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This preview shows page 1 - 8 out of pages. Understanding the Strategic Context Project Discipline Analysing Stakeholder Perspectives Analysing and Modelling Business Activities
Analysing Stakeholder Perspectives Analysing and Modelling Business Activities Identifying Potential Solutions Making the Business Case Examination Hints and Tips Post Test Answers Definition Where a word with a very specific definition or one that could be described as jargon is introduced this will highlight that a definition is provided.
Expansion materials This manual contains examinable materials. Skip over these during class. They are not needed for the examination. Helpful hint This icon guides you to tips or hints that will help you avoid the standard pitfalls that await the unwary practitioner or to show you how you might increase your effectiveness or efficiency in practising what you have learned.
Important idea or concept Generally this icon is used to draw your attention to ideas that you need to understand by this point in the course. Let your trainer know if you do not understand or see the relevance of this idea or concept. The phrasing of each question should also receive careful consideration, and it is a good idea to test questions out on a small sample of respondents before using the questionnaire more widely.
Some poorly phrased questions may, in fact, be impossible to answer sensibly, and this can antagonise respondents — and cause them not to complete the questionnaire. Even if most of a questionnaire contains closed or limited-choice questions, respondents should be given some open questions, or at least be allowed some comments, so that they can qualify their responses; otherwise, they may feel that their views are being inaccurately represented, which, again, can worsen the response rate.
However, online surveys must be carefully designed for ease of use and navigation. The best principles of good web design should be followed in the creation of online surveys. Description of the technique Sampling is one of the techniques that can be used to obtain quantitative data during a business analysis assignment — particularly data about how people spend their time.
This is valuable because it enables the BA to understand where the real problems and issue lie, and it also provides input to the business case for change. One of the problems with the information gleaned from interviews and workshops Techniques 13 and 14 is that it is, to some extent, subjective — it represents the views and opinions of individuals.
Observation will help to put these views into perspective, but there is nothing like measurement to get to the real heart of a problem. We may also employ special-purpose records to get quantitative data, but, as we show in the description of Technique 18, they do rather depend on the memory and the goodwill of the people completing them; the memory in that they need to remember to complete them, and the goodwill in that they have to complete them accurately.
Before embarking on a sampling exercise the BA needs to prepare the ground. To do this: Talk to the managers of the department or area concerned, and also the people working there, to explain the purpose of the exercise. Where the workforce is unionised, the agreement of the trade union representatives will also be needed. Find out what activities are likely to be seen during the sampling period, and check whether the period is a reasonably typical one not hitting an atypical year-end period, for instance.
Decide the sampling interval. To get a reasonable picture of the work, something like once every 15 minutes is usually good enough. Based on this information a sheet like that in Figure 2. This is to avoid the possible problem where the intervals coincide with some regular process and thus give a skewed result.
We can see in our example that the averages settle down quite well after three days, so that probably gives us a reasonable picture of the pattern of work. We can combine sampling data with information gleaned from other sources to measure transaction times. For example, during the three-day exercise shown in Figure 2. Two issues that do worry people with sampling are that being watched in this way can be unnerving for the workers, and that the workers may behave atypically particularly by working faster or slower than usual precisely because they are being measured.
Description of the technique Often in business analysis work it is useful to gather quantitative as well as qualitative data. For example, if we are examining the work of a complaints-handling section, it would be useful to know how many complaints are made, what they are about, how long it takes to respond to them, and so forth. One method of getting such data is to conduct an activity-sampling exercise Technique However, activity sampling is time-consuming for the analyst and can be unnerving to the people being studied.
The use of special-purpose records, whereby business users keep a tally of what they have been doing, is an alternative way of collecting such information.
Let us continue to use a complaints-handling section as our example. We could devise a special-purpose record for it, which in its simplest form might look like that shown in Figure 2.
In Figure 2. To identify these we would previously have conducted an interview with the section manager, or perhaps held a workshop with some members of the section. A more elaborate timesheet is shown in Figure 2.
Using special-purpose records The most obvious downside of special-purpose records is that they may not be completed accurately. One reason for this is that people forget to do it until the end of the day — probably because they are very busy doing their actual work — and then just make something up to keep the pesky BA happy!
Document analysis Description of the technique Document analysis is the systematic examination of data sources, usually forms, but also screen layouts and reports if there is an existing system, to analyse the data requirements of a proposed computerised information system. The starting point for document analysis is to discover worthwhile data sources to examine.
