In an era where businesses are advancing in an extremely fast-paced environment, to solve any business problem, a set of techniques and disciplines are used by analysts to come to a solution. These all-pervasive techniques, known as Business Analytics techniques, are used to build models for driving future growth and success of the business. Thus, business analytics techniques are great tools to improve businesses’ profitability, increase market share and provide a greater return. In the present article, we have shortlisted the top 10 business analytics techniques that will change the face of the industry.
Business analytics techniques are changing the way each brand and business is functioning by aiding them to make strategic decisions. These techniques are set to change the face of the business world in the coming years. Business analytics techniques are used to comprehend the organizational structure, understand its issues, search for areas of improvement, recommend solutions, and boost the value of the business.
How Do Analysts Use Business Analytics Techniques to Boost Success?
By collecting information through discussions and interviews
By asking questions
By investigating information
By facilitating meetings and workshops
By creating business models
By analyzing processes, scenarios, data, and reports
By capturing assumptions, constraints, and requirements
By creating storyboards, cards, and wire-frames
Explaining business processes and requirements to the IT department
By reviewing the solution design
By reviewing test scenarios and test cases
By shadowing business experts
By doing data analysis and using analytic tools
By using root cause analysis and process analysis
Below Are the Top 10 Business Analytics Techniques:
1. SWOT Analysis
SWOT implies S: strength W: weakness O: opportunities and T: threats
One of the most popular, commonly applied quick, and simple business analytics techniques for analysis at any stage of the business project. It’s a practical analytic tool to analyze the achievement and potential of the business. It is used at an enterprise level for smaller businesses and start-ups.
Four elements that define the SWOT analysis technique are:
Internal Factors: These are the factors over which the company have control and can change them.
External Factors: These are the factors that are going on outside the company over which the company has no control and cannot change them.
Identification of the factors and processes that gives the business an advantage over its competitors. Like how well the business is doing.
- Identifying unique and low-cost resources
- Strong leadership
- Brand name
- Top performing employees
- Best-selling products in the market and their share
- Excellent customer support
- good reputation
Identify the factors and processes that are holding the business back from growing and doing better. What does the business lack?
- Identifying limitations like underperformers
- Office politics
- Rivalries in the team
- Unsupportive team
- Improvement areas
- Reasons for losing sales
- Bad product or service
- Inconsistent service delivery
- Poor customer support
- Lazy employees
- Budget limitations
Identification of the factors and resources outside the business that can be used to the advantage of the business
- Identifying improvement areas and good opportunities which are generally time-sensitive and leveraged quickly
- Recognizing customer needs
- Providing products suitable for target customers
- Digital transformation
- Press/media coverage of the company
Identification of the external factors that can hurt or limit the success of the business.
- Identifying external risks
- Upgraded competitor products
- New technology like AI or IoT
- Competitor markets
- Changes in consumer behavior
- Change in the economy
- Increased supplier costs
- Cyber security risks
- Socio-economic changes
- Negative press/media coverage
Benefits of SWOT Analysis
To get a Bird’s eye view of the business and to get greater insight into how the business operates.
To improve specific campaigns and projects
To develop tangible roadmaps and timelines for future potential solutions.
2. MOST Analysis
MOST implies M: Mission O: Objective S: Strategy and T: Tactics
It is one of the most powerful yet simple business analytics techniques to evaluate what a business does and plans to achieve its goals and what it needs to do to maintain strategic alignment. Every organization has its unique business plan for its specific mission. Over time, it is easy to lose sight of the plan due to numerous daily activities.
This causes deviation from the vision that the management initially had. This is where the MOST analysis technique proves valuable to the company so that everyone can move in the same direction of its mission.
- Mission: every company has its overreaching purpose with which its starts and a goal to accomplish in the future. If the mission is clear, it is easier to analyze the other factors.
- Objective: The set of goals that the company aims for itself are its objectives.
- The objectives need to be S.M.R.A.T.
- S- Specific
- M- Measurable
- A- Achievable
- R- Realistic
- T- Timely
- Strategy: The techniques that a company uses to complete or reach its goals are its strategies.
- Tactics: The procedure by which the company carried out its strategies is referred to as Tactics. It can be short-term, operational plans and projects.
- Mission: A pet spa wants to make itself the best and busiest spa in the city.
- Objective: to grow sales by 10 % next month
- Strategy: To Invest in radio advertising
- Tactics: To sign a contract with the radio channel, write a script and hire a voice artist.
Benefits of MOST Analysis
It is a structured technique used by every working level in a company from the top to down.
This technique helps the organization retain its focus on the mission of the company.
It helps the company to determine ways to achieve its objectives.
It helps the company to break down the big goals into small actionable steps.
It helps the company to communicate its vision and purpose.
It helps to enable an alignment strategy for the stakeholders.
It helps to identify the company’s strengths, and weaknesses.
