What do Business Analysts do? What skills and competencies do they require to do their role? This 3-day Foundation level course provides delegates with a 'whistle-stop tour' of the role of the Business Analyst who acts as the link between business needs, users and IT within change initiatives.
This 3-day course is fast-paced and through the use of examples and a simple case study introduces delegates to the contribution that a business analyst makes within a business. We also consider the tools and techniques available to Business Analysts to assist them in their role.
This is an exam-based course, the exam is delivered via remote proctor. The exam is delivered as a closed book multiple-choice examination to obtain the BCS Business Analysis Foundation Certificate. This qualification provides a foundation to the BCS International Diploma in Business Analysis and covers the knowledge-based element of the qualification.
This course is suitable for anyone new to Business Analysis or anyone wishing to understand the role better but may be preferable for those having already completed courses in the Diploma stream and/or have some experience (we also offer a slower-paced 4-day version of the same course which you may be interested in should you prefer a less intense, more thoughtful and more interactive introduction to Business Analysis).
The BCS Foundation Certificate in Business Analysis Syllabus V4.0 is ideal as a final course towards the Diploma but also works well as a standalone course for those who want to gain an understanding of the role of a BA. For the 4-day version of this course please see: www.QA.com/BAFOUND4.
Ability to commit to some homework (reading and revision) per night during the course (approx. 1 hour per evening)
Delegates will be provided with pre-course reading prior to attending the course. If you have not received your pre-reading material within one week of the start of your course, please contact your Account Manager or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are taking the BCS exam you must bring photographic identification with you (passport, driving license or student card), as it is a BCS requirement to produce it for the invigilator prior to the exam. Failure to produce a valid form of photographic identification will result in a candidate not being able to sit the exam. For any questions about what form of identification is acceptable please contact your Account Manager or the QA Examination Administration team on 44 (0)1793 696273.
BCS Reasonable Adjustments policy
BCS allow additional time for candidates who have a disability or whose native language differs to that of the examination paper. Full details are provided in the BCS Reasonable Adjustments Policy which is available to view on the BCS website. If you believe you qualify for this then please notify the Exam Administration team on the details below as early as possible. At least two weeks' notice will be required for processing this request. Delegates failing to advise QA and provide evidence when requested, may not be allowed the additional support offered via the BCS policy. QA Exam Administration can be contacted by email email@example.com or by phone 44(0) 1793 696162.
At the end of this course, learners will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of business analysis concepts, principles, and techniques in the following areas:
- What is business analysis
- The competencies of a business analyst
- The strategic context for business analysis
- The business analysis service framework
- Investigating the business situation
- Analysing and managing stakeholders
- Improving business services and processes
- Defining the solution
- Making the business case
- Establishing the requirements
- Documenting and modelling requirements
- Validating and managing requirements
- Delivering the requirements
- Delivering the business solution
1. What is Business Analysis (5%), Learners will be able to:
1.1 Describe the business change lifecycle
1.2 List the following principles of business analysis
1.2.1 Root causes not symptoms
1.2.2 Business improvement not IT system change
1.2.3 Options not solutions
1.2.4 Feasible, contributing requirements, not meeting all requests
1.2.5 Entire business change lifecycle, not just requirements definition
1.2.6 Negotiation not avoidance
1.3 Describe the variants of the business analyst role
2. The Competencies of a Business Analyst (2.5%), Learners will be able to:
2.1 Explain the concept of the T-shaped Professional
2.2 Identify the three areas of business analysis competency
3.The Strategic Context for Business Analysis (7.5%), Learners will be able to:
3.1 Describe business analysis and the strategic context
3.2 Define the factors assessed using PESTLE to analyse an external environment
3.3 Identify the elements of the VMOST technique used to analyse an internal environment 3.4 Describe the following elements of performance measurement
3.4.1 Critical success factors
3.4.2 Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
3.5 Describe the structure of a SWOT analysis
3.6 Describe the following techniques used in strategy execution
3.6.1 The POPITTM model
3.6.2 The purpose of the business model canvas
4. The Business Analysis Service Framework (2.5%) Learners will be able to:
4.1 Identify the following services in the Business Analysis Service Framework (BASF)
4.1.1 Situation investigation and problem analysis
4.1.2 Feasibility assessment and business case development
4.1.3 Business process improvement 4.1.4 Requirements definition