In the early days of IT, such sources would always be physical things, usually forms, ledgers and so forth. Today, where one is more likely to be moving from an existing IT system to a newer one, the range of sources can also include screens and reports from the current system. The information shown on each document is examined systematically and recorded on a form like that shown in Figure 2. We also record how it is currently prepared — in this case by hand.
The remaining information to be recorded includes: Filing sequence: Training record sheet Project file reference: Doc 10 Stationery ref: Form TR01 Size: A4 landscape Filing sequence: Alphabetical by surname Storage medium: HR clerk or HR manager When created: When employee joins Retention period: HR Department Volumes per: Month Minimum: Review training Review training Appraisal To check Frequency of use: As required As required Annually As required Data item: Value range: Sources of data: Name Alphanumeric Record of training courses attended by employees Number of parts: Not applicablevolume fairly static Not used Storage medium: Here we show who records the information initially and who maintains it.
Again this gives us information about who will need to have access rights once the system is computerised. When created: This helps to identify the business event that causes the information to be recorded initially.
Now we begin to understand how long information will need to be held and to be available in our computerised system. Storage location: Here we can record the number of new documents per month, per year or whatever, and what the overall growth in numbers is. This, clearly, is of some importance in working out how much space must be reserved in the system for the data. Apart from the people who record the information initially, we are also interested in who needs to access it and for what reason.
Data item information: This is extremely useful in modelling the data for the proposed system for details of which, see Techniques 63 and 64, entity relationship modelling and class modelling , and, again, in sizing the proposed system.
Using document analysis Some commonsense has to be used in the selection of data sources to be documented in this way. We do not necessarily need to examine every form, screen or report currently used. Some BAs may feel that such detailed work on data is not really part of their job, leaving this to the systems analysts or even the developers.
Rich pictures Description of the technique Rich pictures were popularised in the soft systems methodology, put forward by Professor Peter Checkland and his associates in the s Checkland The idea is to capture in pictorial form the essential elements of a business issue or problem, to facilitate a more holistic understanding and analysis of it.
There are no rules as to what may or could be captured in a rich picture, nor about what symbols should be used, so it is a very free-format technique indeed. Typically, though, the sorts of things we want to represent in a rich picture include: For example, is it true that the factory does a worse job than do outside suppliers, or does this just represent the prejudices of the salespeople?
Some people love the freedom of expression they permit, and relish the way they avoid the tedium of long textual descriptions of problems and issues. It is also true that not everyone is equally gifted with drawing skills. Drawing is essential to the use of rich pictures, but if one cannot, for example, draw people as in Figure 2. An element of this may be related to organisational culture, too: We are not so sure, however, that rich pictures necessarily provide a particularly good method of communication back to the business stakeholders, since what is clear to the author of a rich picture may be very obscure to someone else viewing it.
Again, this might depend on the culture of the organisation being studied. We would urge BAs at least to give rich pictures a try, to see if they will work for them, in their environment. This example uses only words, but mind maps can be even more powerful if images are used as well or instead.
When using it to support interviewing, the BA can create the outline mind map — the trunk and main branches only — from the agenda and then populate the rest of the diagram with information supplied by the interviewee. Because only a few words need to be written down, this can simplify note taking and allow for greater eye contact with the subject. When it is used during a workshop, the facilitator can create the mind map as participants suggest ideas.
Not everyone gets on with mind maps. Certainly they provide focus, clarity and brevity where more conventional notes, though containing the information, sometimes obscure key issues with irrelevant detail.
Our advice would be to try the technique — and maybe persist with it for a while if it is not instantly accessible. It just shows the existence of a relationship between the system and the actor. Using context diagrams Context diagrams can be developed by BAs based on the research they have done through interviews, workshops and so forth. Having drawn a diagram a BA then needs to review it with the various actors to check that it does represent their understanding of how they will use the proposed system.
However, context diagrams are also a powerful tool for use during a workshop with the various stakeholders Technique Alternatively participants can be invited to come up and add actors themselves.
If time permits, the group can then go on to explore the types of function within the system with which each actor will interact — and thus begin to develop a more detailed use case diagram Technique Buzan, T. BBC Active, London. Checkland, P. Wiley, Chichester. DeMarco, T. Rumsey, D. Wiley, Hoboken. TSO, London. Wood, M. A Non-mathematical Approach. Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke.
Yourdon, E. Skidmore, S. Townsend, J. Management Pocketbooks, London. Yeates, D. FT Prentice Hall, Harlow. Stakeholders can support or resist change, they can clarify or confuse requirements, and they have knowledge that the analyst needs to acquire. Once an investigation of the business situation has been carried out the BA needs to take time to think through the issues that have been raised.
