Alastair Majury on Common Techniques in Business Analysis

Alastair Majury is a highly experienced Regulatory Business Analyst

Business analysis is a tricky industry. It can get very complicated and convoluted without the proper knowledge and experience; even then, things can quickly get out of hand. Luckily, there are a few standard, set techniques that the industry has developed over time. I figured I could share a few of them with you.

The SWOT Analysis

The first technique I want to highlight is probably the most basic. The SWOT analysis, which stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats, is an incredibly straightforward method. With the SWOT analysis, a business analyst can enter any organization and ascertain the most pivotal information in making decision. Business analysts look at both the internal and external factors that can affect any organization or business and then work from there. The four pillars of the SWOT analysis are rather simple:

  • Strengths — The business analyst observes a company and notes its internal strengths that can benefit the company.
  • Weaknesses — The business analyst observes any internal issues throughout the company that are, or can, hinder success and growth.
  • Opportunities — The business analyst observes any potential opportunities that the company could use to its advantage.
  • Threats — The business analyst observes any potential, external danger that could negatively impact the company.

Again, the method is very simple, but it is one of the most effective in assessing a company’s current standing and identifying opportunities for success.

The PESTLE Analysis

Where the SWOT analysis focuses much more on internal issues surrounding the company, the PESTLE analysis focuses exclusively on a variety of external factors.

  • Political — The business analyst observes what political factors could potentially help or hinder the business.
  • Economic — The business analyst observes the economic landscape and determines how it could affect the company. Is there a recession on the horizon? Is there a boom? Things of that nature.
  • Social — The business analyst closely observes the social atmosphere at the moment and identifies any business potential.
  • Technological — The business analyst observes the technological landscape and assesses any potential threats or benefits. What technology could the company use to its advantage? For example, could a mobile application work and draw in business?
  • Legal — The business analyst observes the legal landscape and determines the best possible methods of moving forward. For example, are there any local laws or regulations that could boost sales or productivity. Or, what laws or regulations are a company breaking, and how can that be stopped.
  • Environmental — The business analyst observes the environment and how that affects business. Many companies today are attempting to go green in an effort to help the environment. A business analyst could very well suggest something like this to a company.

These are only two methods and techniques that the business analysis industry uses for success. There are certainly many others. And there are business analysts that have their own, personal, secret techniques that have proven to be fruitful. Do not be afraid to explore new horizons and methods.

Alastair Majury is a highly experienced and respected Senior Business Analyst / Data Scientist with a proven track record of success planning, developing, implementing and delivering migrations, organisational change, regulatory, legislative, and process improvements, when providing my Senior Business Analyst / Data Scientist services for global financial organisations, covering the Challenger Bank, Retail Banking, Investment Banking, Wealth Management, and Life & Pensions sectors.

Alastair Majury also resides locally in Dunblane, and is an IT Consultant working across the country. Alastair is also a volunteer officer at the local Boys’ Brigade company, a charity which focuses on enriching the lives of children and young people, and building a stronger community.

I am a Chartered Member of CISI, which is the UK’s leading securities and investment professional body. Alastair Majury resides locally in Dunblane.