BCS Professional Certificate in Agile Business Analysis

BCS Professional Certificate in Agile Business Analysis

Audience

Anyone wishing to understand the Agile approach from a business perspective. This includes business architects, business analysts, project managers and business managers.

Prerequisites

There are no prerequisites for this course. However, delegates should understand the following techniques: CATWOE, Business Activity Model and Use Case Diagrams prior to attending the course or sitting the examination.

Duration

3 days. Lecture-based with discussions and practical work based on a realistic case study.

Course Objectives

This course has been independently developed but follows the BCS Business Analysis Practice syllabus. Course fees do not include the BCS examination. The certificate assesses competence with regard to the philosophy, methods, principles and techniques of the Agile approach and its relevance to business analysis.

At the end of the course, delegates will be able to:

  • Describe the philosophy underpinning Agile approaches
  • State the core Agile values in the agile manifesto
  • Interpret the key Agile principles
  • The application of agile in the wider business context
  • Describe a range of Agile methods (process, roles, principles)
  • State the role of the BA in an agile team
  • Evaluate the applicability of an agile method for a given situation (scaled methods vs product development methods)
  • Analyse the stakeholders in Agile projects
  • Discuss the 8 wastes of Lean
  • Discuss the FMM
  • Illustrate the use of Agile analysis, modelling and documentation techniques
  • Analyse business goals and their decomposition
  • Identify and document user roles
  • Illustrate the application of the user story technique
  • Explain the role and management of the solution backlog
  • Explain techniques used to plan and manage an iteration

Course Content

Agile Philosophy
The rationale for adopting an Agile approach:
• Definition of Agile
• 3 pillars of Agile
The Agile manifesto
The three overarching aspects of Agile:
• Principles
• Methods
• Techniques
Business Analysis thinking and how it is relevant in Agile business:
• Systems thinking
• Service thinking
• Lean business analysis - Lean thinking, 8 wastes of Lean, value proposition

Agile Principles
The 12 core principles
Key principle – collaborative working
Key principle – self organising teams:
• Tuckman & Jenson theory of group development
Key principle – continuous improvement:
• Kaizen
• DMAIC (from Lean)
Key principle – iterative development and incremental delivery
Key principle – building in change

Agile Methods
Elements of a method
Defined v empirical methods
Characteristics of Agile methods:
• Product development methods – SCRUM, XP, Lean software
• Scaled methods – DSDM, SAFe
Advantages and Disadvantages of Agile methods

Understanding Stakeholders
Stakeholder groups:
• Business Stakeholders: Project Sponsor; Business Managers; Business Architect
• Project Stakeholders: Project Manager; Programme Manager
• Technical Stakeholders: Technical Architect
• Development Team: Subject Matter Expert; End-users; Business Analyst; Designer; Team Leader; Solution Developer; Solution Tester

Agile Modelling
Rationale and principles for Agile modelling:
• Levels of definition - black box, white box
Hierarchy of models using the Functional Model Map (FMM):
• Organisation ideal view - business activity models, business use cases
• System level view - context diagram, system use cases
• System component view - component designs
MoSCoW prioritisation

Decomposing and Organising Business Goals
Goal decomposition v Functional decomposition
Benefits of a goal decomposition approach as the basis for agile development
Prioritising business goals using the POPIT model
Modular business architecture as a strategic tool to enable business capability reuse

Agile Requirements
Hierarchy of requirements and how this relates to agile projects:
• General
• Technical
• Functional
• Non-functional
User Roles:
• Identifying and documenting users roles
• Personas and extreme characters
User Stories:
• 3 Cs
• INVEST
• Techniques to elicit user stories – interviews, surveys, observation, story-writing workshops
• Defining user stories
• Hierarchy of user stories – themes, epics, user story
• User stories and non-functional requirements

Managing Requirements
The solution backlog
Managing the backlog
Levels of traceability through goals
Estimation techniques:
• Delphi estimating
• Planning poker with story points

Managing the Iteration
Planning the iteration:
• Iteration planning meeting
Calculating and utilising velocity
Techniques to manage the iteration:
• Daily stand-ups
• Agile boards - Kanban
• Burn-down charts – story, effort
• Iteration reviews - Show and Tell, Retrospectives

BA Role in Agile Projects
Agile business analysis:
• The business view
• The system view
• Transition between the views
• Exploring the system view: scenarios; storyboards; wireframes; prototyping
The Generalising Specialist

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