At this point thinking through the information gained and the perspectives of those providing that information can be invaluable in uncovering inconsistencies, hidden agendas and personal priorities. Failing to think about these points, or delaying this thinking until a problem arises, can derail or undermine later work.
This is done in order to identify the stakeholders within these groups who may have working links or interests with the area under investigation. There are three techniques that are used to identify the stakeholders for a particular business analysis assignment: Many initiatives have been derailed when an alternative point of view has emerged, sometimes at a late stage. It is important to carry out this analysis, since this will provide a means of deciding the stakeholder management strategies to be adopted.
There are four major techniques that are used to analyse stakeholders: Analysing stakeholders is the key to working well with them. This is essential if business analysis work is to be successful in delivering business improvements. Early analysis of stakeholders can prevent the occurrence of many problems, in particular: Stakeholder management Techniques 30—32 Stakeholder management provides the basis for ongoing work with the stakeholders during a project.
It involves identifying and implementing management strategies that enable analysts to deal with a range of stakeholders. These management strategies are based upon the categorisation that has been carried out during stakeholder analysis. They have to be supplemented by additional techniques that help during the stakeholder management process.
Three techniques that help with managing stakeholders are covered in this section: Stakeholder nomination Description of the technique It is relatively easy to identify an initial set of stakeholders, and this is done mainly through stakeholder nomination. Using stakeholder nomination This approach usually works in a hierarchical fashion: Sometimes the sponsor or managers will identify people who are sympathetic to their views and ideas, resulting in a limited analysis with the risk that important details are omitted.
Description of the technique There are many reasons for initiating a business analysis project. These include a change in business strategy, a request from a senior manager, changes to a related business area, and legal or regulatory changes. One may even follow on from a feasibility study. This usually means that documentation exists to explain why the business analysis is required.
There may also be a Terms of Reference statement for the study, or formal project documentation such as a Project Initiation Document. Examining such documentation will often provide information that will help the analyst uncover a wide range of stakeholders, including those working outside the area under investigation.
Using background research It is important to locate the documents that could be helpful in identifying stakeholders, and sometimes these are not obvious.
If there are pre-project or project documents then they should be made available to the analyst. Other documents that are often found within organisations and can be useful when identifying stakeholders are Organisation Charts or Project Structures.
The Organisation Charts will show where stakeholders sit in the organisation, and can be the source of valuable information. This diagram includes an analysis of the external suppliers of resources to the organisation, and the customer groups that receive products, services and information. The breakdown shown for these groups can provide a great deal of insight into these stakeholders and their perspectives. In addition, the diagram shows the organisations that are competitors, some of whom may be stakeholders for a particular business analysis assignment.
While this can generate knowledge about many stakeholders, there is a danger that the focus will be on the internal ones, and that some stakeholders may be missed and, as a result, their viewpoints might not be considered. The stakeholder wheel is shown in Figure 3.
The groups in the wheel are: These are the senior and middle managers with responsibility for running the organisation, monitoring progress and delivering the results required by the owners. This group covers external bodies that set and enforce regulations to which the organisation must adhere.
External organisations or individuals that provide products and services to the organisation are listed as suppliers. These are other organisations that work with the organisation being analysed, to deliver complementary or supplementary products and services.
This group consists of other organisations that deliver their version of the products and services to the same set of customers.
Figure 3. In essence, the wheel is a form of checklist that helps the analysts ensure that stakeholder groups are not missed. While, initially, the BA will focus on the internal stakeholders, it is important that analysts look beyond the internal organisation and consider external stakeholders. The external stakeholders are often less obvious to identify, and this is where the stakeholder wheel can help enormously by setting out the key groups to examine.
For example, the suppliers might seem obvious — the other organisations that supply products and services to ours. If, for example, an organisation is involved with arranging conferences, the suppliers could be varied and numerous — including suppliers of food products, keynote speakers and venues.
When planning changes to the organisation one would have to consider whether these suppliers would be impacted by those changes, and how interested they would be in them. A high impact is likely to ensure a high level of interest. It is possible that some impacts might mean the loss of particular suppliers, and if there is the potential for this to happen, it is vital that it be taken into account as early as possible.
The loss of an excellent conference venue would cause a great deal of additional work for the organisation in our example. The key stakeholders who need to be managed actively. These are the people who need to be kept informed of each step in the project, and whose views need to be taken into account.
