Enterprise Analysis

5.0 Overview

  • Identify a business need, problem, or opportunity
  • Define the nature of a solution that meets that need
  • Justify the investment necessary to deliver that solution
  • Provide context to requirements analysis
  • Starting point for initiating a new project
  • Business requirements are identified and documented
  • Analyze the business situation
  • Determine the most feasible business solution approach
  • Define the solution scope and develop the business case
  • Define and document business requirements

5.1 Define Business Need

  • Purpose
    • Identify and define why a change to organizational systems or capabilities is required
  • Description
    • The definition of the business need is frequently the most critical step in any business analysis effort
      • From the top down – achieve a strategic goal
      • From the bottom up – problem with process, function
      • From middle management – manager needs
      • From external drivers – customer demand
  • Inputs
    • Business Goals and Objectives – refined to define business need
    • Requirements [Stated] – assist stakeholders in defining their perceived needs
  • Elements
    1. Business Goals and Objectives
      • The ends that the organization is seeking to achieve
      • Test for assessing objectives:
        • SMART – Specific / Measurable / Achievable / Relevant / Time-bounded
    2. Business Problem or Opportunity
      • Issue must be investigated to ensure that there is in fact an opportunity for improvement , considering:
        • Adverse impacts the problem is causing
        • Quantify those impacts
        • Expected benefits from any potential solution
        • Cost of doing nothing
        • Underlying source of the problem
    3. Desired Outcome
      • It is not a solution, it describes the business benefits and the end state desired by stakeholders, like:
        • Improve revenue / Improve safety
        • Increase customer and/or employee satisfaction
        • Comply with new regulations
  • Techniques
  • Stakeholders
    • Customer or Supplier – actions taken by then
    • Domain SME and End User – direct awareness of problems
    • Implementation SME – aware of capabilities
    • Regulator – impose new regulatory
    • Sponsor – must be identified
  • Outputs
    • Business Need – describes a problem or an opportunity that it has not taken, and the desired outcome, will guide the identification and definition of possible solutions

5.2 Assess Capability Gaps

  • Purpose
    • To identify new capabilities required by the enterprise to meet the business need
  • Description
    • Determine if it is possible for the organization to meet the business need using its existing structure
    • If existing capabilities are inadequate, it will probably be necessary to launch a project to create that capability
    • Change may be needed to any component of the enterprise
  • Input
    • Business Need – to identify gaps
    • Enterprise Architecture – defines the current capabilities
    • Solution Performance Assessment – Identifies shortcomings, problems or limitations
  • Elements
    1. Current Capability Analysis
      • How the business and technology architecture are supporting that business
      • Current capabilities must be assessed against the desired objectives to determine whether the organization currently has the capability to meet the business need
    2. Assessment of New Capability Requirements
      • A comparison of the current and desired future states will identify gaps in organizational capabilities that need to be filled to support the business vision, strategy, goals and objectives
    3. Assumptions
      • It will often be difficult or impossible to prove that the delivery of a new capability will meet a business need
      • Assumptions must be identified and clearly understood
      • Appropriate decisions can be made if the assumption later proves invalid
  • Techniques
    • Document Analysis – understand current state of the enterprise
    • SWOT Analysis – how current capabilities and limitations (Strengths and Weaknesses) match up against the influencing factors (Opportunities and Threats)
  • Stakeholders
    • Customer and Supplier – Position to provide or support new capabilities themselves
    • Domain SME, End User, Implementation SME, and Sponsor – provide information on the strengths and weaknesses
  • Output
    • Required Capabilities – to meet the business need

