Before getting started, a business analysis project may feel like a ‘choose your own adventure.’ It might be exhilarating to start a new adventure to help enhance the firm for which you work. But it can also be a little intimidating. A BA project requires numerous considerations and activities. If you’re new to the game, you may be wondering where to begin. You may be asking how to get started, who you should involve and when, and how to generate ‘buy in’ and interest in your project. Here are some methods that can help you start your next BA project on the right foot. Check out our business analyst training courses to learn more about Business Analysis.

1. Find an idea-based opportunity that would benefit the business.

The first step in starting a business analysis study is identifying an idea that would help the company. This concept should be founded on a need or opportunity that can be addressed through a project. By identifying an issue or opportunity, you are saying that your concept will provide some form of value if it is implemented. It might be better earnings, more efficient processes, cost or time savings, improved employee morale, or increased customer happiness – the possibilities and potential value are endless! 


For example, a company may recognize the need to improve customer happiness by improving the quality of its products, services, customer experiences, or other measures.  Alternatively, a corporation may uncover a cost-cutting opportunity by introducing new technology, which opens up new alternatives and considerations for process efficiency. 


2. Develop a well-defined business case. 

You’ve already done a lot of study and work on this project, but keep in mind that it hasn’t really become a project yet. However, by developing a business case, you begin to go beyond the idea stage and into the validation phase. Once an idea has been found, the following stage is to develop a detailed business case. A business case is a thorough document that describes the problem, identifies the solution, and lays out the procedures needed to accomplish the desired result. 


The business case should also provide an estimate of the resources, timetable, and budget needed to complete the project. You don’t need to go into too much information about each stage; keep it generic. You just want to present an estimate of a timeline and how long it will take to get there so that the firm investing in this project knows what to expect. 


For example, a business analyst may develop a business case outlining a strategy to reduce customer complaints (identify the problem) by adopting new software (propose the solution). The business case may predict that the software will make the business 200% more efficient (showcase the value), and that the project will take six months to complete for about $100,000 (including the cost in time and financial expense).

3. Get Approval From an Executive Team or Sponsor

Once the business case is completed, it should be presented to an executive team or sponsor for approval. The executive team or sponsor will assess the business case to ensure that it is in line with the company’s aims and objectives. If the business case is approved, the executive team or sponsor will provide the financing and budget required to launch the project. Typically, this is the VP of the department that will profit the most from the project, although it can also be a conglomerate or a committee comprising several distinct department heads. Regardless of who it is, someone will always support the initiative and approve the funding for it. Once your business case is approved, you have officially started a project!

4. Create a Project Charter

Once the project has been accepted, the final major step in project commencement is to develop a project charter. A project charter is a document that specifies the project’s objectives, identifies important stakeholders, and establishes a project completion strategy. The project charter should include enough information to help newcomers and those being recruited to the project team understand the project’s mission, goals, and expected timeline. A project charter can contain a strategy for implementing a new sales process to reduce customer complaints.

5. Assemble a Project Team

Finally, once the project charter has been written, the project team can be formed and the project launched. The project team should contain people who have the essential skills, experience, and competence to perform the project successfully. It will always depend on the work required, but a team might include a project manager to oversee the project, a software developer to construct or deploy new software, and a customer service representative to provide feedback on the efficiency of the software. 



To learn more about Business Analysis, you can check out our business analysis course online.