I think I Nailed It – Commercial World Wants the BA – CHEAP!

Oh yeah, more anecdotal data tells me silicon valley wants SO MUCH MORE for so much less!It could be businesses in general, as opposed to just silicon valley, but the R & Rs for Business Analyst look a lot like a combination of PM and Chief Systems Engineer – two people!

We’ll have to wait and see how this goes. You know, whether or not this combining of roles works. I think it’s pretty risky to believe you can get effective, I say again, effective, business analysis and technical expertise in the same person for the salary of one person.

I understand the driving force behind such a change, but I also know that in woodworking and a lot of other craftsman, artist, creative fields, a single tool that does too many things, doesn’t do any well.

Think about it – what do we PMs have to have in our tool kit? All these people skills, technology skills and process skills. Now add deep technical knowledge and skills. How effective can we be? How about this – could we be even more effective if we keep the roles separate? I really think if you get the best and brightest for both roles the project would no doubt be better off.

There is only so much role consolidation a project can take before failure becomes more probable. Yes, many PMs now are asked to be all these things, and the project failure rates provided by the updated CHAOS Report Survey results (2004) from the Standish Group, tells us that we are still not achieving successful project completions 53% of the time. (53% comes from the survey data related to ‘challenged’ projects. They may have had value, but were not finished.) I attribute part of this high failure rate to asking too much of the project individuals. Stress is increased, lowering performance.

Let me know if you want to discuss this topic further.

Jim Sloane, OPM3CC, PMP, CM

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