Communicating the value of the business analyst – part 1

In this and the next few posts I would like to communicate the value of business analysis in plain English.

I cannot overstate how important it is to be able to communicate your value quickly and effectively to all of the people you work with.

I knew that I had cracked it when when my mother and father-in-law both understood. This is not mean to be an ageist comment, merely a reflection of the fact that our industry is full of jargon that is very confusing for the man and woman on the street.

I started with a message of the value that I wanted to communicate:

Ensure the project driven has defined a clear business benefit that is aligned with the organisation’s strategy.

The plain english variety

This is still full of jargon so my next attempt was a simplified version of this:

Make the changes that make the business better (increases profits/cost reduction/regulation) and matter most to the business.

This sounded a lot clearer but it was suggested I should provide a visual analogy to bring the benefit to life.

I commissioned an animation to illustrate this using a simple example that everyone can recognise:

I will provide some more animations in future posts to illustrate the other benefits of business analysis.

Let me know whether you think this captures one of the benefits of business analysis. Feel free to use this to communicate the benefit of business analysis with your boss, your partners or any elderly relatives!!

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2 Responses to “Communicating the value of the business analyst – part 1”

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  1. Michael says:

    Hi Alex,

    great post and some good food for thought. I wonder if the value statement in your article above should be about “Understanding” the change required as opposed to “Making” the change?

    Using your example in the animation, could a valid solution be to not travel at all as the time / cost of the options investigated does not stack up with the benefits sort?

    Cheers, Michael

    • Alex Papworth says:

      Thanks Michael. Interesting comment on Make vs Understanding. It’s fascinating how important it is to select exactly the right words…

      Understanding seems too passive for my taste whereas I can see that Make implies our role is greater than it is. After all, we are part of a team.

      I think it’s more important to make a clear, strong statement. You can always qualify this when you explain this to your customers…
      I’m sure this is one debate that isn’t closed!!

      Your point about not travelling is a very valid one. In my next animation, this will come up as one of two examples is where there is next to no budget (so the solution requires some creative thinking).
      But of course you are correct that sometimes we should be encouraging no investment because the benefits do not justify the investment.

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