Blue chip professional skills from an independent

Business analysis

We provide general and technical business analysis services.

We are strong on process design and software solution design.

Requirements gathering - starting out

The first step in any project will be for us to understand in more depth what the project is about and what you would like it to achieve. You may have a clear idea already and just want someone to do the legwork for you but on the occasions when you do not we are happy to get involved at a much earlier stage. We can review current processes and make recommendations for the future.

In any event, the first step would be 'the requirements gathering' - this entails working with you for a relatively short period of time to produce a scoping document which would include:

  • writing down our findings (so you can check we understand your business);
  • our making various suggestions culminating in a single recommendation for the future;
  • suggesting a scope for a project to implement the solution;
  • an explanation of the effort involved in producing this, internally and externally;
  • costs estimates;
  • high level project planning, including actions and responsibilities;
  • clarity on deliverables and what will be needed for the project to be viewed as a success;
  • risks and risk mitigation;
  • a list of project roles and who will fulfill them (such as internal sponsor, escalations points and so on).

Typically this will take less than 10% of the overall project time and it will give you a great feel for the solution without committing to spending too much budget. This approach has two main benefits:

  • it lets you get a feel for the work involved and our approach;
  • it gives you sight of a well conceived final project budget very early on - so you stay in control.

Next steps - the real project

Once everything has been agreed at high level we can begin the detailed design and planning. This process verifies the effort and cost estimates so far and provides reasons for variance. It will also provide greater analysis of project risks.

In practice, the detail of this section will depend on the deliverables and how we agree to build them. Will there be a significant software portion? How collaborative will our approach be? These are just some of the considerations.

You can get more detail from other sections on this site; our section on Software design and development gives a more detailed view of how the project might progress.

Project management

Strong project management is crucial. We provide weekly (or more frequent) progress updates with actions completed, costs to date, expected cost and time to complete and updates on any risks, together with any other reports we may agree upon. This will form the basis for us (and for you) to monitor the progress of the project. We would expect the project to proceed well, but if anything does go awry the more quickly we know about it the better chance we all have of bringing the project in successfully.

In summary, we repeatedly deliver project success by doing a lot of hard and detailed project management work up front and ongoing throughout the project. With this approach we find the actual project work itself proceeds smoothly, calmly and without surprises.

To use a cliche, we manage for success.