Many business analysts are evaluated for performance based on measurables such as how well their work satisfied internal quality measures (quality checklists, compliance with the template), defect counts (essential, but often quite arbitrary) and on whether they completed their tasks and got approvals on-time. While those measures have value, I’ve found that one can give the appearance of doing very well in these areas, and still not necessarily be a successful business analyst.

If I am incented to complete work on time, and make sure all the quality boxes are checked, that’s exactly what I’ll do, and likely stop there. However, if I am evaluated based on  how well my work puts others in a position to deliver a successful solution, I won’t stop with check boxes and dates, but will strive to maximize the value of my work to those who will use it to do theirs.

While traditional quantitative measures are useful, they don’t tell the whole story. I’ve found that regular, qualitative feedback from stakeholders and team mates completes the business analysis success narrative.

During my time as a consultant and business analysis practitioner, I’ve come to rely more heavily on the following for determining whether I’ve been successful in my efforts. To me, business analysis success is:

  • Seeing a solution you had a part in delivering solve problems and have a positive impact.
  • Appreciation for your contributions and recognition from respected peers and leaders for a job well done.
  • Trusted advisor relationships with business and delivery stakeholders.
  • Being personally requested for upcoming projects, or hearing, “I’m glad you’re on this project” from business stakeholders and delivery team members.
  • Opportunities for growth and satisfaction in every change initiative.
  • A rewarding career path with new challenges, opportunities and responsibilities.

How do you define business analysis success?