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A Business Analyst Hackathon: Explore and Unlock New Thinking

Hackathons for business analysis teams become brainstorming and development sessions for generating new ideas.

March 30, 2017

Hackathons are no longer just for coders. They can play a valuable role in nurturing creativity and thinking outside the box. Companies use these intense brainstorming and development sessions to generate new ideas in the world of business analysis.

Running a business is often about taking care of everyday operations, managing your organization’s resources, and mitigating risks. But wouldn’t it be nice to wake up one day with a fresh idea of how to transform your business?

Unfortunately, knowing your domain inside and out is usually coupled with the inability to innovate and generate new concepts. But the good news is that there is a way to bring some fresh insights into your business, creating a business solution from ideation to a proof of concept: a business analyst “hackathon.”

Hack Your Business

You’ve probably heard the word “hackathon” before, conjuring up images of a room filled with laptops, cables, coffee cups, and coders. Hackathons are primarily thought of as events for developers to gather in one place to create software for a specific industry or application type, using a particular programming language, API, or framework, and often for a cause or purpose.

The aim of a business analyst hackathon is to unite business-minded team members, allowing them to investigate market potential and new business opportunities while cultivating and maintaining an innovative spirit.

A business analyst (BA) hackathon, like one we recently held at SoftServe, creates a structure and process around idea development through detailed analysis of market, competitors, and trends.

Ways for Obtaining New Ideas and Innovation

So what exactly does it look like?

Several teams of analysts should meet with customers, SMEs, and other stakeholders to discuss the goals and expected outcomes of the BA hackathon. Such goals can include anything from increasing the client’s business to checking their acquisitions, financial status, and much more.

Then the teams choose what to focus on and dive deep into information search and analysis. At our own recent BA hackathon, our Business Analysis Office at SoftServe developed this step based on our own unique research framework. BA research is not just about using Google; to get insights into the clients’ business, analysts should have a series of interviews with dedicated stakeholders (project managers, product managers, product owners, business owners, account managers, SMEs, architects, etc.).

BAs and stakeholders working together can lead to amazing synergy and results. And BA hackathon outcomes can cover anything from defining a client’s product position on the market to a detailed feature analysis of competitors’ products to finding a perfect niche for the client through identifying industry trends.

A BA hackathon is a great chance to get a fresh look at your business and to generate new ideas, leading to innovation and higher profitability.

Don’t hesitate! Contact BA Office at SoftServe and we’ll hack ideas for you!

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