A common problem I have come across recently seems to be that some stakeholders (and some of my family and friends) just don’t understand the role of BA and UX in eLearning. I believe this challenge can be absolutely solvable. Solving this however seems to be an ongoing process, and involves plugging the credibility gap, building relationships and promoting my role within the organisation. This I feel, has to be at a strategic level. It is essential that the senior decision makers understand the value of structured analysis, both within projects but also as an aid to strategic decision making.
This is a long term vision, and involves getting learning people like me involved much earlier in the project lifecycle, long before a solid concept has even been formed, a problem I have encountered many times before. One of the ways I try to get people on board is by delivering effective change. Showing the value of good requirements (and in contrast bad), is easy if you have a range of successful projects to draw on. In my case, I explain the times I worked for Pharmaceutical companies where a full stop can kill or save someone’s life. Being that blunt I have found turns some heads. I also have found that you need to build trust-based relationships. I try and concentrate on relationships with my stakeholders and keep them informed, engaged and always follow through on my promises.
Hence, good stakeholder management is essential to BA and UX. I am famous in the contracts I work in for having a reputation for innovation and creativity. I don’t always stick to a static set of analysis techniques, I always consider what is most appropriate with showing respect for all concerned. One significant consideration that I also have found is that BA and UX has is objectivity. I provide an objective and “real” view of the world to your clients or stakeholders. These roles try to expose the bigger-picture, and work with my stakeholders to understand where their project, change or innovation fits. Although, objectivity does give me a challenge me in a way that a business stakeholder may be unable to, and so the trick is I found is that I should never shy away from the “difficult” or “politically sensitive” question, but the key is respect. Hope this gives you all an insight to what I do.