Business Analyst Definition Of Terms

Business Analyst Definition Of Terms:


These definitions are helpful to business analysts of all levels.  We created this list to help others gain a better understanding of some common business analyst terms and definitions.


Activity Diagram – An activity diagram is a UML diagram that is used to model a process. It can help describe the flow of control within a system. It is used to monitor behaviors performed by the components of a business process or software system, the order in which the actions take place, and the conditions that coordinate the actions in a specific order.


Agile – Is a methodology alternative to traditional project management, typically used in developing software. These techniques are used in replacement of waterfall or sequential development.


Alternative Flow – This is a scenario found in a Use Case’s that lead to Success, but is not from the normal or intended course.


Burndown Chart – A graphical chart or representation of work that is left to do vs the time you have to do it in. It helps keep things on track and shows you what you need to focus on accomplishing in a set time frame.


Business Entity Model – A model that documents entities that a business process uses and interacts with.


CBAP – Certified Business Analysis Professional is a world recognized certification for business analysts. Usually the first of the major exams taken for a business analyst


CCBA – Certification of Competency in Business Analysis is another world recognized certification for business analysts. This exam is for senior business analysts to show complete competency in business analysis.


Class Diagram – Is a diagram of relationships among classes in the Unified Modeling Language or UML. In software development classes and methods are backbones of computer code and this diagram shows there interactions.


Concentration Ratio – Simply the share of business in a given market                              


Cost Benefit Analysis – Process for calculating and comparing the cost and benefits of a project.


Database – Software used to store information. Different companies sell different databases some of the largest are Oracle, SAP, Microsoft Access, SQL and IBM DB2.


Database View – A database view is a stored query that you can execute for a certain result set.


Data Flow Diagram – A diagram that represents the flow of data through a system. It is often the primary step in creating a system overview.


ERD – Entity Relationship Diagram is used in database development or documentation. It shows how the tables in a database are related to each other so you can better understand those relationships to build query’s to search for information.


Fact Model – a Fact Model structures basic knowledge about business operations from a business point of view.


Fishbone Diagram – These can also be called Ishikawa diagrams named after the man who created them. They are casual diagrams that show the causes for a specific event which look like fish bones.



Gap Analysis –  Is the comparison of actual performance with potential performance. It is a way to see if the company is making the best use of its current resources.


 HTML – Hyper Text Markup Language is a computer language used for creating web pages and other information that can be displayed using web browsers such as “Firefox” and “Internet Explorer”.


Joint Application Development – It is primarily used to accelerate the design of software solutions for the most part. It involves continuous interaction with users and developers of an application reducing the chance of errors later on in the software development life cycle.


.NET – A Microsoft platform or Framework that incorporates applications and a suite of tools used for software development.


Non-Functional Requirement – A requirement that specifies criteria that can be used to judge the operation of a system or process rather than a specific behavior.


Primary Actor – Is a Use Case term used to describe the person using the system to achieve the goal.


Quality Assurance – Used to ensure quality of a product or service will be fulfilled. It can be monitoring, measuring, and comparison that used for error prevention


Quality Control – A review of all factors involved in a production , used to discover defects.


Requirement – In business a requirement is WHAT we must deliver to provide value.


Scrum – Used in agile software development it is a framework for managing software projects and application development.


SDLC – The Software Development Life Cycle explains the life cycle of software systems and applications.


Secondary Actor – Use Case term used to describe one from which the system needs assistance from to satisfy a goal.


Six Sigma – A set of tools and strategies for process improvement.


SQL – Structured Query Language is used to “query” a database for information. Database computer language used to “ask” the database for certain data.


Stakeholder Analysis – Process of identifying the people that are likely to be affected by the proposed action or solution to a business problem. You need to do this to address them and gather input from them.


SWOT Analysis – A strategic planning method used in evaluation of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats involved in a project.


Use Case – A list of steps defining the interaction between a role or “Actor” and a system to accomplish a goal. An Actor can be either human or non-human


User Story – Is simply a definition of what a end user does for their job in the company.


XML – A computer language similar to HTML in that it’s a markup language used to display websites.


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