Foundations of Business Analysis

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Why do more than 50% of the IT projects fail to achieve the original objectives for which the project had started? Why are there so many project "re-starts"? There are several key challenges organizations face in translating user needs into systems specifications.

Successful projects are built on the foundation of well-written requirements. This course provides the techniques to help Business Analysts write well-formed, testable, verifiable user requirements that translate client needs into clear and testable solutions. These requirements ensure the business and stakeholder needs are implemented correctly in the final product.

Intended Audience

​This course is intended for beginner to intermediate Business Analysts who are looking to improve their skills by learning best practices and techniques for eliciting, analyzing, documenting, validating, and communicating requirements.

At Completion

​Participants will learn how to perform stakeholder analysis, utilize techniques to elicit the needs of these stakeholders, translate their needs into solution requirements, and confirm these requirements are well-written, correct, and precise.

This course is compliant with the IIBA's Business Analysis Body of Knowledge (v2.0) and enforces the industries best practices and techniques for eliciting, analyzing, documenting, validating, and communicating requirements. You'll learn the technical writing techniques that apply directly to writing requirements documents and you'll learn to apply proper techniques for writing-correct, clear, concise, comprehensive, and cohesive requirements.


​No prerequisites - This course is suitable for both beginner and intermediate Business Analysts who would like to increase their skills in order to elicit, write and effectively manage requirements for their projects.

Exams & Certifications


Full Student Guide

Course Outline

Section 1: Introduction to Business Analysis

  • What is Business Analysis?
  • BA-BoK framework
  • Benefits of Business Analysis
  • Project success factors
  • Exercise – Brainstorming Challenges
  • Challenges of Business Analysis

Section 2: The IIBA and the role of the Business Analyst

  • Role and responsibilities of a Business Analyst
  • The IIBA mission and history
  • CBAP Overview
  • BA-BoK guide and purpose
  • Overview of knowledge areas
  • Exercise – Ball Toss Challenge
  • BA role vs. PM role
  • The BA career path
  • Underlying competencies of a Business Analyst
  • Importance of requirements communication
  • Workshop – Introduction to Case Study

Section 3: Supporting the Project Portfolio

  • The purpose of Enterprise Analysis
  • The "Executive Paradox"
  • Defining the business need
  • Workshop – Defining the Business Need
  • Goals and objectives
  • Business requirements
  • Workshop – Identifying Business Requirements
  • Performing root cause analysis
  • Technique: The 5 Whys
  • Technique: The Fishbone Diagram
  • Workshop – Performing Root Cause Analysis
  • The Business Model
  • Developing the Business Case
  • Workshop – Create a Business Model

Section 4: Stakeholder Analysis

  • What is a stakeholder?
  • The importance of stakeholder analysis
  • Building relationships
  • Tips for identifying stakeholders
  • Stakeholder identification
  • Keeping track of stakeholders
  • Template: Stakeholder Map
  • Workshop – Identifying Stakeholders

Section 5: Developing the Solution Vision and Scope

  • Purpose of defining the vision and scope of a project
  • What is brainstorming/brainwriting?
  • Conducting brainstorming sessions
  • Brainstorming usage considerations
  • Finding system boundaries
  • The Context Diagram
  • Actors and key information
  • Workshop - Draw a Context Diagram
  • What is a feature?
  • Identifying key features
  • Workshop - Defining Scope with Features

Section 6: Understanding Requirements and Business Rules

  • What is a requirement?
  • The four basic requirement types
  • Business, Stakeholder, Solution, and Transition requirements
  • Defining Assumptions and constraints
  • What are Business rules?
  • Taxonomy of business rules
  • Technique: The Decision Table
  • How to write simple calculations
  • Workshop - Describe a Business Rule using a Decision Table
  • Requirements vs. business rules
  • Workshop – Writing Requirements

Section 7: Business Process Modeling

  • Why do we model processes?
  • What is Business Process Management?
  • Basic Process Modeling Notation (UML)
  • "As Is" vs. "To Be" modeling
  • Developing a business process model
  • Using a facilitated session
  • Business Process Modeling – A case study
  • Developing a Business Process Model
  • Workshop – Create a Business Process Model

Section 8: Preparing for Requirements Elicitation

  • What is requirements elicitation?
  • Interviewing – what and why?
  • Preparing for an effective interview
  • Types of questions to ask
  • Sequencing of questions
  • Active listening techniques
  • Workshop – Planning for an Interview

Section 9: Conducting an Elicitation Session

  • Best practices when conducting an interview
  • Selecting the interviewees
  • Active listening techniques
  • Feedback techniques
  • Workshop – Conducting an Interview
  • Other elicitation techniques to consider
  • Technique: Requirements Workshop
  • The role of the facilitator
  • Avoiding groupthinking
  • Encourage participation
  • Managing conflict
  • Technique: Brainstorming
  • Utilizing User Stories
  • Workshop – Identifying User Stories

Section 10: Confirming Elicitation Results

  • Performing requirements analysis
  • Prioritizing requirements (MoSCoW, Timeboxing, Voting, etc.)
  • Specifying and modeling requirements using UML
  • Verifying requirements and acquiring approval
  • Communicating Requirements
  • Workshop – Obtaining Approval

Section 11: Analyzing Requirements with Use Cases

  • What is an Actor?
  • Types of Actors
  • How to "find" Use Cases?
  • Diagramming Use Cases
  • Tips on naming Use Cases
  • Workshop – Drawing a Use Case Diagram
  • What are scenarios?
  • Template: Use Case Specification
  • Scenario examples
  • Workshop – Writing the Main Success Scenario
  • Scenarios and flows
  • Alternate and exception flows
  • Best practices for writing Use Cases
  • Exercise – Writing Alternate and Exception Scenarios

Section 12: Documenting Requirements

  • How requirements relate to Use Cases
  • Writing Non-Functional requirements
  • User Interface Requirements - Storyboarding and Wireframing
  • Workshop – Develop a User Interface
  • Template: UI data table
  • Reporting requirements
  • Data requirements
  • Data accessibility requirements
  • Preparing the requirements package
  • Business Analysis deliverables
  • Exercise – Analyze and Document Requirements

Sction 13: Managing and Communicating Requirements

  • Requirements Management and Communication
  • General communication
  • Technique: Presentations
  • Technique: Structured Walkthrough
  • The 7 C's of Communication
  • Information Mapping
  • Symptoms of information overload
  • Conflict and issue management
  • Conflict Resolution techniques

Section 14: Assessing Requirements

  • Solution Assessment & Validation
  • Verifying requirements
  • Quality attributes of well-written requirements
  • Assessing Organizational Readiness
  • Defining Transition Requirements
  • Verification vs. Validation
  • Workshop - Verifying Requirements
  • The requirements traceability matrix (RTM)
  • Exercise: Creating an RTM

Section 15: Additional Information

  • Useful books and links on Requirements Management




Foundations of Business Analysis of Business Analysis

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