They will be instrumental in achieving the project outcomes. Typically the stakeholders who will have to operate the new business system. This may lead to changes to their roles, responsibilities and skill requirements. Consequently these stakeholders are highly interested in the changes that they will encounter — or even have imposed upon them.
The stakeholders who are on the fringes of the study. However, these stakeholders, while being interested in the ways in which the organisation works with them, are unlikely to be concerned about, or even aware of, its internal operations.
Level of power Figure 3. It divides the stakeholders and the management strategies into more categories. These are the key stakeholders who require constant, active communication and management. Careful management of stakeholders with this level of power is needed, so that any of their interventions serve to support the work rather than add further complication. These stakeholders may be far removed from the area of study, or may be too senior for it to have reached their notice. However, within organisations there are often incidents that bring seemingly minor issues to the attention of more senior stakeholders: For these reasons it is important that analysts be aware of the stakeholders in this category, and ensure that they are not provoked into action where it is not desired.
These stakeholders often include middle managers from across the organisation, or some of the more important customers and suppliers. External regulators may also fall within this category. It is important to be aware of these stakeholders and keep a watchful eye on their interest and opinions. As before, it may be that we want to manage their level of interest such that they provide support when required.
They need to be kept informed, and, if possible, kept on side. While they generally have little power individually, their power can increase dramatically if the analysts require assistance from them to obtain detailed information, and the implementation of changes can be severely compromised without their help. It has been said that in the absence of information chaos develops; this should be borne in mind with regard to these stakeholders, since their worries and concerns may extend far beyond the reality.
Since the latter is an expansion of the former, we will look at the six possible categories: Manage actively: They need to be closely involved at all stages of the project and in any key decisions.
If a recommendation is to be made, these stakeholders need to be aware of the recommendation, and should have approved its inclusion in the list. They should support any proposals made. The stakeholder management strategy to be used here involves the analysts working continuously and closely with these key players. Nothing should come as a surprise to them in a public forum; all recommendations should have been discussed with them, and actions agreed, in advance.
They need be kept informed where necessary so that they do not begin to develop an unhelpful interest in aspects of the project — and possibly delay, or even reverse, progress. This may require analysts to hold meetings with these stakeholders, or at the very least talk to them, in order to explain the desired course of action and take note of any issues or objections.
These stakeholders are usually at such a senior level that the business analysis work is of little interest to them. However, care needs to be taken to ensure that they do not have their interest aroused.
Keep onside: These are the medium power stakeholders, with a range of levels of interest from low to high. Keep informed: These are the stakeholders in the low power and medium to high interest category.
If people know change is coming without any idea of the nature and extent of that change, then the rumour mill can begin and all sorts of scenarios be imagined. It is far better to ensure that there is regular communication with these stakeholders so that they are kept as informed as possible.
These are the stakeholders with low power and low interest. The changes are likely to have little impact upon them, and hence they do not require a great deal of consideration at the moment.
Stakeholder analysis needs to be carried out regularly throughout the project, since stakeholders are liable to move around the grid.
Others may become more powerful, possibly through internal promotion or transfer. With the advent of internet communication and the availability of networking systems, it is all too possible for individuals to form a pressure group and gain a lot more power very quickly.
This version of the grid helps to identify how to manage the stakeholders by recognising the level of impact the change will have upon them and the level of control power they have over the situation. Description of the technique One of the key reasons for managing relationships with stakeholders is to ensure that we understand their ideas, priorities and wishes before we put forward recommendations, or, even worse, implement business changes. Understanding what the key players want is vital if the work is to go in the right direction.
The following quotation explains why this is so important. Alice in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll One of the most important features of stakeholder analysis involves uncovering the direction each stakeholder believes the organisation should take.
The CATWOE technique was created by Professor Peter Checkland and his team at Lancaster University Checkland and is an excellent approach to understanding what the stakeholders value and the impact this will have on the direction of the project. The acronym represents the following elements: A common example to look at is the world view of sales people. This centres on selling and earning commission.
When the sales team thinks about what the business system under consideration should be, their focus is on making sales in order to ensure that as much commission as possible is paid. If this is the world view, it follows logically that the transformation is to take a customer, make a sale and produce a customer who has made a download.
The next natural progression is to identify the customer targeted by the transformation. This can be a critical part of using the technique, since it can uncover exactly where the focus of the stakeholder lies. This valuable aspect of the technique is therefore completely dismissed, and may as well be left uncompleted. The owner of the business system under consideration is the next entry. Something to remember is that a business system targets external customers, and these customers must be willing to take part in the system for it to be able to operate.
