Business analysis, as I’ve mentioned before in previous blogs, is an incredibly crucial element to any business. Analysts can assist in recognising problems, both large and small, and provide insightful solutions for the betterment of the company. Business analysts are a major force for any company. And much like a construction worker needs a screwdriver and a teacher needs a textbook, business analysts need tools in order to complete their objectives. Here are some of the most popular tools that business analysts use.
Microsoft has permanently cemented themselves as a must-use software company for any and all business uses. We are all familiar with the Microsoft Office suite of programmes, like Word, Powerpoint and Excel; but there are many people unaware of the various other Microsoft programmes available to the business world. One such programme is called Microsoft Visio. In essence, the Visio is used as a diagramming and flowchart creation tool. This is a major part of business analysis, as effective communication is key. What better way to communicate than visual diagrams? Microsoft Visio allows business analysts to create data models, process flow charts and even architecture diagrams. It offers a bevvy of templates and is incredibly intuitive so that any business analyst, regardless of experience, can excel.
Another important aspect of business analysis is wireframing. In short, wireframing is creating the base frame of what a proposed system, software or user interface will look like. It is typically associated with the visual aspect of an application. However, business analysts must also wireframe, but in a slightly different method. For business analysts, wireframing focuses on data points, rather than the actual visual component of something. Wireframes demonstrate the scale and size of a project and allow project stakeholders to get an idea of all of the components and requirements of the project. Balsamiq offers a quick and easy way to create said wireframes.
This may seem painfully obvious, but, as mentioned before, business analysts rely heavily on communication. In today’s age, communication is easier than ever before. Google Docs is a big reason why. Google Docs allows for the creation of documents, but more importantly, it allows for instantaneous sharing of those documents to virtually anyone with an Internet connexion. You can also include others on documents and collaborate and add or remove text and comments in real time. It’s an amazing programme that should be utilised by business analysts, as well as anyone else.
Another major focus for business analysts is data crunching. We handle so much data on a daily basis that we need a programme to sort it all out and make sense of it all. With Excel, we can examine data trends, create charts or graphs and much more. It’s a tool that no business analyst should be without.
Alastair Majury is a highly experienced 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 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.