What makes a good project good? How should a successful project be implemented? How important is the communication between interested parties such as developers and project analysts? Well the answers to all those questions will illustrate that proper and constant communication is often the difference between success and failure. You simply have to get it right.
Let’s first consider the job specifications of the project analyst. What tasks do they perform and why and how important is their work in relation to the overall success of the project? Well the short answer is many tasks and very important.
The analyst needs to examine two aspects of the task namely the project itself and the company operating the project. The two go hand in hand. Knowing the ins and outs of the project without a detailed knowledge of the culture, history and aims of the company produces an incomplete analysis.
It is difficult if not impossible to deliver the best advice to the company if you as the analyst don’t know how it ticks. Who are the competitors of the company? What rules and conditions does the company or division apply to its staff and projects? What are the capabilities of the company or division? What are its strengths and weaknesses? What is their vision?
Any analysis of a project can never been judged in isolation. Every project must be examined in situ and as part of the whole, the company whole.
And it goes without saying that the project analysis must have the technical knowledge and expertise required by stakeholders and developers within the project so as to understand how and where it can be improved.
But having that expertise and knowing the organization inside out does not an excellent analyst make. Now they must communicate their search activities and report their findings in a clear and beneficial manner. Their communication must be able to be understood by the company without a shadow of doubt. Clarity at all times is vital. Mind you the analyst is actually communicating with two separate entities – the company itself and the developers working within the company. And the language for each needs to be appropriate to their levels of expertise and understanding. Communicating with the developers must be crystal clear thus enabling the developers to create the system or application required by the company.
The communication skills required include both written and verbal. The analyst needs to extract information as well as deliver same. Can an analyst also work as a project manager on the same project? Yes, depending on the size of the project and provided the requirements of both roles are described in detail.
A project may well have various staff members working on various tasks. The project analyst will either investigate the project according to specific guidelines or adopt a roving brief analyzing whatever aspects of the project are currently in progress.
The added pressures on analysts due to IT and other developments, makes their difficult task even harder. Knowing how to use the relevant software for modeling purposes takes skill and experience.
Discovering flaws in the design or application of a project is vital but only part of the job. Communicating the facts to developers and others completes the circle. Good communication has never been as important as the cost of failure appears to be constantly on the increase. And the channels of good communication must forever remain open. The analyst and developers must work as one. Every project is unique and every project deserves and demands the best communication.
What are some of the ways you maintain good communication and relationships between business analysts and developers?
Leave a comment below and let us know.
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