This willingness to take part can be seen as a constraint in the environment. As an example, a CATWOE could be developed to analyse the perspective of the operations director of a high-street clothes store. In this instance, the director feels the business will succeed if the focus is on designing and selling inexpensive fashionable clothing, because this is what is desired by the target market — young consumers who are interested in fashion.
This director does not include the manufacture of the clothes in the world view. The owner could be the director, but for a high-street store is more likely to be the board of the company. The environment will include factors such as the economic situation, market desire for inexpensive fashion and consumer concerns over fair trade issues.
It is sometimes useful to consider all of the CATWOE elements, and this is particularly the case when the analyst is trying to use stakeholder perspectives to derive conceptual models of business activities. It is often a means of uncovering the root causes of disagreements.
The company operates against the background of the economic situation, the market desire for inexpensive fashion, and consumer concern over fair trade issues E. Related terms include the conceptual model and the logical activity model. The model shows these high-level activities and the logical dependencies between them.
This conceptual, or idealised, view can then be compared with the actual situation perhaps captured in a rich picture — Technique 20 to identify areas where, potentially, the performance of the organisation could be improved.
In a business analysis project, the BAM is created after the initial investigation of the situation has taken place and the stakeholder perspectives have been analysed. The high-level activities represented in the BAM can, if this is useful, be examined in more detail through business process models or swimlane diagrams Technique The BAM is built at the level of what the organisation does, not how it does it which is more the province of business process models.
These are the primary tasks of the organisation — the things that it has been set up to do. These activities obtain and, where relevant, replenish the resources needed to perform the primary task. Resources include people, materials, customers and so forth.
In building a BAM, it is assumed that the basic strategic planning has already taken place. These activities monitor the achievement of the performance measures that have been set during the planning activities. Also, performance monitoring can only take place once the business system has undertaken some primary task activity. Finally, there is little use in monitoring progress unless controlling action is also taken if something is not going according to plan. Over the years we have come to favour the second approach, since, in a real-world situation, managers usually take action on the basis of issues that concern several areas of performance.
This indicates that controlling action feeds back into the model wherever it is necessary. Using business activity modelling There is no universally agreed convention for the symbols used on a BAM.
It is a good idea to avoid rectangles or squares, which make the diagram look too much like a conventional process model. What these resources are will vary from one organisation to another, but typically they will include some of these: It is good practice to give each activity an active name in the form of a verb followed by a noun. It needs to be appreciated that what is being built in a BAM is a conceptual model of the activities we the BAs would expect to see in place, given the business perspective and particularly the world view from which it has been created.
It is emphatically not a model of what is happening now in the organisation. This, in turn, means that the BAs must seek to divorce themselves from what is happening now and use their creativity and business knowledge to think about what, conceptually, should be going on. The best thing to do next is to hold a workshop with these stakeholders and facilitate a discussion in order to develop the BAM that represents a consensus view of the business. If no agreement can be obtained this way, it may be necessary to refer the issue to the project sponsor, or even more senior management, for a decision on the way forward.
The stakeholder roles are plotted along the top of the matrix, and the set of tasks along the vertical axis. Each task is then analysed using the RASCI headings to determine the role of each stakeholder with regard to that task. The RASCI chart helps the analysts understand the stakeholder responsibilities and identify who should be approached in a given situation.
RASCI charts also help the analyst to ensure that all stakeholders are clear about their roles and their responsibilities. For example, if a stakeholder is said to be in the Consulted category, it may be useful to list all of the responsibilities that this brings. Identify the areas of work to be carried out. Allocate each area of work to a row on the chart. It is useful to choose an active verb when naming a task.
Identify the stakeholders who will be involved in the project or business process. Allocate each stakeholder to a column, and annotate each column along the top of the chart. For example, identify the stakeholder who is Accountable for the task, the stakeholder who is Supportive of the task, and so on.
Is someone Accountable for each task? Is a stakeholder Responsible for completing the work of each task? Is there a stakeholder who has too much responsibility? Are there stakeholders who can be Consulted about tasks? It is accepted good practice to have only one stakeholder Responsible for each task, since this indicates that there is an owner for the task.
However, an analysis of all stakeholders or stakeholder groups would be time consuming and, more importantly, would result in a lot of diverging views that could cloud the real issues. As analysts are usually working within a limited timescale, information about categories is extremely useful to help prioritise this more detailed stakeholder analysis work. Stakeholders are not automatons who will always behave in a predictable manner and can be treated in a generic fashion.
