes, but how those people fitinto the organisation, and who has what roles within the project. © Ability Engineering 2007 Page 5 of 26
  6. 6. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroHaving a number of different models in a project means we need to start to apply some of our BA skillsto ourselves. If this was a business, we might create a domain/conceptual/data model of what things areknown by the business. For a BP Model, it might look like this. © Ability Engineering 2007 Page 6 of 26
  7. 7. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroA simple meta-model for Use Cases© Ability Engineering 2007 Page 7 of 26
  8. 8. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroAnd another for the domain model of the business. © Ability Engineering 2007 Page 8 of 26
  9. 9. BA Core Skills - Overview & Intro..and there are lots more.These are particularly important. They are part of the life of most BAs, but rarely make it into astructured analysis tool. But they are vital to keeping a project moving forward in an organised way.Knowing who’s doing what, who owns what, what the risks & issues are is just as important knowingwhat the requirements & user journeys are. © Ability Engineering 2007 Page 9 of 26
  10. 10. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroThis is the one you’ll have learned on most UML courses: take the nouns from the text of the Use Cases,and form them into a domain model.© Ability Engineering 2007 Page 10 of 26
  11. 11. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroA more obscure example, but one which spans two areas which are normally spread across time andorganisation. Those who design a Data Warehouse or MI system to monitor a process, and those whodesign the process in the first place may work in very different ways, but the ‘Business Event’ is ashared idea.So, link the Business Event from the Process world with the ‘fact’ in a fact/dimension model which thedata people use.© Ability Engineering 2007 Page 11 of 26
  12. 12. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroA more down-to-earth example.Most projects have loads of lists & spreadsheets of risks and issues, notes of meetings and actions, sowhy not hook them up to the requirements/analysis/design artefacts which they refer to? This makesreporting on them more informative: Risks know what ‘thing’ (requirement/use case/component ) iscausing the risk, and those elements know that there is a risk associated with them.Simple stuff, but powerfull.© Ability Engineering 2007 Page 12 of 26
  13. 13. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroBut these models are all part of a larger picture. Together, then represent a rich picture of what we canknow about a project, from many points of view.BUT, only if we choose to link the meta-models together.So we might say that, for example, we may link• RISK to a DOMAIN MODEL CLASS, to indicate that there’s a problem• STAKEHOLDER to an ACTIVITY to indicate that the person OWNS the activity• ACTION to a USE CASE, to remember that there’s an action arising from a review meeting which we need to do concerning that use case.• ACTIVITY to USE CASES, so show that the process activity needs to use that use case© Ability Engineering 2007 Page 13 of 26
  14. 14. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroThis is a fragment of a metamodel from a recent telecoms project.The key item here is the Product Feature. This was the way that the product manager spoke about whatthe solution did, and what the scope should be – always in terms of this- or that- feature.So we made Feature the focus of the analysis.Each product feature had a number of Use Cases: usually in two kinds: some where the user was USINGthe feature, and some more where they were setting-up or administering the feature (this detail notshown).We tried to express as much as possible of the function of each feature into Use Cases, but there werestill some aspects which needed declarative requirements. A special type of requirement was the non-functionals, attached to each Use Case, which specified the performance, frequency and volumerequirements for each use case – really useful for the designers downstream.Unusually for this project, we also reverse-engineered some existing parts of the administration usersinterface, to discover the Feature Settings. We made sure each setting got used in a use case somewhere,and each action on the UI was a step in a use case.Finally, we captured the Risk & Issues in the model, and linked those to any of the other items (links notshown for clarity).Also, we captured which product release each use case, requirement and feature setting wasimplemented (links also not shown).© Ability Engineering 2007 Page 14 of 26
  15. 15. BA Core Skills - Overview & IntroThis represents WAY too much information to manage manually – this is what computers are for.So, get yourself some kind of tool, to which everyone can contribute knowledge, and from whicheveryone can pull information, and whatever format they want: reports, spreadsheets, documents,diagrams.And find/write some standards about what knowledge belongs where (your own meta-model) and stickto it.© Ability Engineering 2007 Page 15 of 26
  16. 16. BA Core Skills - Overview & Intro© Ability Engineering 2007 Page 16 of 26
  17. 17. BA Core Skills - Overview & Intro© Ability Engineering 2007 Page 17 of 26

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