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Business Analysts are especially important for identifying problems and issues with a business model. Business Analyists are also crucial for identifying the key business need that would warrant the need for a project. In contrast, Project Managers tend to provide the solution to this identified business need through a smoothly executed project plan.
In my personal experience as a PM, my project focused mainly on expanding the marketing outreach for a consulting firm. Before the project charter was initiated for this project, there was a business analyst in place who gave great information on how the firm failed to meet it’s marketing metrics. They also provided data showed that the firm was underperforming in certain areas. This same business analyst was helpful to consult with throughout the entirety of the project because I could double check to see if my project plan solved a lot of the firm’s marketing problems.
In the best scenarios, the PM and BA have a symbiotic, trust & respect-based relationship.
The BA will act as the voice of truth from a needs & wants perspective and will help to ensure the right product gets built and that changes which are beneficial to the outcomes are considered. The PM will support the BA from an escalation and funding perspective to ensure they can do the best job possible.
I would say that the BA is the PM's right-hand person, but many BAs I know would say I've got it reversed :-)
To put it inside PMI context my recommendation is go to Business Analysis Practirioners Guide where you can find the dynamic mainly if you read "collaboration" topics. Beyond that, from need a solution is defined. Business analyst is accountable for that. Whan solution is defined then a project is started just in case business case is approved (business analyst is accountable for business case creation). When project is started all related to project is defined from solution mainly from the product/service/result to be created. During project execution all related to product/service/result still remains on business analyst shoulders. When project ends, business analyst continue working on monitoring if the solution is achieving the expected and stated (inside the business case) results. So, is not about business analyst is critical to project success. Is about no project exists without business analyst work.
In my view the Business Analyst is the voice of the customer and represents the customer within the project team, ensuring the requirements and product/solution is fit for purpose and solves the business problem the project set out to achieve.
The Project Manager and Business Analyst work hand in hand to ensure the "what and the how" fit within the project internal and external constrains. The areas of responsibility may be interchangeable depending on the project need, scope and industry. However as a general rule the BA would manage the Product from a definition, suitability and completeness perspective, and the PM would govern the overall management to deliver the project intended to deliver the product the BA owns.
Projects do not require only Business Analyst to be successful but the Project Manager must always act as an entrepreneur. BAs and project organizations see every project as a solution or an investment that need to deliver very good returns. As a result of that, the PM needs to collaborate with the BA to align the project objectives to the corporate mission and strategic goals. This is because projects are strategic business solutions that need to be implemented to realize strategic goals and for profit maximization. Also, this collaboration will help the PM to understand how the parent organization creates value for its stakeholders, and take responsibility and manage the project in a manner that will yield the required returns on the investment made in the project. Another simple reason why projects require Business Analyst and PMs have to be a business-minded manager are that projects live on investment. No investment no project.
In most delivery organizations, the BA works as a representative of the customer. They need to work as a bridge between the customer and the project team to succeed
Necessary to have a connection to the business and to the business needs. They act as the source of truth and voice of the business in support of the product. The project manager acts in support of the project working in conjunction and partnership with the BA
Good question!!! very benefit!!!
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