Communicating Business Analysis with Stakeholders
It's important to recognize how to work with stakeholders when communicating business analysis information. There are different approaches to take based on each stakeholder needs:
- Domain subject matter expert (SME) – The domain SME will validate the business analysis information. They need information that is specific to their particular domain and will also require information about goals and objectives of the business in order to ensure that their needs are aligned to the business goals.
- Implementation SME – The implementation SME will use the business analysis information in the form of requirements and designs to implement the solution. He or she may have needs that will result in requirements, such as data integration and nonfunctional requirements.
- Tester – The tester must understand the requirements in order to create test cases. They are excellent sources for information needed to create testable requirements.
- Customer – Customers may need to be communicated with to explain what form the change will take.
- End user – As with customers, the end user needs to be communicated with at the appropriate time to help them adjust to the change and prepare for the new solution. This assists in the adoption of the new solution and allows for a quicker realization of the return on investment around productivity.
- Other stakeholders – Other stakeholders, such as compliance or legal departments, will need to be informed at appropriate times during the project.
Communicated business analysis information
Typically, the BA will communicate with a regulator or compliance expert only when the requirements are at a sufficient level of detail and completion to inform the regulator of how the requirements might be impacted by regulation and to ensure that all business rules are included. Human resources may need to be informed that the roles and responsibilities of stakeholders will change. This will include any union representatives in order to ensure that any process changes and activities within a process align with collective agreements.
Business analysis information is considered to have been communicated when stakeholders understand the content. The BA will know when a stakeholder understands the content when there is some sort of agreement and/or an understanding of the BA's explanation. It's important for the BA to communicate to the stakeholders the implications of the change and the impact the solution will have on the respective departments. This may raise additional concerns, which will require the BA to address those concerns and ensure that the solution is of sufficient value to meet the stakeholders' needs, but not necessarily their wants.