Starting something new is always a great experience despite the result. A new challenge can bring you joy if the consequences are positive, while the bad experience is a good way to learn from your mistakes and evolve. It can be especially difficult if you are starting up a business. You need to have a solid plan, a dedicated development team, and enough resources in order to achieve the best outcome of your project.
When starting up a new business and deciding on the development process of your product, it is vital to define your company needs, find out who your potential customers are, and answer other basic questions. To know where to even start with the product you have in mind, you will need a business analyst in your development team. A business cannot survive without such an expert. Therefore, today, we will talk about the role of the business analyst in a startup and explore the responsibilities they will have during the project development.
Business Analyst’s Role and Responsibilities
First and foremost, it is essential to know what this type of specialist does. So, what does a business analyst do? A Business Analyst (BA) is a professional who analyzes the market and evaluates all the business processes. They engage with stakeholders, executives, and users in order to understand how these processes can be improved and if some new practices should be implemented. The role of a business analyst in a project is also to know how changes may affect the company’s products, solutions, and services. That is why these experts are able to deliver data-driven recommendations based on functionally and financially reasonable decisions.
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A startup leader has to understand why they even need a business analyst in their development team. The most common reason is if you are not a BA yourself. This expert has a specific set of skills that not every specialist possesses. If you came up with an idea and want to make a profitable software solution out of it, you will need such a professional. A business analyst is able to refine your idea, ask the right questions, and lead your product to the needed result. However, you should be informed about the responsibilities of BA to let them unleash their full potential. Thus, let’s get familiar with what they are responsible for:
Market and Data Analysis
A BA does a complete analysis on industry and target audience in order to understand if your startup is not keeping up with the general growth of the sphere. They also do the market analysis of the services and solutions offered by other companies. It is essential to know your competitors and be able to find something to oppose them. All the data related to your company and to the factors that influence it are taken into consideration, listed, and are used in your favor. Making this research is a vital step during the discovery phase, and BAs understand it clearly.
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Determining Initial Budget Estimates
Usually, a startup has a limited budget, and every dollar plays an important role. It can be a problem, because you need to deal with allocating all your resources between software product development, post-launch marketing, and other stages. That is why a meticulous analysis from a BA is required in order to avoid early financial missteps and make informed decisions. Technical background allows business analysts to estimate how many specialists and working hours the implementation of every feature may take. With this information in mind, it is possible to decide if your budget is enough to finish the project.
Building a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) provides fundamental functionality and helps to validate your ideas before spending all available resources on the final version of the product. So, this can also be suggested by a business analyst. You can also think about getting help from a company that offers software development services for startups in order to be sure that you and your BA are heading the right direction.
Business Idea Clarification
It is important for the team to know where the company is headed and why. In this case, a business analyst can clarify which direction will be the best for the startup to choose. The primary purposes of your solution, basic product KPIs, value proposition, and customer acquisition strategy – all of these details are set by your business analyst. They keep in mind that the implementation of the idea should also be convenient for developers and stakeholders.
Coming Up with Strategies
Business analysts use a set of certain step-by-step techniques and processes that are intended to improve business operations and help them to make strategic decisions during the analysis. Thus, you can be sure that your company will be able to continue its tasks and achieve the goals. The strategies about the company growth, industry market, team, and more can be built by a business analyst. Each of them will guarantee that the software development process will be more productive and that developers will build the best software solution.
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Prediction of Upcoming Changes
It is also important to understand which changes can take place in the future to be able to predict what can happen with your product. A business analyst is needed in these situations, because they can help your organization to become prepared and get you an idea of how to change things to your advantage.
Shaping the Development Activities
Planning the development process from MVP to the full-scale project is what a business analyst also does. The role of business analyst in project life cycle cannot be omitted, because they can help greatly in allocating the areas of responsibilities between the team members. They can also help with defining the workflow of the project development and assist a project manager and other team members in determining their tasks. Such solutions as data visualization tools and project management software can be utilized in the process.
BA’s responsibilities also include the validation of the draft with startup requirements and the assurance of compliance of the goals. During this procedure, BA ensures that the requirements of all participants are taken into account, and the needs of the stakeholders are satisfied. What the outcome of the project will be is also assessed by business analysts. Thus, all parties will be on the same page, and everything will be going in the right direction.
Types of Data Analysis That Improve Decision-Making
Business analyst has a certain skillset to be able to perform the tasks we mentioned and to implement the strategies made along the way. This specialist has an analytical thinker, decision-maker, and problem-solver all in one. They also are masters of documentation and visualization. There are several types of data analytics that BA can use individually or simultaneously to get the best insight out of the data.
- Descriptive analytics
This is the simplest type of analytics and the base for the other types. The key question of the type is “What happened?”, which means that by using this analysis you find the details of a situation. The technique encourages BAs to use metrics reporting, data aggregation and mining, clustering, as well as summary statistics. Any report that contains descriptive statistics and qualitative or quantitative data is an example of this technique.
- Diagnostic analytics
This type explores the reasons and uncovers correlations between variables. It helps to understand why the situation happened and is very useful for getting at the root of the issue. With this technique, a business analyst is able to find out how different factors relate to each other.
- Predictive analytics
As for this approach, it is all about what can happen in the future and is more complex than the previous two types of analytics. Statistical modeling is what is used by BAs in order to help in forecasting. They analyze the historical data and combine this knowledge with the recent trends in industry. As a result, it is possible to imagine likely scenarios and formulate strategies that are based on them.
- Prescriptive analytics
If the situation has already happened, and you wonder what should you do next, or you want to know how to make something happen, this is the time for prescriptive analytics. It takes into account all possible factors and assists business analysts in making recommendations for the future instead of figuring the outcomes.
A Business Analyst is an asset needed for any company. With their help, you can know about your startup something new, explore the possible paths your company can take, and form an understanding of where to move further with your goals. They know the ins and outs of the startup product and are able to show you how to stay within budget. That is why it is essential to have this expert under the roof. If you want to know more about the BA’s role in a startup project and their impact on the final result, please contact us.