A Platform Primer For Business Analysts

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Giovanni Focaraccio lays down a platform primer for business analysts, to incorporate elements of platforms in their engagements and modernise business models.

Giovanni Focaraccio is passionate about analysis and design and regards these skills to be intertwined and broadly applicable to problem solving and innovation regardless of one’s job title or position in the value chain.

With a tendency to ignore traditional interdisciplinary boundaries, Giovanni is a supporter of lifelong learning and enjoys working with T-shaped people across different problem domains. He has special interests in multi-sided platforms, the subject of his MBA research, as well as how skill is transferred, cultivated and exchanged.

Congratulations on your recent talk at the Business Analysis Summit Southern Africa, it was well received by many. For those who weren’t fortunate to attend, could you give us a synopsis of what your presentation was about?

In traditional pipeline business models the organisation has a linear value chain with a tendency of ownership and control over as many value adding activities, as well as the underlying assets required to perform these activities. In contrast, the presentation highlighted

… the rise and importance of platform based business models (such as Uber and Facebook) and a correlated concept of multi-sided markets;

platforms focusing on facilitating and enabling value exchange between parties.

The topic is clearly an area that you are personally passionate about. Why do you feel this subject is relevant and important for the business analysis profession?

The proliferation of enabling technologies in the fields of mobile computing, social media and data analytics has resulted in renewed interest and opportunities for platforms and multi-sided business models both commercially and academically.

Business analysts are well positioned to drive the adoption of platform based business models …

within traditional organisations given their skill sets and knowledge areas.

Having shared your ideas with the business analysis community. What key points would you like people to take-away, reflect and act upon?

Who better than a business analyst to invent and implement the next Uber?

Business analysis summit spoiled in terms of the learning and networking opportunities. What was your greatest personal insight taken from the business analysis conference?

I was going through my journal notes I took away from the 2014 conference versus what I noted in 2016 and there were a fundamental shift in what I personally took away. In 2014 my take-aways were all very hands on and technical in nature while

… the 2016 event offered many networking and personal growth opportunities.

My greatest personal insight (or confirmation) was how well business analysts are positioned to lead in complex environments.

Having been a regular speaker at local business analysis events. What words of encouragement do you have for people who may be considering presenting in future?

I’d like to say to all analysts that you are part of an amazing fraternity.

Know that when you get up there the entire audience is inspired by your courage and they want you to succeed.

It doesn’t matter if you’re shy or introverted, if there is the faintest desire within in you to speak, do it.

Is there anything else you’d like to add?

The role of the business analyst in South Africa will continue to evolve over the next coming years, and

… as more companies adopt agile methodologies, business folk get more tech savvy, IT folk get more business savvy.

I want to encourage analysts to broaden and deepen their skill set with a focus of getting the job done, responding to demand and market opportunity and always adding value.

A Platform Primer For Business Analysts with Giovanni Focaraccio

Do you have a platform primer for business analysts to share? Let @Gio_Potenza and @Newbert know your insight over on Twitter.

About Joe Newbert

Joe is a consultant, a writer, a speaker and above all a teacher, who spends most of his time at the Business Change Academy helping people to grow their skills, bring meaningful change and see their career soar.

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