Before we understand the role of a BA in scrum model, let’s first dig deep in understanding the scrum model more.
What is Scrum?
In today’s world, we have guidelines, policies, rules, procedures etc. to be followed in any sector/area that we work. Similarly, when it comes to IT industry, there are standard guidelines defined in the form of different methodologies and models. ‘Scrum’ falls in one among those.
Scrum is a framework designed to have a smoother functioning of the projects. Scrum attempts to deliver the project in regular intervals of time to the customer, i.e., defined in the form of sprint. A lot more of activities take part in the scrum process. At a high level, the main advantages of implementing scrum in the projects are:
- Quick delivery to the client
- Focuses on more implementation over documentation
- Team Management becomes easy
- Adaptable model
- Increases productivity of the team
Role of a BA in Agile Scrum:
The vital roles who take part in this scrum team can be differentiated as,
- Development team
- Scrum Master (Sometimes, BA itself acts as Scrum Master)
- Product Owner (Depending on the project, BA itself would be a PO or it might be different)
Even though the scrum framework has not defined any specific role for a BA does not proclaim that having a BA in scrum makes no sense at all.
Let me pose a question here, “When we say development team (who form a part of scrum team), do we have to interpret that only team who exhibit technical knowledge persist here?” If that is true, then there would not be any need for a tester, release and implementation team at all.
“Who assures the quality?” and “Who pushes the code to production?”- Sure, not the development team. Therefore, scrum references ‘development team’ as group of people having different areas of specialization/technical/non-technical aspects that they do have-not only technical skills. One of those skills exhibiting person would be ‘Business Analyst’.
So, having said that it can be summarized as either BA role is existing as an individual entity in any organization in scrum model or BA directly takes up the responsibility of a PO/Scrum master in driving the project.
What does a BA do in Agile Scrum?
A typical Business Analyst stands as a medium of interaction between the client and IT team. For a project execution, we can come out with various number of responsibilities that a BA has based on the above statement.
- In the initial phase of a project, BA should gather requirements
- Analyse the requirements
- Communicate them to the team
- Raise clarifications, if any to the client and get back them to the team
- Documenting the requirements
- Prioritizing the requirements with the help of Product Owner and client
- Structuring them to various iterations (Sprints)
- Framing Epics, epics to user stories, describing the acceptance criteria for every story
- Once sprint is started, managing the team by tracking the team’s effort on day-to-day basis
- Conducting daily stand-ups, identifying impediments and making them resolve
- Handling the incident management, if any
- Planning the next sprint backlogs ahead of time, that constitutes to ‘Sprint Refinement’
- Driving UAT and UAT to Production
- Validating all the user stories implementation as per the requirements defined
- Client engagement at every end of sprint