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3. CATWOE Analysis
CATWOE implies C: Customers A: Actors T: Transformation W: Worldview O: Owner and E: Environmental constraints
This technique is used at the beginning of any project or strategizing process to investigate and analyze the perspective of various stakeholders. It is used to identify problem areas and offer solutions.
These are the clients that benefit from the product or the service. How will the problem or the solution affect them? The first step is to identify the company’s customers, users, and stakeholders and understand how they will be benefited or what problems they encounter.
These are the employees within the company who are directly involved in the process. The next step is to know the qualities, abilities, and capabilities of the employees within the organization to get a clear picture of their impact on the system.
What will be the changes that will occur when the company will implement new procedures or solutions? It is a procedure of transforming raw materials into a final product.
How implementing any change will affect the company’s goals? It’s the bigger picture of how stakeholders and interested parties affect the organization.
These are mostly owners, entrepreneurs, or investors. Who decides the outcome of a project.? They are the decision-makers. Who is mainly responsible for the system change and how is it related to the system?
- Environmental Constraints:
What will be the limitations that will affect the procedure or the solution? These are actual environmental factors like regulations, financial constraints, ethical boundaries, etc.
A cargo transportation company wants to find new methods to advertise their client’s products on their trucks. So, we have,
- Customers: advertising, small businesses, and marketing agencies
- Actors: Drivers, crew members, and engineers
- Transformation: Advertisement on trucks is portrayed while driving.
- Worldview: Increase in income for a cargo transportation company
- Owners: Shareholders and CEO
- Environmental Constraints: Road rules and laws of the country.
- Benefits of CATWOE Analysis
It is a problem-solving technique in which a problem is looked at from six different perspectives
It is an in-depth and holistic problem-solving approach.
It brings together the viewpoints of stakeholders in a company.
The technique helps to avoid hasty judgments in solving a problem
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4. PESTLE Analysis
Pestle implies P: Political E: Economic S: Social T: Technological L: Legal E: Environmental
The pestle analytics technology is used to identify outside factors that influence the decisions in a company and how the company’s changes will influence the outside factors. It is a bird’s eye view of the scenario that surrounds the business making it one of the most useful business analytics techniques.
The following determines the forces that influence the organization:
- Political: How the government policies, regulations, initiatives, and financial aids can affect the company, and what is the company’s proposed solution to it?
- Economical: what is the economic situation and how it will influence the company? Like inflation rate, interest rate, consumer purchasing power, foreign exchange rates, growth patterns, etc.
- Social: how the present trends that relate to social situations like population, media, lifestyle, culture, and education can affect the company?
- Technology: how the rate of technological development, innovations, automation, and communication can influence the company?
- Legal: how do national employment standards and regulations influence the company?
- Environmental: what is the impact of weather, waste, and pollution on the company?
If we do a PESTLE analysis of Uber Taxi service, we need to see:
- Political factors: driver’s insurance, wage rules, bans in any countries, etc
- Economic factors: Fare Charges, convincing pay, job opportunities, easy accessibility.
- Social Factors: Quick pick up, user-friendly, better ride experience.
- Tech Factors: social media usage for promotion, Excellent mobile apps, etc
- Legal Factors: labor laws, employee safety laws, copyright laws, bans in countries, etc
- Environmental factors: traffic congestion, fuel usage, pollution, etc.
Benefits of a PESTLE Analysis
It is used first while launching the business.
It is used when the company is facing trouble with the business.
It helps to identify opportunities and challenges in the business sector.
It helps in determining strategies for launching new projects in a company.
It helps to give warnings of potential threats.
It is an outstanding technique to identify the role of the market for the product or service.
It needs only time, pen, and paper to carry out PESTLE analysis.
Most preferred foundation technique of business analysts. Problem identification and solutions and new ideas are proposed through group discussions. It is effective as it generates a large quantity as well as a large variety of ideas. Different types of Brainstorming techniques are Brainwriting, Mind-Mapping, Stepladder Technique, Visualization, Virtual Brainstorming, etc.
Benefits of Brainstorming Technique
It helps to increase productivity, creativity, and problem-solving skills
Many diverse viewpoints can be discussed and better solutions can be found through brainstorming.
It is useful when in the initial phase of a project or when the project is stuck.
It helps to think out of the box.
6. Six Thinking Hats
It is one of the extremely useful business analytics techniques where everyone in a group thinks about the same issues at the same time by putting on different hats to solve a problem or arrive at a solution. It enables the group to approach a problem from all possible angles. Created by /Edward De Bono, this method is combined with lateral thinking. Each hat with different color indicates a different type of thought process.
White Hat: Logic & Facts
- It is an objective Hat, which deals with logic, hard data, and facts.
- What does one need to find out?
- What information do we have or need or lack?
Red Hat: Emotion & Feelings
- It is an intuitive hat that deals with emotion and instinct. Here gut feelings are discussed and expressed about any issue in a group without giving any rational explanation.
- Questions like how does this make one feel?
- I don’t feel that this idea will work, or I have a gut feeling that this product will not be a success, etc.
