5 quick tips for successful Agile outcomes

Agile-friendly Business Analysis

This post is from the International Institute of Business Analysis, an Agile2022 Sponsor.

Successful product owners need business analysis skills. Why? Often when implementing Agile initiatives, teams fail to leverage business analysis practices, processes, tools, and techniques. Keeping an open mind about the value business analysis professionals bring to your work will help you improve your workflow.

The 15th State of Agile Report states, “In response to the pandemic, organizations are accelerating the adoption of new processes, practices, and technologies to support changes to product and service delivery.” As organizations transition into a post-pandemic era, the use of business analysis professionals with an Agile mindset is proving to be very beneficial. In fact, 76% of business analysis professionals practice Agile approaches and 35% of business analysts working in Agile environments are doing product ownership work.

Product Ownership Analysis or POA is a researched and studied discipline with a set of practices, processes, and procedures to create successful outcomes. Here are five quick tips to add to your toolkit.

Tip 1: Onboard business analysis professionals who are skilled in Agile and POA.

The application of the business analysis mindset and skills such as process development, analysis, and testing support product ownership work in Agile environments. Business analysis practices integrate with the Product Ownership Analysis discipline and help teams create and deliver exceptional products and services for their customers and stakeholders.

Tip 2: Continuously refine the backlog.

Product owners with business analysis experience can extend beyond the traditional activities involved in product ownership. They utilize business analysis skills like eliciting stakeholder requirements to create a prioritized list of backlog items that helps their team deliver high-value, high-quality solutions in each iteration.

Tip 3:  Prioritize. Prioritize. Prioritize.

Prioritize what’s important. Business analysts have a solid understanding of backlog management, the terminology, the process, and the planning. Proper management can help professionals better visualize and maintain a lean backlog.

Tip 4: Leverage business analysis practices, processes, techniques, and tools that support Agile.

Business analysis professionals leverage common and successful methods to help manage the workflow. Use their expertise! For example, by leveraging the proven POA framework, professionals can deliver successful products quicker and more often.

Tip 5: Follow POA key concepts, principles, and practices to drive the delivery of successful products.

Product owners help the team deliver the product in small, high-value increments and generate much-needed customer feedback by adopting a customer-centric, Agile mindset. Interested in the key concepts? Here’s an overview of the seven POA domains that guide teams in maximizing the value delivered.

  • Apply foundational concepts
    Establish best practices at an organizational level to create a supportive environment for successful product delivery.
  • Cultivate customer intimacy
    Develop a deep understanding of customers and apply what is learned to help build a stronger product.
  • Engage the whole team
    Using a “whole team” approach supports communication and collaboration, which leads to a higher quality product.
  • Make an impact
    Get customers’ attention in a noisy, competitive world.
  • Deliver often
    Deliver the product in small, high-value increments, and generate valuable customer feedback.
  • Learn fast
    Deliver a product that meets customer needs and adapt the product build activities as the context changes.
  • Obsess about value
    Maximize the value being created by the team.

product ownership analysisFIGURE 1: International Institute of Business Analysis™ Product Ownership Analysis framework focuses on 7 domains that guide teams in maximizing value delivered.

Uncover the proven skills and competencies that can give you the advantage

Providing training, proper coaching and professional certification will ensure Agile team members and product owners are armed with the skills they need to succeed. Choose from IIBA’s competency-based Agile Analysis Certification, which supports collaboration and transforms project delivery, or the Certificate in Product Ownership Analysis, which provides an opportunity to acquire essential concepts needed to create successful products with an Agile mindset.

Discover Resources for Agile Professionals

Developed in collaboration with Agile Alliance, the Agile Extension to the BABOK® Guide shares approaches for effective Agile business analysis to help you create better business outcomes that add real business and customer value to your organization.

IIBA’s Guide to Product Ownership Analysis discusses each of the seven domains in detail and covers the integration of Product Ownership and Business Analysis. Developed with Product Owners and Agile team members in mind, the guide explores roles and responsibilities in product management, how to apply Agile and Product Ownership Analysis, plus, it includes more than 50 case studies and 25 techniques for applying POA to help you maximize product value and create better business outcomes.

Uncover the framework, context, techniques, and competencies that can give you an advantage with a FREE copy of the Introduction to Product Ownership Analysis. Download the Introduction to Product Ownership Analysis today and gain access to the information you need to be successful.

Learn more at iiba.org/CPOA

This is an Agile Alliance community blog post. Opinions represented are personal and belong solely to the author. They may not represent the opinion or policy of Agile Alliance.

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International Institute of Business Analysis

International Institute of Business Analysis

The International Institute of Business Analysis™ (IIBA®) is a non-profit professional association serving the growing field of business analysis. As the global thought leader and voice of the business analysis community, IIBA actively supports the recognition of the profession, and works to maintain global standards for the ongoing development of the practice and certifications.

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