Adrian Reed beim BA Camp 2014

Adrian Reed beim BA Camp 2014

Workshop title: Pre-Project Problem Analysis
Speaker: Adrian Reed
Language: English
Time: 11.05.2016 10:00-17:00

We have interviewed Adrian about his session! Scroll down to listen to the interview.

About this Session

Successful projects need a clear direction and a definitive destination.  This starts with a solid understanding of the business problem or opportunity that exists.  When the business problem is clearly understood, it is much easier to elicit and analyse business requirements and understand the business value that the project will deliver.  Requirement prioritisation also becomes much easier, as the critical success factors are clearly understood.

A key skill-set to achieving this level of clarity is problem analysis.

This course focusses on how to carry out problem analysis either before a project has been initiated or during the project’s early stages.    The session starts with a broad definition of problem analysis, and then focusses on understanding the high-level “Why” and the “What” of projects.   The session continues by focussing on how to define a high-level “project concept summary”

This session covers:

So what is problem analysis

  • Why is it important?
  • How and where does it fit into the project lifecycle?
  • What activities and deliverables might it involve?

Understanding the “why”:

During the course, you’ll learn and apply specific techniques for working with stakeholders to understand why a project is necessary, including techniques that allow you to analyse and define a specific business problem or opportunity and techniques for defining project success criteria:

  • Defining a problem or opportunity statement
  • Working with stakeholders to understand and define the business value a project will deliver, using an adapted version of the balanced scorecard
  • Defining Critical Success Factors and Key Performance Indicators for the project, so success can be measured and quantified

Understanding the “what”

You’ll learn and apply techniques for understanding what requirements must be met to solve the problem/leverage the opportunity, including:

  • Developing a project concept summary: Working with stakeholders to create a high-level vision for a project, agree the concept-level requirements and the broad scope.   Working with them to validate those requirements.
  • Identifying conceptual solution options: Identifying out potential solution options and establishing which broad options are most likely to be suitable

This is designed to be a practical session that will provide tools and techniques that you can use early in the project process.  These techniques are also useful and valuable throughout the project, in cases where the organisational, business or scope changes take place whilst the project is in flight.

Techniques covered during course

  • Defining a problem/opportunity statement
  • Defining critical Success Factors/Key Performance Indicators
  • Balanced Business Scorecard
  • Eliciting high-level requirements using the “roles and goals” technique
  • Business Use Case diagrams
  • Brainstorming
  • Concept-level gap analysis

Course format

The course is designed to be interactive and engaging.  Exercises and group work are introduced to ensure that learning is cemented and the material is made as concrete as possible.

The course material is designed to be a useful aid-memoir when you are “in the field”.

Course attendees

This course is most suitable for practicing business analysts who want to increase their knowledge of up-front problem analysis techniques, specifically relating to developing an up-front project concept summary.

This course is also suitable for project managers who work alongside BAs who wish to increase their knowledge of how a project concept summary can be developed.

This full-day workshop takes place at the BA Bootcamp on May 11, 2016 in Vienna:

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About Adrian Reed

Adrian ReedAdrian Reed is Principal Consultant and Director at Blackmetric Business Solutions,  where he provides business analysis consultancy and training solutions to a range of clients in varying industries.  He speaks internationally on topics relating to business analysis and business change, is President of the UK chapter of the IIBA, and a true advocate of the analysis profession.

You can read Adrian’s blog at and follow him on Twitter at

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Interview with Adrian Reed

As part of our BA Podcast we have interviewed Adrian. He told us some interesting things why companies invest to little in problem analysis and what to do against it.

Listen to here to our interview with Adrian:

Download of audio files in formats MP4, MP3, Ogg, Opus


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