Green Hat: Ideas & Creativity
- Here the group seeks new and innovative ways to come to a solution. Out-of-box thinking is encouraged and criticism is spared.
- Questions like what is the new way to approach this problem?
- What can be the possibilities?
- Are there any alternatives?
Yellow Hat: Benefits and Plus Points
- It is an optimistic hat that enables the group to consider the plus points of a new idea. It helps the group to stay positive when they are feeling negative about a particular problem.
- Questions like what are the benefits or positives?
- Why a particular idea is useful and what are the logical reasons for it?
Blue Hat: Process & Planning
- It is the Hat of control used by the chairperson to plan and organize the thinking process for the organization and its management.
- It asks the question, what is the problem?
- what thinking is required to solve the problem?
Black Hat: Threats & Caution
- This hat of critical judgment enables the group to identify weak points, threats, or obstacles in an idea and how to counter them.
- Questions like what can go wrong?
Benefits of the Six Thinking Hats Technique
It helps in making the meeting times more productive and collaborative
It enhances creative thinking and decision-making skills and boosts focus.
It improves communication among the team members.
Any problem can be looked at through various new perspectives.
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7. Use Case Modeling
It represents the system that is being developed by identifying the stakeholders, actors, and use cases. It provides a graphical representation of the system’s software requirements
For an E-Commerce purchase, the use case Modeling technique includes adding an item to the cart, selecting payment options, and choosing a delivery and shipping option.
Benefits of Use Case Modeling Technique
It helps to identify the requirement from the customer’s point of view.
It helps to recognize the gaps needed to be filled in by the software development teams.
It helps the software engineers to understand the product, its usage, and what needs to be accomplished.
8. User Stories
User Stories: One of the most effective business analytics techniques focuses on documenting the requirements of a new system or understanding its customers through their feedback. It is important for motivating and prioritizing certain specific areas in product or software development.
- User stories are general explanations of a specific feature of software written from the customer’s point of view.
- After reading a user story, the team can determine why and what they are building and what value they will create.
- User stories are usually a few sentences in simple language that don’t go into much detail.
- User stories are normally written on note cards for presentation.
- Details of the story come from discussions with the owners of the product.
- User stories must have main features like they should be Independent, negotiable, valuable, estimable, size appropriate, and testable.
Benefits of Using the User Stories Technique in Business Analytics
User stories maintain their focus on the user/customer:
User stories help in maintaining collaboration within the team
It enables creative solutions to reach the end goal.
It creates momentum within the team.
9. Business Process Modelling (BPM)
- It is a graphical presentation of the company’s workflow or process to identify possible improvements.
- It is one of the most popular business analytics techniques that is used to analyze and understand the gaps between the present business process and the future business process that the business is planning for.
- This technique is used during the analysis phase of a project.
- The presentation is usually done with flow charts, data-flow diagrams, etc.
- The four main stages of BPM are documenting, assessing, improving, and managing.
Benefits of Using the BPM Technique in Business Analysis
It is an easy and logical representation of how a business process will operate.
One of the best techniques in the IT industry.
It helps to make complex business analysis more straightforward.
It helps to identify the tasks that are not useful or efficient and remove them.
It helps to improve the efficiency, productivity, output, and profits of a business.
It helps to enforce best practices in the organization and standardization.
It helps to develop a culture of innovation and change if BPM is a norm within the organization
It helps to make the process transparent and beat the competition in the long run.
10. Non- Functional Requirement Analysis
One of the best and simplest business analytics techniques that do not relate to functionality but focuses on performance, security, logging, data storage, and reliability. It focuses on qualities that make the product reliable, usable, fast, and attractive.
The below-listed quality attributes are required in non-functional requirement analysis:
It describes the properties and quality attributes of the product whereas the functional requirement analysis defines what a product must do, its features, and its functions.
Benefits of Non-Functional Requirement Analysis
It helps to make the product work more efficiently and thus improves the customer’s experience.
If non-functional requirement analysis is not done properly, it can result in issues that can make developers, stakeholders, and users unsatisfied with the product.
It ensures the effectiveness of the entire project and satisfies internal business needs, the needs of users, and the market needs.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the key responsibilities of business analysts?
They use data to make strategic decisions. They determine what exactly a business needs, its problems, and how to improve its process to enhance its efficiency.
What is the demand for business analysts?
There is a much higher demand for business analysts with high-paying careers. A business analyst can earn USD 75,500 on average per year or 7-8 lakhs per year. Every business organization needs proficient business analysts to compete and strive ahead on the road to success
What are the various skills required in a business analyst?
Soft skills like communication skills, analytical mindset, logical mind, detail-oriented attitude, facilitation skills, technical skills, etc. are required in the field of business analysis.
Business leaders all over the world use business analytics techniques for purposes like product launches, high-level strategic planning, and decision-making. Thus, these techniques will help you to familiarize yourself with the bigger picture and develop strategies for success.