Underlying Competencies

8.0 Overview

  • Behaviors, characteristics, knowledge and personal qualities that support the practice of business analysis
  • Not unique to the business analysis profession
  • Ensure readers are aware of the range of fundamental skills required
  • Basis for investigating further into the skills and knowledge that will enable them to be accomplished

8.1 Analytical Thinking and Problem Solving

8.1.1 Creative Thinking

  1. Purpose – generating new ideas for approaches to problem solving and in generating alternative solutions
  2. Definition –generating new ideas and concepts, identifying and proposing alternatives, promoting creative thinking
  3. Effectiveness Measures – successful generation and productive consideration of new ideas, willingness of stakeholders to accept new approaches

8.1.2 Decision Making

  1. Purpose – understanding the criteria involved in making a decision, assisting others to make better decisions
  2. Definition – be aware of the traps that can impede successful decision-making, sunk cost fallacy, tendency to place greater weight on evidence
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Confidence of the participants in the decision-analysis process

8.1.3 Learning

  1. Purpose – learning about business domains, translate that learning into an understanding of how to benefit an organization
  2. Definition – gaining knowledge or skills, able to synthesize the information to identify opportunities to create new solutions
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Agreement by stakeholders that analysis models effectively and completely describe the domain

8.1.4 Problem Solving

  1. Purpose – defining and solving problems in order to ensure that the real, underlying problem is understood and that solutions actually address that problem
  2. Definition – ensuring that the nature of the problem, underlying issues are visible, assumptions must be identified and tested, aware of a number of problem solving techniques that may be applied
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Confidence of the participants in the problem-solving process that a selected solution is correct, The problem-solving process avoids making decisions based on preconceived notions

8.1.5 Systems Thinking

  1. Purpose – understanding how the people, processes and technology within an organization interact in relationships and patterns to create a system as a whole
  2. Definition – includes the people involved, the interactions between them, the external forces affecting their behavior, and all other relevant elements and factors
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Understanding of how a change to a component affects the system as a whole, how systems adapt to external pressures and changes

8.2 Behavioral Characteristics

8.2.1 Ethics

  1. Purpose – behave ethically in order to earn the trust and respect of stakeholders, recognize when a proposed solution or requirement may present ethical difficulties
  2. Definition – understanding of moral and immoral behavior, identify when an ethical dilemma occurs and understand how such dilemmas may be resolved
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Decisions are made with due consideration to the interests of all stakeholders, Prompt and full disclosure of potential conflicts of interest

8.2.2 Personal Organization

  1. Purpose – effectively managing tasks and information
  2. Definition – readily find files or information, management of outstanding tasks, to-do lists and setting priorities
  3. Effectiveness Measures –The ability of the business analyst to find information, Efficiency in the completion of work

8.2.2 Trustworthiness

  1. Purpose – able to elicit requirements around sensitive issues and to ensure that recommendations are evaluated properly
  2. Definition – offset the inherent distrust based upon the possible effects of change to vested interests in the status quo
  3. Effectiveness Measures –Stakeholders involving the business analyst in decision-making, acceptance of the recommendations

8.3 Business Knowledge

8.3.1 Business Principles and Practices

  1. Purpose – ensure that they are incorporated into and supported by solutions
  2. Definition – Human Resources, Finance, Information Technology, Supply Chain Management, Understanding how other organizations have solved similar challenges can be useful when identifying possible solutions
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Understanding of business environments, operations, Understanding of relevant regulatory, compliance, and governance frameworks

8.3.2 Industry Knowledge

  1. Purpose – understand new challenges that may be posed by competitive moves, and which solutions have proven effective elsewhere
  2. Definition – understanding of the competitive forces that shape an industry, understand the various customer segments that the industry services and the demographic or other characteristics common to that segment
  3. Effectiveness Measures –identify key trends shaping the industry, common products and product types

8.3.3 Organization Knowledge

  1. Purpose – significantly assisted by an understanding of the organization for which it is being performed
  2. Definition – understanding of the business architecture, models, structure and relationships in the organization
  3. Effectiveness Measures –Understanding of terminology , products or services

8.3.4 Solution Knowledge

  1. Purpose – in order to identify the most effective means of implementing a change
  2. Definition – frequently work on projects that involve enhancing an existing solution, or purchasing a commercially available solution, rather than developing entirely new custom solutions, easily identify and recommend changes that can be implemented easily while still providing concrete benefits,
  3. Effectiveness Measures –Understanding when a larger change is justified based on business benefit

8.4 Communication Skills

8.4.1 Oral Communications

  1. Purpose – effectively express ideas in ways that are appropriate to the target audience
  2. Definition – used to verbally express ideas, information, or other matters, rich channel that allows for the efficient transfer of information, including emotional and other non-verbal cues
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Effectively paraphrasing statements to ensure understanding, Can communicate the criticality or urgency of a situation in a calm, rational manner with proposed solutions.

8.4.2 Teaching

  1. Purpose – effectively communicate issues and requirements and to ensure that the information communicated is understood and retained
  2. Definition – understanding of how people learn and the ability to use this understanding to effectively facilitate the learning experience
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Ability of learners to use new skills or demonstrate new knowledge

8.4.3 Written Communications

  1. Purpose – document elicitation results, requirements, and other information
  2. Definition – use of symbols to communicate information, write effectively for various contexts and audiences
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Proper use of grammar and style, Appropriate choice of words

8.5 Interaction Skills

8.5.1 Facilitation and Negotiation

  1. Purpose – facilitate interactions between stakeholders in order to help them resolve disagreements regarding the priority and nature of requirements
  2. Definition – moderating discussions among a group to enable all participants to effectively articulate their views on a topic under discussion
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Encouraging stakeholders to reach win/win outcomes on a regular basis, Effective use of different negotiation styles

8.5.2 Leadership and Influencing

  1. Purpose – effective in formal and informal leadership roles
  2. Definition – key leadership role in any group or project team, motivating people to act in ways that enable them to work together to achieve shared goals and objectives
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Reduced resistance to necessary changes, Team members and stakeholders demonstrating a willingness to set aside personal objectives when necessary

8.5.3 Teamwork

  1. Purpose – work closely with other team members to effectively support their work so that solutions can be effectively implemented
  2. Definition – Relationships within the team are an important part of the success of any project or organization, conflict is quite common. the basic types of conflict are emotional and cognitive,
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Effective resolution of conflict, Developing trust among team members

8.6 Software Applications

8.6.1 General-Purpose Applications

  1. Purpose – office productivity applications to document and track requirements
  2. Definition – word processing, spreadsheets, and presentation software
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Understands and is able to use most of the major features of the tool, Able to track changes to the requirements made through the tools

8.6.2 Specialized Applications

  1. Purpose – modeling tools to support the development of formal models, and in some cases, their validation and implementation as well
  2. Definition – Diagramming tools are designed to support the rapid drawing and documentation of a model, Modeling tools facilitate the conversion of the model into an executable form, Requirements management tools are used to support change control
  3. Effectiveness Measures – Understands and is able to use most of the major features of the tool, Able to track changes to the requirements made through the tools

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