SIGIA-L Mail Archives: RE: [Sigia-l] Disciplines and roles that
RE: [Sigia-l] Disciplines and roles that work with IAs
From: Katherine Marshak (katherine.marshak_at_iconmedialab.com)
Date: Thu Sep 26 2002 - 19:21:04 EDT
I often play the role of a business analyst and frequently teach people
how to be analysts. (In fact, I taught some business analysts at your
company last month. If you want details, I'll give them to you
Business analysts come in many flavors: some focus on business process
modeling & organizational design (AKA business process analysts and
business designers), some focus on business strategy, some focus mostly
on software that supports the business (AKA business analysts or
requirements analysts). ("Software" means website or any other type of
Most business analysts strive to define business processes (sometimes
they use the term "workflow") and software requirements to support,
enable, or transform those business processes.
What do they produce? Business process models and at least an initial
statement of software requirements. Business process models may be "as
is" or "to be" versions of the business process. Requirements may be
many different forms, but increasingly companies are adopting use cases
as a requirements technique.
How does this relate to what an IA does? Both IAs & analysts conduct
some amount of user research. Both want to understand user goals.
Analysts focus more on the functionality to be provided by the software
-- not on how the functionality is presented to a user. Many business
analysts are not skilled in HCI, IA, or other disciplines that are
needed to produce efficient, usable, and engaging user experiences.
There should be a close, symbiotic relationship between IAs & analysts.
Each role looks at user needs from a slightly different but
complementary perspective. Some people who fill IA roles may also be
playing the role of business analysts (fully or partially) without
Having both roles on a project increases the need to clarify what type
of process will be used, which roles are responsible for which
I hope this helps. You can visit www.iconprocess.com for more info on
roles, activities & artifacts.
Kathy Marshak, Senior Consultant & Director of Process Development
IconMedialab | www.iconmedialab.com
IconProcess | www.iconprocess.com
voice: + 1 636 530 7776
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