ANALYZING THE ENTERPRISE

Once an organization begins exploring its business requirements, the main starting point entails conducting an enterprise analysis.  Through this process, the scope of the business needs will be pinpointed along with the justification for the potential solution(s).  Business analysts generally follow the BABOK (Business Analysis Body of Knowledge) principles, a guide that provides a framework for describing and analyzing the areas of knowledge as well as the associated activities, tasks, and techniques.  These principles help the enterprise identify and document its business activities.

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BABOK has pinpointed five (5) key steps for effectively achieving the enterprise analysis process:

1) Describe the business need:  The organization must correctly identify the issue that needs to be addressed in order to achieve its present goal.  The business analyst must proceed in evaluating the fundamental causes before being able to properly consider any viable solutions.

2) Evaluate any gaps in organizational capability:  Capability analysis, which describes whether the organization has the capability to meet the established need, is a critical part of the enterprise analysis.  Without the requisite competencies, an organization simply may not be able to its business needs. Therefore, it is necessary for the business analyst to pinpoint the capabilities that must be supplemented.

3) Decide upon the solution:  The analyst can now compile a list of feasible solutions along with the associated assumptions, constraints, or risks.

4) Define the scope of the solution:   This particular phase entails defining which capabilities will be provided by the project as well as the resources that will be needed for implementation.

5)  Outline the business case:  The business case provides the framework for describing how exactly the project will benefit the organization in tangible terms.

A well-executed enterprise analysis therefore provides stakeholders with a comprehensive description of the business need, the proposed solution and its scope, any capability gaps as well as the business case.  Together, these tools will offer stakeholders with the business information required to make the best determination for the enterprise.

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