The Business Analysis Core Concept Model™ (BACCM™) is a conceptual framework for business analysis outlined in the Business Analysis Body of Knowledge® Guide (BABOK® Guide). The Guide defines business analysis as “the practice of enabling change in an enterprise by defining needs and recommending solutions that deliver value to stakeholders”. Business analysis encompasses a wide range of skills, knowledge, and tasks that may vary in form, order, or importance for individual business analysts or for various initiatives within an organization.
The purpose of BACCM™ is to provide a common conceptual framework to business analysts so that they can perform and discuss their work in a common terminology that is independent of perspective, industry, methodology, or their levels in the organization. Additionally, the BACCM helps business analysts perform better business analysis by holistically evaluating the relationships among these six concepts and also by evaluating the impact of these concepts and relationships at any point during a project in order to establish both a foundation and a path forward.
The BACCM consists of six core concepts: Change, Need, Solution, Stakeholder, Value, and Context. All core concepts are equally important and necessary. There is no ranking among these - no single concept holds greater importance or significance over any other concept. Each core concept is defined by and dependent on the other five core concepts and cannot be fully understood until all the concepts are understood.
Let’s review the six core concepts in detail, along with their definitions as provided by the BABOK Guide:
1) Change: Change is an act of transformation within an organization in response to a need. The need can be internal or necessitated by an external event such as a disruption in the market. The aim of the change is to improve the performance of an enterprise through deliberate actions controlled through business analysis activities.
2) Need: Need is a problem or opportunity to be addressed by the business analyst. Needs can cause changes by motivating stakeholders to act. Changes can also cause needs by eroding or enhancing the value delivered by existing solutions or creating the need for new solutions.
3) Solution: A specific way of satisfying one or more needs in a context. A solution satisfies a need by resolving a problem faced by stakeholders or enabling stakeholders to take advantage of an opportunity.
4) Stakeholder: A group or individual with a relationship to the change, the need, or the solution. Stakeholders are grouped based on their relationship to the needs, changes, and solutions.
5) Value: The worth, importance, or usefulness of something to a stakeholder within a context. Value can be tangible or intangible. Examples of tangible values are potential or realized returns, gains, and improvements. Intangible value often has a significant motivational component, such as a company's reputation or employee morale.
6) Context: The circumstances that influence, are influenced by, and provide understanding of the change. A change always occurs within an environment. A context is a wide-ranging term that can include everything from an organization’s culture, mission, and demographics to government policies, competitors, products and sales. In order to successfully implement the change, the business analyst must carefully define and analyse the context within which the change is being implemented.
Let’s consider an example to illustrate the BACCM in more detail. The wave of digitization is transforming many traditional industries. A traditional retail business that operated brick and mortar stores for years must now compete with e-commerce companies that provide the same goods to customers but with additional benefits such as convenience (shop from home), wide range of products and attractive discounts (due to the lower cost business models of e-commerce players). In order to respond to this change in market dynamics, a business analysis task can be performed at a traditional brick and mortar retail store using the BACCM. Here is how the six core concepts may be analysed in this example:
1) Change: Provide e-commerce solutions to customers who prefer shopping online. This will require completely new business processes and functions to fulfil online orders.
2) Need: Rising popularity and market share of e-commerce competitors who directly compete in the marketplace with the company, to attract a growing share of customers, transactions and volume of goods sold.
3) Solution: Depending upon the company’s organizational structure, capabilities and time-sensitive nature of the change, the probable (but not exhaustive) list of solutions could be to implement an IT project that enables the organization to set up its own e-commerce store, partner with existing e-commerce players to use their infrastructure for order fulfilment or acquire an existing e-commerce player and merge it with the company’s existing operations.
4) Stakeholder: The stakeholders, in this case, are almost from all functional areas – sales, marketing, IT, HR and Operations – within the organization.
5) Value: The tangible value, in this case, can be increase in sales and increase (or maintaining) the company’s market share. The intangible value can include transforming the organization to a digital future, introduction of new talent and ideas.
6) Context: The context for this proposed change can be the growing market share and popularity of e-commerce players, changing demographic profile of the customers, improvements in the digital infrastructure in the country, entry of foreign players in the market and easier government regulations towards setting up of e-commerce companies.