Some time spent thinking about what stakeholders value in a situation, and considering their priorities, can provide excellent insights into how they need to be approached, what information they require and which concerns should be taken into account. Sometimes there is a need to split activities in this way, but usually it is better to work at a higher level of aggregation.
Another problem is that practitioners can confuse this approach with building process models. As we have explained, the BAM shows what is going on, whereas a process model explores how. This set of techniques supports various aspects of stakeholder analysis. A stakeholder management plan provides a means of capturing all of the information, and setting out the actions to be taken with regard to each stakeholder.
The plan consists of an assessment for each one, and the areas to be included in each assessment are as follows: Name of stakeholder: Champion or Advocate: Desired support: This might include regular meetings and formal written reports. Using stakeholder management planning The stakeholder management plan is used to summarise all of the important information about an individual stakeholder or a group. The stakeholder management plan helps the project team decide the most appropriate means of communicating with the stakeholders, and the timing, duration and frequency.
Key stakeholders will be part of a regular, ongoing communication process, typically combining meetings with written communications. Some powerful stakeholders will need to be treated with care to ensure that their priorities are understood and addressed, even if this means managing their expectations towards alternative solutions.
Less powerful stakeholder groups will also need to be considered carefully, to ensure that communication with them is as informative as possible, and the amount of support retained for the project is maximised. Their priorities and beliefs may change. For these reasons, the stakeholder management plan needs to be kept under review and the analysts need to be alert to any changes that should be handled. An example of an extract from a stakeholder management plan is shown in Table 3.
Keen to develop web-based marketing approach; sponsoring the change programme to develop this. Likes original and creative ideas. Attitude Champion Desired support High level of support required and will be provided. Desired role Has been allocated Project Sponsor role and is likely to be proactive in performing this role. Desired actions Needs to ensure that the Board are informed and support the project.
Needs to ensure that resources, in particular the operations staff, are made available to the project when required. Messages to convey Need to emphasise understanding of his requirements, in particular those related to delivering web-based marketing using innovative concepts.
Gain agreement. This model is shown in Figure 3. Unassertive and uncooperative. This can be appropriate in minor situations, but where another stakeholder feels there is a genuine issue, anyone taking this stance may be perceived to be awkward and to be failing to address the issue.
Unassertive and cooperative. People taking an accommodating position may be content with this approach, but might feel sometimes that their voices are unheard, even when they make good suggestions. A history of accommodating can exacerbate this situation, such that they are habitually ignored by the other stakeholders.
Assertive and uncooperative. Moderately assertive and moderately cooperative. This is often the approach that people recommend — meeting all parties in the middle. However, some stakeholders, particularly those with a competing preference, do not like compromise since it means giving ground on some issues. One view of compromise is that everybody loses, although a more positive view is that everyone gains something.
If this is not the case, then resentments can fester in the longer term. Assertive and cooperative. Creative suggestions that provide alternatives to those put forward by the stakeholders can provide the basis for collaborative solutions. However, it is not always possible to achieve this, and in such situations a compromise may the best outcome that can be achieved.
The Thomas—Kilmann approach sets out three other possible positions, and helps to encourage participants to consider other options that might provide a route to consensus. Positioning the avoiding, collaboration and compromise approaches so clearly adds alternatives to the two extreme positions and can form an excellent starting point for debate. If the issue is minor it might be resolved over time, and an avoidance position could be the best approach. If one stakeholder feels very strongly about a particular point of view and the others are less concerned, it may be easier to allow that stakeholder to carry the day.
Principled negotiation Description of the technique The principled negotiation technique was developed by William Ury and Roger Fisher Fisher and Ury Consider the people and separate them from the problem.
People often set out their positions rather than the reasons behind these positions. Examining the interests involves asking questions and uncovering the reasons behind the positions. Consider a variety of options before making any decisions.
People often set out what they want the solution to be, rather than the problem that needs to be addressed. While the suggested solution may be feasible, there might be alternatives that address a wider range of needs.
Set criteria upon which the decision will be based. Agreed criteria will provide an objective approach to selecting the way forward. The discussion focuses on why they cannot move or change position, and the more they justify this, the greater becomes their sense of being right.
Principled negotiation attempts to avoid this situation developing. Unfortunately this is not uncommon; the people and the problem become entangled as one, and the negotiation process includes emotional responses to practical issues. This blame focus can be very destructive, and can harm working relationships with colleagues and stakeholders.
There are three aspects to consider about the people: How do the people view the situation? While this may not change the other views, it will lead to a greater understanding, and perhaps open up ideas that will address the issue.
