This was the subject of 4 panelists and the moderator who came together at the BA conference organized by International Institute of Business Analysis held at Nihmans Convention center
on 29th & 30th of May.
Business Analysts have evolved in a big way in the past decade. This profession has taken on paramount importance in the entire life cycle of a project and is being responsible for scope creep and quality deliverables. With this responsibility BAs don multiple hats and is expected to be domain aware, technically aware and have time and budget management skills. Processes have been laid, refined
and widely accepted in the industry. The BA Community has a bible in BABOK (Business Analysis Body of Knowledge) owned by IIBA (International Institute of Business Analysis)
The participants were Aziz Abdul Seyid, who spear heads the learning and capability development of Business Analysis at HCL; Lalitha Ravindra, Head of Business Analysis Research
and Innovation at Syntel; Nizam who represents Spark system and me. We were moderated by Kannan S who is the driving force of the IIBA, Chennai Chapter.
Lalitha started with her experiences and highlighted that BA could no longer be one-dimensional. She stressed on processes, skill development and the benefits of certifications of CBAP.
Aziz stressed on the career path of a BA and the industry giving the community a place that it trulydeserved. His experiences of setting up a COE for Business Analysis and how it has brought in the demand for active participants of COE.
Nizam had conducted a survey of participants in the previous BA conference which was the also the inception year for BA Convention. It was suggested that people layemphasis on events, education, facilitate BAs with the right tools and raise awareness that there were 4 maturity levels for evaluating an organization’s BA practice.
I started speaking about my experiences starting with the Banking Industry. A structured analysis and technical implementation helped a bank reduce its risk portfolio resulting in millions of pounds of saving. Now defaulters are spotted on the social media, which is a big data solution. Retail industry has always debated if they needed data scientist or data artists. Planning the right mix of products on shelf to its placement has always been a challenge. These solutions use the most sophisticated modelling tools and rely on self-service Business intelligence, the targeted users of which are Business analysts and C level
Though we all speak of using cutting edge technologies and being aware of the latest, some of the legacy problems still exist like getting the electoral role right. We could use Unicode to support all official Indian languages (we have 23 official languages) and are helped by complex de-duping algorithms to prevent registrations many times; providing a search facility for proper nouns on Sound “x” ; Social, Mobility, Analytics and Cloud is the future. However we need to deal with what has been in existence since 1951 and mine them to the future.
We concluded that action items on the community should be
- Empowering Academic institutions with BA skills
- Empowering practitioners with right tools
- Facilitate knowledge groups, chapters in various states
- Improve BA maturity level of Corporates
- Be socially responsible BAs– worry about carbon footprint, usage of alternate sources of energy such as solar where applicable, water recycling especially in turn key project implementations
- Not every project can be started afresh; dealing with legacy problems when modern technology was not available is important, even if it is not in a format that is conducive to current trends.