5.3 Determine Solution Approach

  • Purpose
    • To determine the most viable solution approach to meet the business need in enough detail to allow for definition of solution scope and prepare the business case
  • Description
    • General approach to create or acquire the new capabilities required
    • Identify possible approaches
    • Some possible approaches:
      • Purchase or lease software
      • Design and develop custom software
      • Change the business procedures
      • Partner with other organizations
  • Input
    • Business Need – ensure that it can be met by the approach
    • Organizational Process Assets – specific methodologies
    • Required Capabilities – solution must support then
  • Elements
    1. Alternative Generation
      • Identify as many potential options as possible
      • Fill identified gaps in capabilities
      • Should include the option of doing nothing
      • Determine when enough alternatives have been investigated:
        • At least one is acceptable to key stakeholders
        • At least some are distinctly different from one another
        • The effort is producing diminishing returns
    2. Assumptions and Constraints
      • May affect the chosen solution should be identified
      • Should be questioned to ensure that they are valid
    3. Ranking and Selection of Approaches
      • Record available information and analyze the operational, economic, technical, schedule-based, organizational, cultural, legal and marketing feasibility
      • Solution approaches must be assessed and ranked
      • A scoring system must be used
      • Each solution is scored and the top-rated solution or solutions are then investigated in greater detail
  • Techniques
    1. General
    2. Feasibility Analysis
      • Preliminary analysis of solution alternatives
      • Use reliable data and apply statistics and market research
      • Integral part of formulating a major business transformation project
  • Stakeholders
    • Customer, Domain SME, End User and Supplier – provide suggested approaches and identify assumptions and constraints
    • Implementation SME – assess the feasibility
    • Sponsor – source of constraints and required in approving
  • Outputs
    • Solution Approach – Describe the types of solution components that will be delivered and the methodology that will be used to deliver those components

5.4 Define Solution Scope

  • Purpose
    • To define which new capabilities a project or iteration will deliver
  • Description
    • Conceptualize the recommended solution in enough detail
    • Enable stakeholders to understand which new business capabilities an initiative will deliver
    • The solution scope includes:
      • Scope of analysis which provides the context in which the solution is implemented
      • Capabilities supported by solution components
      • Capabilities to be supported by individual releases
  • Input
    • Assumptions and Constraints – how stakeholders will respond to a new product or service or about the availability of technology
    • Business Need – goals, objectives, and desired outcomes
    • Required Capabilities – basis for the solution scope
    • Solution Approach – used when assessing options for the implementation of solution components
  • Elements
    1. Solution Scope Definition
      • Described in terms of the major features and functions
      • Interactions that the solution will have with people and systems
      • State in-scope and out-of-scope components
      • Business units, business processes, process owners, and IT systems that will likely be affected
    2. Implementation Approach
      • How the chosen solution approach will deliver the solution scope
      • Functionality in each release and the timeframe
      • Define which processes are candidates for outsourcing
      • Break delivery down into specific releases
      • Provide a roadmap/timeframe a capability can be expected
    3. Dependencies
      • Will impose constraints to the effort to deploy the solution
  • Techniques
    1. General
    2. Problem or Vision Statement
      • States the business need, identifies key stakeholders, and briefly describes the positive impact that meeting the business need will have on those stakeholders
  • Stakeholders
    • Domain SME – identifying the affected organizational units, scope of possible solutions, determining the relative priorities
    • Implementation SME – allocation of capabilities to solution components, determining the time and effort required
    • Project Manager – input into the Project Charter
    • Sponsor – setting priorities and approving the solution scope
  • Output
    • Solution Scope – Defines what must be delivered in order to meet the business need, and the effect of the proposed change initiative on the business and technology operations and infrastructure.

5.5 Define Business Case

  • Purpose
    • To determine if an organization can justify the investment required to deliver a proposed solution
  • Description
    • Describes the justification for the project in terms of the value
    • May also include qualitative and quantitative benefits
    • May present expected cash flow consequences
    • Provides a framework to demonstrate how the initiative is expected to achieve business objectives
    • Lists the constraints associated with the proposed project
  • Input
    • Assumptions and Constraints – revenue generated
    • Business Need – value that a solution will deliver
    • Solution Scope – capabilities that will be implemented
    • Stakeholder Concerns – risks or issues that must be accounted for
  • Elements
    1. Benefits
      • Should be quantified
      • Non-financial nature benefits are also important, assessed qualitatively
    2. Costs
      • Estimate the total net cost of the solution
      • Capital expenditures for the new investment
      • Costs of developing and implementing the change
      • Opportunity costs of not investing in other options
    3. Risk Assessment
      • Determine if the proposed initiative carries more risk than the organization is willing to bear
      • Focuses mainly on solution feasibility risks
      • Consider technical, financial, business change and organizational risks
    4. Results Measurement
      • How those costs and benefits will be assessed and evaluated
  • Techniques
  • Stakeholders
    • Sponsor – Approves the business case and authorizes funding
    • Domain SME – estimating business benefits
    • Implementation SME – estimating cost projections
    • Project Manager – developing time and cost estimates
  • Output
    • Business Case – Presents the information necessary to support a go/no go decision to invest and move forward with a proposed project
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