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101 Techniques a business analyst must master

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Business Analyst is like a two-sided coin, on one side he possesses the Business Analysis skill set composed of tasks and techniques and on the other side he possesses certain underlying competencies to succeed in his profession. Both are very vital to make a complete business analyst. In this post, I would like to put in perspective why do a BA needs techniques and how many of them should a BA know to perform above optimal.

Technique is a method to collect, understand, analyze and present information and data in a useful form in business analysis activities. For any given activity, a Business Analyst may have several techniques at hand, but experience helps in determining which has to be deployed. Techniques are helping business analysts to perform a business analysis task in a more effective way.

From my experience as a practitioner and faculty of Business Analysis over 20+ years, I have shortlisted the following 101 techniques as the minimum techniques a business analyst should know to succeed in BA profession.

    1. Acceptance and Evaluation Criteria Definition
    2. Activity Sampling
    3. Ansoff’ Box/Matrix
    4. ARCI Charts
    5. Background Reading/Research
    6. Balanced Scorecard
    7. Benefit – Cost Analysis
    8. Benefits Management
    9. Benefits Realization
    10. Benchmarking
    11. Brainstorming
    12. Boston Box
    13. BCG Matrix
    14. Business Process Modeling Notation 2.0
    15. Business Rules Analysis
    16. Business Activity Model
    17. Business Case
    18. Business Event Analysis
    19. Business Process Triggers
    20. CATWOE
    21. Class Modeling
    22. Concept Maps
    23. Conceptual Model
    24. Conscious Competence Model
    25. Constraints Analysis
    26. Context Diagram
    27. Critical Success Factors
    28. CRUD Matrix
    29. Cultural Analysis
    30. Data Dictionary and Glossary
    31. Data Flow Diagrams
    32. Data Modeling
    33. Decision Analysis
    34. DMAIC
    35. Document Analysis
    36. Estimation
    37. Entity-Relationship Diagrams
    38. Entity-Relationship Modeling
    39. Ethnographic Study
    40. Facilitated Workshops
    41. Feasibility Analysis
    42. Force-Field Analysis
    43. Four-View Model
    44. FMEA
    45. Focus Groups
    46. Functional Decomposition
    47. Gap Analysis
    48. Hothousing
    49. House of Quality
    50. Interface Analysis
    51. Interviews
    52. Impact Analysis
    53. Influence / Interest Grid
    54. Investment Appraisal
    55. Joint Application Development Workshops
    56. Joint Requirements Planning Workshops
    57. Kolb Cycle
    58. Kurt Lewin’s Model of Organizational Change
    59. Learning Cycle
    60. span sLearning Styles
    61. Logical Activity Model
    62. Logical Data Modeling
    63. McKinsey’s 7-S
    64. Mind Maps
    65. MOST Analysis
    66. Lessons Learned Process
    67. Metrics and Key Performance Indicators
    68. MoSCoW Analysis
    69. Non-functional Requirements Analysis
    70. Observation
    71. Organization Modeling
    72. Object Class Modeling
    73. Options Identification
    74. Organization Diagram
    75. PARADE
    76. PDCA
    77. PEST Analysis
    78. PESTEL Analysis
    79. PESTLE Analysis
    80. PESTLIED Analysis
    81. Porter’s Five Forces Framework
    82. Power / Impact Grid
    83. Power / Interest Grid
    84. Problem Tracking
    85. Process Modeling
    86. Prototyping
    87. Requirements Workshops
    88. Risk Analysis
    89. Root Cause Analysis
    90. 5-Whys
    91. Scenarios and Use Cases
    92. Scope Modeling
    93. Sequence Diagrams
    94. State Diagrams
    95. Structured Walkthrough
    96. Survey/Questionnaire
    97. SWOT Analysis
    98. Time Boxing
    99. User Stories
    100. Vendor Assessment
    101. Voting

Though there are much more techniques available, mastering these 101 techniques will give a solid foundation to business analysts where these techniques are more than sufficient most of the times

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