The way that people feel during negotiations can often be as relevant as what they say. It can be very valuable to acknowledge those feelings and recognise that they are important. This means using clear language that will encourage everyone to contribute. Active listening is vital, not only to help with understanding but also to foster good working relationships. This can be a great help in providing a positive basis for negotiations. Additional ways to communicate well during negotiations include: Sometimes the interests are common to the other stakeholders in the group, so an area of agreement is found.
We can begin to consider options to address the situation, once the interests of the parties have been explored.
Brainstorming see Technique 14 can be useful here, because it can help to increase creativity and encourage the suspension of judgement.
This last point is critical if people are to be engaged in identifying options without fear of criticism or objections. Where options meet shared interests and provide mutual gains there can be a basis for compromise or even collaboration. The BATNA approach helps stakeholders to consider other alternatives, by thinking about what else they could do if the negotiation does not meet their needs.
For example, someone selling a house needs to decide at what price it would be better to take an alternative course of action such as building an extension, or even consider rental options. This approach helps everyone focus on producing a true standard against which any proposed agreement can be measured. It is extremely helpful to think about this in advance and have it in mind during the negotiation. Sometimes in negotiation situations people feel under pressure to accept the deal that is on the table, only to regret this afterwards.
Deciding on a BATNA in advance helps protect them against being pressurised into accepting the unacceptable. This is the limit at which it is time to stop negotiating and consider whether the BATNA would be preferable.
This is an excellent sanity check that helps avoid rash decisions. There are many aspects to stakeholder management, and the techniques described here provide approaches that will help with some of them.
John Wiley and Sons, Chichester. Fisher, R. Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In. Hutchinson, London. Patching, D. Pitman Publishing, London.
Ury, W. Random House, London. This typically involved analysing and documenting the existing situation and then adding in additional requirements that would solve current problems. Although this view of business analysis often gave rise to incremental improvement, it did not take account of broader stakeholder visions for the business system.
As a result, the focus on addressing problems meant that greater opportunities were sometimes missed. Over time business analysis work has evolved to take account of approaches based upon systemic thinking. The framework shown in Figure 4. Figure 4. This chapter explores a range of techniques that support this approach, and covers the following areas: This section presents the following techniques to help with this analysis: Business process analysis complements this view by providing a representation of how activities are carried out.
The business process models are underpinned by an understanding of the business events the organisation has to deal with and the business rules that constrain the operations. The techniques covered in this section are: Actions will need to be taken to close the gaps and thereby change the business system.
These actions can be formed into options for business change, which are evaluated in order to decide the best way forward. This information is essential when considering business process improvements. Value proposition analysis Description of the technique Value propositions are the customer perspectives with regard to an organisation.
They summarise why customers choose to work with certain organisations, and what the customers want from each of them. Where there is a competitive market the value propositions also help to identify why a customer would download from one supplier rather than another. One group requires a supermarket where the prices are competitive and the range of products extensive. To another group, reasonable prices are important, but high product quality is vital.
A third group requires a supermarket that is local and does not require them to travel. Price is a factor, but location and ease of travel are more important. Understanding value propositions can be extremely helpful when improving processes, since they highlight what the recipients of the processes consider important.
Customers tend to fall into three categories: Owners or senior managers: These are the individuals or groups who have invested in the organisation and those who are responsible for running it; in some cases they are the same people. In a private-sector organisation the owners are the people who expect a return on their investment, usually in the form of dividends.
In a public-sector organisation the owners are the ministers responsible for the areas covered by its activities — for example, state pensions. They are interested in wise spending of a tight budget, and in the ability of the organisation to generate funding for future spending on good causes.
Partners or resellers: These are the representatives from intermediary companies who work collaboratively with the organisation to sell or deliver the products or services. End customers: They have a direct interest in what they pay for the goods, and in the quality of products and services that the organisation delivers.
For example, an end customer will require an organisation to provide a product that is usable, received when promised and priced at an acceptable level. A comparison of these factors may cause customers to switch suppliers if they feel their value proposition is better met elsewhere. Value proposition analysis is used to highlight what an organisation, or part of one, is required to deliver by its customers.
It is vital that the analysts are aware of the value propositions when they are analysing and improving the business processes, since this will enable them to ensure that any improvements meet the needs of the customers. Sometimes organisations are focused on processes that support internal requirements, such as cost reduction.
The value chain is a useful technique for business analysts who are working on business process improvement assignments. The original value chain devised by Porter is shown in Figure 4.
