Agile BA Training

[Warning – this article includes a sales pitch. You have been warned :)]

It’s been an exciting few months here at Its All Design Towers. I met up with a couple of training companies at BA2014 last September and I’ve been working with one of them – Business Analyst Solutions – to develop a training course that focuses specifically on how to be a business analyst on an agile project.

The result is Business Analysis in an Agile Environment – it runs over 3 days (or there’s a shortened 2 day version) and gets really in depth into agile BA practices and techniques.

Because I like to learn by doing, we’ve structured the course very much as a hands-on role play kind of thing – it follows the story of an imaginary agile project, and each module represents a day in the life of a business analyst on the project, working through early project activities (vision, scoping, planning) and then into ongoing analysis work – feature definition, options engineering, detailed functional design using BDD, and so on. The sample project follows the Scrum framework but also incorporates elements of Business Analyst Designer Method.

We ran a pilot of the course earlier this year (call it a Minimum Viable Product if you like) and at the end of the pilot we had a retrospective (in strict Scrum terminology it was a review but we called it a retrospective) and gathered feedback from the delegates. We got a lot of positive feedback – the delegates liked the structure and the content and also the informal learning style. We also got a number of improvement points, which you’d expect from a pilot (that’s what it’s for!). In true agile style, we structured the improvement points into a backlog and worked on them in priority order and finally now we have a polished product that’s ready to go.

Running the pilot was a really interesting experience. Having to explain a concept to somebody else forces you to really understand it yourself, and I gained a lot personally from delivering the training. I also had the opportunity to hear about the agile experiences of some of the delegates who had already been involved in agile projects – it was really useful to find out what had worked for them – which wasn’t always the same as what has worked for me!

So, here’s the sales pitch bit. The course is available to the public – generally in London, UK (see this link for course dates) and it can also be run on-site, either in the UK, abroad or even on the moon. You should come along, because you’re worth it. :)

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