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Ask Joy

How to Improve Your Curiosity as a Business Analyst

  “Curiosity is different from intelligence or creativity or even from leadership. Not everyone has those qualities, but everyone can be as curious as they want to be, and it doesn’t matter when you start. Furthermore, your curiosity can help you be smarter and more creative, it can help you …

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How To Redesign an Organization Without Freaking People Out

Last month I was honored to speak at BBC in San Antonio. My talk was entitled “How to Redesign an Organization, Processes, and Technology all at Once Without Freaking People Out!” The biggest challenges in these major changes are the people and dependencies between the people, their processes, and the technology …

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Tracking Project Status with Requirements

“How are you coming on implementing that subsystem, Yvette?” asked the project manager, Dave. “Pretty good, Dave. I’m about 90 percent done.” Dave was puzzled. “Didn’t you say you were 90 percent done a couple of weeks ago?” he asked. Yvette replied, “Yes, I thought I was, but now I’m …

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Ask Joy: What if I don’t have a requirements management tool?

Angela asks “For a company without a requirements management tool, can you suggest methods or models for tracking requirements relationships across different workstreams (aka silos)?” Obviously using a tool is best, but unfortunately many companies don’t budget to allow using a tool. Over time, hopefully we can help them see …

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Requirement Models for System Replacement Projects

We recently received an “Ask Joy” question around what models can be helpful for a system replacement project. Below is our answer, slightly modified to give proper context for all. System replacement projects can be a challenge, since many times the systems being replaced are old and obsolete from a …

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Answers from Joy: When and why do BAs use BPMN?

I recently got a question from Zbigniew of http://bpmtips.com/ to address: “Why, when and how should business analysts use BPMN?” So I love the question about when BAs should use BPMN and I’d add to your question of “when” by also asking “if” they should at all. BPMN is a …

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Specifying Quality Requirements With Planguage

How often has a customer asked you to write software that is user-friendly, robust, fast, or secure? No one will argue that those are worthy goals that everyone wants in their software products. However, they are terrible requirements. They give you no idea of just what “user-friendly” means, or how …

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day – Green Requirements!

Since I’m on a roll with my 2015 holiday posts – in honor of St. Patrick’s Day, let’s talk about making our requirements green. Ok not literally green in color, but the paper-free version “green”. I’m still constantly surprised how many companies are not using requirements management tools. Many business …

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