For example, in a manufacturing company the activities may be considered as follows: Inbound logistics: While this is a useful approach for a manufacturing company, an amended view of the value chain primary activities is required if we are using it to analyse a service organisation: However, the value chain also includes areas that comprise support activities.
They are: If analysts are required to investigate the support activities, the approach we recommend is to model the value chain of the support activity area.
Having started with this, the next area to look at is the inbound logistics. These are all examples of activities that should be carried out in order to examine the candidates. There are two separate aspects to this. First we need to think about the promotional and market research activities; secondly we need to consider the sales activity. The sales area would be concerned with signing up candidates rather than the more traditional sales activity of taking an order or a booking.
The value chain would then look as shown in Figure 4. This model also enables the analyst to consider, typically with the business managers, the areas that are of high priority or are known to be struggling.
Further analysis of an area of process can be carried out using supplementary techniques such as business event analysis and business process modelling Techniques 36 and Both of these are described later in this chapter.
The Organisation Diagram pulls together the external business environment and the internal value chain, and provides a view of the high-level processes and the forces that impinge upon the successful delivery of the value chain. Four aspects of the external environment are modelled: Competition for customers An Organisation Diagram helps to show what the organisation is facing in its external environment.
In the example in Figure 4. The Organisation Diagram is completed by showing the value chain within the box representing the organisation. The discussion and thought required to develop the diagram helps to clarify the priorities and issues that the business processes need to address.
The Organisation Diagram itself can be seen as the top level in a business process hierarchy, and therefore provides a context for future process improvement work. Each area of process can be examined separately by considering all of the business processes required to deliver the work of this area.
The value chain also helps with the development of the process hierarchy if each of the value chain processes is allocated a reference number. This number provides a basis for cross-referencing the lower-level, detailed process models and documents. Description of the technique Business events are occurrences to which an organisation needs to respond. For example, if a membership society receives an application from someone wishing to become a member, it will need to be able to respond to this request.
If the Identity and Passport Service receives a passport application, the agency will need to invoke a process to handle this application. In this case the receipt of the passport application is a business event, and the response is the corresponding process. Business event analysis is concerned with examining a business system or an area of activity in order to identify the events the organisation needs to handle. There are three standard types of event, and we usually consider these types as a framework for thinking about events.
External events: External events typically originate from the external stakeholders, so it is often useful to begin by identifying the relevant stakeholders. This approach enables the analyst to identify an initial set of external events, each of which will need to be handled by the organisation. Internal events: Again it is helpful to begin by identifying the stakeholders — this time the relevant internal stakeholders.
A key area concerns decisions. This means that there need to be organisational responses, in the form of business processes, to handle the decisions.
This requires a process to update any records regarding the allocation of the work and to communicate the change to any interested parties.
In this case it will require a process that is longer and more detailed. Examples include a decision to introduce a new pricing structure or a new product range. Time-based events: Time-based events often result from legal regulations or business policy. Another form of time-based event occurs where actions are required in advance of another business event.
For example, there may be a requirement to issue information two weeks prior to a senior management meeting. Business event analysis provides a means of breaking down the work of an organisation or business area into discrete areas. This is invaluable in supporting an organised, structured analysis of the business processes and the tasks they comprise.
Following on from that, the analyst needs to consider the outcomes desired from the events. So the second step is to consider the outcome required once a business event occurs. The third step is to model and analyse the business process that will be triggered by the event and will deliver the outcome.
Business process modelling is the next technique described in this chapter. Using business event analysis Business events provide a framework for analysing business systems. They also help with uncovering tacit knowledge, since they provide a basis for identifying situations that the business user may not have mentioned or even considered important. It is often helpful to begin by building a context diagram like that in Figure 4. Table 4.
As shown above, they can be used to identify processes and partition a business area. The business area under investigation might be a high-level process such as that shown on an Organisation Diagram Technique 35 , or it could be a business activity from a Business Activity Model Technique In these cases the response to the business event will be documented as a business process model or swimlane diagram Technique At a lower level of detail business events can be used during the analysis of the individual tasks or activities from within a business process.
Failing to recognise when a piece of work needs to be carried out can cause problems for organisations. Whether we are dealing with business or system events, there is one constant principle: The response is what the organisation does when it encounters an event; this response may be automated, manual or a combination of both automation and manual action. Other approaches that may be used to analyse the event are scenarios or use cases Techniques 50 and For example, a document is scanned at the start of the process and then various actors are prompted to do something with it.
Description of the technique Business process models show several of the key elements of a business process: