According to Howard
Podeswa (2009), the Noble Path is not just a methodology, but a well raid summary
of the questions and steps that a business analyst requires to deliver each
deliverable in a project (Podeswa, 2009). The paper will describe the purpose
and key activities and involvement of a business analyst in the Noble Path’s
Closeout phase of an IT project. The determination
of this segment is to ensure that the product launched fits well into the
organizational needs and purpose. Therefore, the business analyst is actively
involved in planning the closeout, IT product testing, deliverable review,
lesson learned review and finally rolling out the product to the organization
or the end user.
The primary objective is conducting a pre-implementation readiness review. This
objective ensures that the product and the plan are reviewed to ensure success
in the entire process. Furthermore, it ensures that the project team
understands the end user’s needs and assesses the product to ensure that the requirements
in the information technology tool are met (Podeswa, 2009).
this stage, all the changes should have been implemented and tested. However,
these transformations should not be released to the production. The core aim of this testing is to ensure that
the product meets the needs and purpose of the IT project. Furthermore, the
UAT, functional and non-functional testing should be completed and formally
signed off. The importance of this is ensuring that the functional and
non-functional features of the product are well understood by the project
manager and his team (Podeswa, 2009).
This entails the transition plan, the test sign-off, the traceability matrices,
and non-functional requirements. Additionally, the project manager must note
the schedule of changes (SOC) file, the S(L)Rs, S(L)As and the Projected
Service Outage (PSO). These input documents are important as they help the
project team and the manager in having archived documents for future reference
as well as implementation (Podeswa, 2009).
The most important deliverable at the closeout stage is the final evaluation
report. It carries the nitty-gritty of project and the product. It also
highlighted that functionality of the product and how the closeout should be
carried out by the project team. Similarly to the planning document, final
evaluation report creates an overview of all the processes carried out by the
team, the functional features of the IT tool, the budget, resources used and
responsibility carried out by each project team (Podeswa, 2009).
Has the client signed off on the
Have all the requirements been tested?
Have all the requirements been implemented?
Can each requirement be traced forward
to the tests?
Has the management approved the service
Has all the technical transition plans
been consolidated with the business needs?
Any appropriate plan for readying the
Any appropriate plan for readying the
Are there any plans for adequate data
Are all SLRs covered in the agreement
with the solution providers (SLAs)?
exploration has shown that a business analyst with his expertise and experience
is a vital pillar in estimating the required level of efforts in the closeout
phase. For example, he is the individual responsible for crafting the early
project closeout. That is, he creates the highlighted objectives, the
deliverables and the interview questions responsible for reviewing whether the
product meets the needs and desires of the client (Deutschlander, 2010). Additionally,
while looking at the predecessors and timing, it appears that the business
analyst is responsible for user acceptance and testing. This means that he will
help the customer in developing test scenario and cases. That is, they will
help walk the customer through the UAT and assist sign off and get the client’s
approval. The role is significant as it becomes an entire solution as it
sustains the wait as the team is preparing the rollout (Podeswa, 2009).
Therefore, the business analyst presence in this testing and implementation is
important in ensuring the success of the project.
the business analyst plays an important role in deliverable and milestone
review. Naturally, business analysts are involved in diverse project
milestones, delivery review, sign off and review of all the project
deliverables (Palinski, 2003). Therefore, his involvement in this process validates
the sign-off and completion of the project deliverables and milestones. By
doing this, the business analyst ensures that all the project needs and tasks
were completed on time and the deliverables sent to the client and received the
sign-off (Parnell, 2012). Furthermore, he may conduct a further follow-up to
makes sure that the deliverables were also paid for. This happens despite the
fact that the financial aspect of the project is held by the project manager.
every project, a review of the lesson learned is a critical session that helps
in gaining insight into what please the client and what did not meet their
needs and expectations. Critical thinking, the project manager is expected to
facilitate the session; however, the business analyst should act as the primary
communication agent with the client’s team. Therefore, the business analyst
should understand the client’s objectives so that they can review and discuss
specific activities and tasks of the said project (Podeswa, 2005). Finally, as
highlighted above, the business analyst holds a position as the primary
official responsible for rolling out the solutions to the end user. This task is achieved through a close
association with the project manager. During this task, the business analyst
functions as the primary technical liaison who works closely with the project’s
technical team in resolving any issue that crops up. After everything is
confirmed to be working right, then he leads the rollout of the product to the
customer or end user (Deutschlander, 2010).
every project, a customer’s or end user’s satisfaction is the key focus of the
organization. Therefore, the organization must deploy both the business analyst
and the project manager to the project site so as to ensure that all activities
run as per the plan and satisfaction of the client. In doing so, the closeout
phase will be a smooth flow of event as the product is handed or rollout out to
the consumer. For that reason, the technical know-how of the business analyst
should be considered so as to ensure successful closeout of the project plan.