Amanda Foster, Change Manager at Woolworths, talks about the golden thread of business analysis in solution delivery with Charlene Seini, in business analysis and the change manager.
Job titles don’t always necessarily reflect responsibilities, please tell us what you do and what your role entails?
As a Change Manager, my responsibility is ensuring that people who will be impacted by the organisational change are engaged and remain engaged during the life-cycle of the initiative, from project initiation through to implementation, so that they are ready and able to accept and adopt the change once it is operational.
In what way does business analysis interface, support and / or enable your accountabilities and responsibilities?
Business analysis defines the change through requirements gathering, and change management helps ensure that the appropriate stakeholders are engaged with the business analyst. The gathered business requirements shape the change, which I need to understand and communicate to the rest of the stakeholder group to help them transition. Once operational, there is a feedback to the business analyst to assist with any challenges being experienced in the new ways of working.
In what way does poor quality business analysis impact and / or limit your ability to deliver effectively?
When the change is not clearly defined, the change manager is required to spend much more time explaining questions from stakeholders and dealing with far more resistance than would otherwise have been necessary had proper consultation and definition been done up front. Complete and clear artefacts are essential to help the organisation transition as simply and smoothly as possible.
How could business analysts optimally focus and deliver in order to better support your capability?
Business stakeholder management is of paramount importance, so talk in business terms, rather than technical jargon, and use a friendly notation to present business processes.
Give the “big picture” landscape first, before delving into the detail, and make a clear distinction of what the changes are from the current ways of working, as well as what is staying the same in the new ways of working.
These approaches help ensure that requirements are communicated with familiarity and allow the stakeholders to better understand and appreciate the change ahead.
Business analysis is not exclusive to business analysts; it is a discipline performed throughout business change. What business analysis activities do you perform as part of your role?
For a high-performing team, role clarity is crucial. If there is a business analyst on the team, I will not perform that role, but I will ask to be included on workshops so that I can listen to the discussions that formulate the requirements. Stakeholder analysis and business requirements are two key areas where the roles intersect. However, each role approaches these two areas from different – yet complementary – perspectives.
‘Business Analysis And The Change Manager with Amanda Foster‘ was first published in the 2016 Inter-View Report. You can learn more about business analysis and the change manager by chatting on Twitter with @ConnectAmanda and @CharleneSeini.