4.1.5 Business acceptance testing
4.1.6 Business change deployment
4.1.7 Stakeholder engagement
5. Investigating the Business Situation (12.5%) Learners will be able to:
5.1 Define workshops
5.1.1 Advantages and disadvantages of workshops
5.1.2 List techniques used for discovery workshops
5.1.3 List techniques used for visualisation workshops
5.2 Define observation
5.2.1 Advantages and disadvantages of observation
5.2.2 Formal observation
5.3 Define interviews
5.3.1 Advantages and disadvantages of interviewing
5.4 Define scenarios
5.4.1 Advantages and disadvantages of scenarios
5.5 Define prototyping
5.5.1 Advantages and disadvantages of prototyping
5.6 Define user role analysis
5.6.1 Advantages and disadvantages of user role analysis
5.7 Define quantitative approaches
5.7.1 Surveys or questionnaires
5.7.2 Activity sampling
5.7.3 Document analysis
5.8 Describe the following two diagrammatic techniques used to record a business situation
5.8.1 Rich pictures
5.8.2 Mind maps
6. Analysing and Managing Stakeholders (10%) Learners will be able to:
6.1 Identify stakeholder categories using the stakeholder wheel
6.2 Describe the Power/Interest grid technique to analyse stakeholders
6.2.1 Resulting stakeholder management strategies
6.3 Describe stakeholder responsibilities using RACI
7. Improving Business Services and Processes (12.5%) Learners will be able to:
7.1 Explain the business process hierarchy
7.2 List the following techniques used to model the enterprise level processes 7.2.1 SIPOC
7.2.2 Value chain analysis
7.2.3 Value propositions
7.3 Describe the following aspects of the event response level
7.3.1 Business events
7.3.2 Creating business process models
7.3.3 UML activity models
7.4 Describe the following aspect of the actor-task level
7.4.1 Analysis considerations at actor-task level
7.5 Describe analysis of the following aspects of the as-is process model
7.5.1 Identifying problems
7.5.2 Analysing the handoffs
7.5.3 Analysing the tasks and procedures
7.6 Identify generic approaches to improving business processes
7.7 Define the purpose of customer journey maps
8. Defining the solution (7.5%) Learners will be able to:
8.1 Describe the gap analysis process
8.2 Explain the use of POPITTM in gap analysis
8.3 Describe the process for developing options
8.3.1 Types of options
8.4 Describe the purpose of design thinking
8.4.1 Divergent and convergent thinking
9. Making the Business Case (5%) Learners will be able to:
9.1 Describe the lifecycle for a business case in business case development
9.2 Identify the areas of feasibility assessment
9.3 Define the structure and contents of a business case
9.3.1 Categories of costs and benefits
9.3.2 Impact assessment
9.3.3 Risk assessment
9.4 List the key features relevant to the production of a business case within an Agile context
9.5 Identify the elements of a CARDI Log
9.6 Explain the purpose of the following investment appraisal techniques
9.6.2 Discounted cash flow and net present value
9.6.3 Internal rate of return
10. Establishing the Requirements (10%) Learners will be able to:
10.1 Explain the requirements engineering framework
10.2 Identify the following actors in requirements engineering
10.2.1 The business representatives
10.2.2 The project team
10.3 Identify the types of requirements
10.4 Describe the hierarchy of requirements
10.5 Describe requirements elicitation techniques
10.5.1 The term tacit knowledge
10.6 Identify the following elements of requirements analysis
10.6.1 Requirements filters
10.6.3 Prioritising requirements using MoSCoW
10.6.4 Business rules
11. Documenting and Modelling Requirements (10%) Learners will be able to:
11.1 Identify the following documentation styles
11.1.1 Text-based documentation style
11.2 List elements of a requirements catalogue
11.3 Describe the format of user stories
11.4 Describe the elements of the use case diagram used to model functional requirements
11.5 Describe the elements of a class model used to model data
11.6 Describe the product backlog in modelling and documentation in an Agile environment
11.7 Define the structure of the business requirements document
12. Validating and Managing Requirements (5%) Learners will be able to:
12.1 Describe the following types of requirements validation
12.1.1 Formal requirements validation
12.1.2 The activities in the Agile requirements validation process
12.2 Describe the following aspects of requirements management
12.2.2 Change control
13. Delivering the Requirements (5%) Learners will be able to:
13.1 Describe the following types of delivery lifecycle
13.1.1 The waterfall lifecycle
13.1.2 The “V” model
13.1.3 The incremental lifecycle
13.1.4 The stages of the iterative lifecycle (Agile)
13.2 Explain advantages and disadvantages of the lifecycles
14. Delivering the Business Solution (5%) Learners will be able to:
14.1 Explain the role of the business analyst in the business change lifecycle
14.2 Describe the role of the business analyst during the design, development, and test stages
14.3 Describe the following approaches used in the implementation stage
14.3.1 SARAH model
14.3.2 The purpose of the business readiness assessment
14.4 Describe how the benefits plan is used in the realisation stage
• BCS Business Analysis Foundation Exam (One Hour Multiple Choice)
Business Analysis International Diploma pathway
After taking 2 Core, 1 Knowledge-based, and 1 Practitioner course, there is a final exam needed to achieve the certification.
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