Business Analysis Techniques
Today’s world is data-driven. World has seen a huge revolution in data and business analysis. Now-a-days digitalized world is offering a huge number of options, solutions and resources to businesses as well as to consumers. Before moving to business analysis techniques;
What is Business Analysis?
Business analysis is a practice of recognizing business needs and finding out solutions of business problems. Business analysis defines the needs of business and recommends the solutions that will deliver superior value to customer and stakeholders.
It consists of skills, knowledge, ideas, and information that provide solution to businesses. These solutions are in direct relationship with business requirements. For every business problem there are different business analysis techniques.
Business Analysis Techniques
Here is the list of top 10 business analysis techniques;
1. SWOT Analysis
SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats). It is one of the most important business analysis technique. SWOT analysis is conducted while considering the following two factors;
- internal factors that are strengths and weaknesses
- external factors that are opportunities and threats
SWOT analysis is conducted to assess the dynamics of the external factors that can affect the company and internal factors that can deal with them. It helps in decision making about resources and overall organizational improvements.
SWOT analysis helps the business in using the gathered information in business planning, decision-making, developing and achieving goals. This technique more commonly used at organizational level. It is a grid like matrix, four distinct quadrants.
The four elements of SWOT analysis are;
Read more: How To Do A SWOT Analysis
2. MOST Analysis
MOST analysis stands for mission, objective, strategy and tactics. This analysis is also one of the most important business analysis technique. In this analysis, business analysts assess that what the company is planning and doing to achieve their goals and objectives.
MOST analysis gives a proper view and understanding of organizational capabilities and purpose. It is an internal analysis of organizational goals and objectives and how to achieve them.
MOST analysis shows us that;
- Mission – The organizational purpose
- Objective – key milestones that will help organization in achieving their mission
- Strategy – available options to achieve those objectives
- Tactics – available methods to execute strategies
3. PESTLE Analysis
There are always some external factors that affect business in strategic planning. These factor influences organizations in making business decisions and its performance. They can create opportunities or threats for any organization at any time.
It is best for an organization to address them while making final business decision. Business analysts explore the business external environment, its affect on organization and how they will affect organization’s overall performance.
PESTLE stands for;
Brainstorming is a group activity to generate variety of diversified ideas. It is helpful technique in finding out a root cause and solving complex business problems. Each idea of each individual is valued in this process based on their diversity of knowledge.
Brainstorming encourages creative ideas, options and approaches in solving a business problem. Brainstorming is also used in other business analysis techniques like SWOT analysis, PESTLE analysis and others.
5. Six Thinking Hats
This technique helps you in considering different perspectives and ideas. This technique encourages groups to consider different perspectives and ideas. Six thinking Hats technique is used in association with brainstorming, encouraging teams to consider diversity of thinking.
The six thinking hats are;
- White – Focuses on logical and data driven thinking
- Red -Focuses on emotions based thinking
- Black – Focuses on negative or opposite thinking
- Yellow – Focuses on positive and optimistic thinking
- Green – Focuses on creative thinking
- Blue – Focuses on bigger picture
CATWOE is a business analysis technique, which identifies problematic areas in the business and the impact of solutions on stakeholders. It is used to identify and collect the perceptions of key stakeholders.
CATWOE analysis brings forward the perspective of different stakeholders. CATWOE helps business analysts in prioritizing different opinions and perspectives according to their merits. Business analysts search for cause and effect on different stakeholders.
Its acronym stands for;
- World view
- Environmental Constraints
7. Business Process Modeling (BPM)
Business process modeling is about overall improvement in organization’s processes. It is a business analysis technique that is used during project analysis stage. BPM is considered as one of the best business analysis technique in the industry.
It is used to understand and analyze gaps between the current processes of the organization and any future process that organization is going for.
Business process modeling is represented in the following form of diagram. Within which business processes, business decisions and information are shown in a series workflow.
Business analysts can easily envision the series of steps in implementation process, which help in making complex business decisions. Business analysts perform following task during business process modeling;
- Strategic planning
- Business model analysis
- Define and design the process
- Technical analysis for complex business solutions
8. Non-functional Requirement Analysis
This technique is applied where technology solution is being replaced, or newly built. For example, taking innovative steps and moving from one technology to another which is required to be built from scratch.
This analysis illustrates the features that are needed for new or modified system. Business analysts’ primary focus is on overall system performance and check for data storage. It is implemented during analysis stage and used during designing stage.
This analysis covers;
9. The 5 Whys
This technique is considered as a core of business analysis and six sigma. In business analysis technique, the 5 whys are used as a series of questions that lead to other questions as well.
This technique helps business analysts to identify the origin of the problem. Through asking why problem exists, followed by other whys related to first answer. By series of questions, business analysts reach to root cause of an issue.
This technique helps you in setting priorities of requirements in the form of a framework, comparing each requirement against the other. It helps you in giving answers about actual requirements and necessities.
- Are the products a must have or should have?
- Is there a demand of something that could make product better? or
- Is it something to wait and it would be great idea later on in future?
The Bottom Line
There are various business analysis techniques available. Business analysts can use the data to take business to the next level. The important thing here is to choose the right technique depending on the business, its problems and necessary actions requirement.
The mentioned business analysis techniques are very helpful for business analysts. Business analysis can make you understand the business, its overall performance, and the future of the business.
Business Analysis Techniques FAQ
1. What are the business analysis techniques?
There are 10 different techniques of business analysis;
- SWOT Analysis
- MOST Analysis
- PESTLE Analysis
- Six Thinking Hats
- Business Process Modeling (BPM)
- Non-functional Requirement Analysis
- The 5 Whys