Different types of reviews are conducted for business
analysis work products. Each is tailored to the needs of the organization
and business analyst, and uses these dimensions:
• Objectives: defining the purpose of the review.
• Techniques: identifying either a formal or informal way to perform the review.
• Participants: identifying who should take part in the review activity.
Each review is focused on a work product, not the skills or actions of the participants. The work product may be a package of several deliverables, a single deliverable, a portion of a deliverable, or work in process. For a completed work product, the objective of the review is usually to remove defects or inform the reviewers about the content. For work in process, the review may be conducted to resolve an issue or question. Each review includes the business analyst as a participant. Reviewers may be peers, especially for work in process, or stakeholders, who validate that the work product is complete and correct. The review steps depend on the technique used. Reviews can include: • an overview of the work product and review objectives,
• checklists and reference materials that can be used by reviewers, • reviewing the work product and documenting the findings, and
• verifying any rework. Using feedback from reviewers, the business analyst updates the work product.
.1 Objectives Objectives are clearly communicated to all participants prior to the review. Objectives may include one or more goals, for example:
• to remove defects,
• to ensure conformance to specifications or standards,
• to ensure the work product is complete and correct,
• to establish consensus on an approach or solution,
• to answer a question, resolve an issue, or explore alternatives,
• to educate reviewers about the work product, and
• to measure work product quality. .
2 Techniques Reviews can be formal or informal. The techniques used during a review are selected to support the objectives of the review. The following techniques are commonly used by business analysts when conducting reviews:
• Inspection: a formal technique that includes an overview of the work product, individual review, logging the defects, team consolidation of defects, and follow-up to ensure changes were made. The focus is to remove defects and create a high quality work product. While usually performed by peers, it can also be used for stakeholder reviews.
• Formal Walkthrough (also known as Team Review): a formal technique that uses the individual review and team consolidation activities often seen in inspection. Walkthroughs are used for peer reviews and for stakeholder reviews.
• Single Issue Review (also known as Technical Review): a formal technique focused on either one issue or a standard in which reviewers perform a careful examination of the work product prior to a joint review session held to resolve the matter in focus.
• Informal Walkthrough: an informal technique in which the business analyst runs through the work product in its draft state and solicits feedback. Reviewers may do minimal preparation before the joint review session.
• Desk Check: an informal technique in which a reviewer who has not been involved in the creation of the work product provides verbal or written feedback.
• Pass Around: an informal technique in which multiple reviewers provide verbal or written feedback. The work product may be reviewed in a common copy of the work product or passed from one person to the next.
• Ad hoc: an informal technique in which the business analyst seeks informal review or assistance from a peer.