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During requirements elaboration

Once youve defined the project scope, your days may take on a more syncopated pace. Youll be
working from a requirements management plan (whether written or not, by this time youll have a plan
of sorts) and exploring specific sections of the overall scope in more detail, creating visuals,
requirements documents, and reviewing them with your team. These days tend to break up into about
one-third meetings and two-thirds independent work. As a new business analyst, you might start a
project at this phase under the wing of a senior business analyst or project manager.

In most organizations, the bulk of time is spent in elaboration. These activities are often likened to
peeling the layers of an onion as you progressively dive into deeper details and strengthen the alignment
around the solution. From elicitation to elaboration, a shift from ambiguity to relative certainty occurs.
Not to say that elaboration is a purely logical progression. You will encounter problems, unknowns,
unexpected cases, and there are a variety of interesting problems to solve.

As the issues become smaller and the risk of drastic change is minimized, you will begin to review the
requirements with the implementation team to get their input on the direction and the overall solution.
Many organizations use document reviews or walk-throughs to ensure the entire team understands the
requirements and can implement them. The final requirements specifications need to blend what the
business wants with what can be accomplished given the project and system constraints. During this
time you will be helping negotiate trade-offs and often solving technical problems. Some requirements
are fairly simple to implement. Others create challenges and involve multiple iterations where you clarify
the business need, delve into the details of possible solution, go back to the business with ideas, and so
on and so forth until you obtain consensus on a go-forward plan.

As developers design the system, youll be involved in discussions or formal reviews, ensuring that the
business requirements are fulfilled. In some organizations, there are formal traceability practices in place
and you could be involved in mapping requirements to design or test documentation to ensure the
requirements are covered completely.