Allan Kelly's Essential Agile for Business Analysts

Topics covered at AGILE-BA-01-03
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Are you an experienced Business Analyst? Would you like to learn what agile software development is? What the common terms and practices are and how agile could benefit your project? If you'd like to gain a clear understanding of the Business Analyst's role in agile teams, how agile compares to traditional methods and what tools are available to you, then join this course with Allan Kelly!

This course will cover the main agile methods Scrum and XP, and the relationship of Agile to Lean. Alan will explain common terms and practices in agile, how agile software projects and teams are organised and the roles on these teams. We'll then learn about the essential role of Business Analysis on agile projects and how you, as a Business Analyst can apply agile practices to help accelerate delivery, increase business value and ensure teams do the right thing.

Learn how to:

  • Describe the main Agile methods: Scrum and XP, plus the relationship of Agile to Lean
  • Use effective tools and practices for Business Analysts on Agile Teams.
  • Apply Agile practices to help accelerate delivery and increase business value on an Agile project.
  • Add value to an Agile Team and understand how Agile Teams are organised
  • Become an effective Business Analyst on an Agile Team

What the community says

"Good mix of presentation and exercises. A lot of value I found came out of seeing how other organisations work. "

November 2014 Attendee on 2nd Dec 2014

"Allan is a very good teacher and was able to keep me interested in what he was teaching. If I were to do further courses, I would definitely look up any that Allan teaches. Allan is friendly and approachable."

Kara Hopkins, BSkyB on 19th Mar 2014

"I would like to thank Alan, it's really an interesting, interactive course."

Nourah Al-Romaihi, Riyad Bank on 19th Mar 2014

About the Author

Allan Kelly

Allan is a founding consultant with Software Strategy, working with companies to implement and deepen Agile methods, and specialises in aligning company strategy to products and processes.

Agile & Scrum Overview

  • What is Agile software development?
  • Review of Scrum and Extreme Programming (XP) methods
  • The relationship between Agile, Scrum and other methods
  • Benefits of Agile and Scrum
  • Empirical processes control
  • Agile Manifesto: values and principles
  • Self-organizing teams

Sprints and Iterations

  • Sprint/Iteration Cycle
  • Planning
  • Sprint Backlog
  • Commitment
  • Daily Scrum
  • Sprint Reviews
  • Retrospectives
  • Demonstrations
  • Release
  • Velocity
  • Sprint Goal
  • Abnormal Termination

Technical Practices

  • Test Driven Development (TDD)
  • Acceptance Test Driven Development (ATDD)
  • Refactoring
  • Continuous integration
  • Simplicity
  • Code Reviews and Pair Programming
  • Work breakdown
  • Estimation with Planning Poker

Management Practices

  • Impediment removal
  • Vertical teams
  • Quality
  • Risk management
  • Burn-down, burn-up and cumulative flow charts
  • Visibility
  • Definition of Done
  • Kaizen continuous improvement


  • Product Owner role
  • Customer involvement
  • User Stories: Epics, Features and Tasks
  • Story breakdown and estimation
  • Product Backlog
  • Prioritization
  • Roadmaps and Release plans


  • Scrum Master
  • Product Owner, Customer and Business Analyst
  • Team
  • Developers and Testers
  • Stakeholders

How Agile Affects Business Analysis

  • Short iterations and just-in-time analysis
  • TDD and model driven analysis
  • Communication over documentation
  • Up-front QA with BA
  • Business value over requirements or features

Tools for Agile Business Analysis

  • User Stories and INVEST
  • User stories as placeholders
  • Prioritisation: MOSCOW rules and Absolute - prioritisation
  • Managing backlogs
  • Assigning business value
  • Real options based investment

Other items

  • The role of documentation
  • Overview of Kanban software development method
  • Importance of quality
  • ScrumBut and The Nokia Test The Learning Organization


If you are a Business Analyst (or you are responsible for Business Analysis or requirement gathering on a software team), and you want to learn the practices and skills required to work on an Agile Team, this Essential Agile for Business Analysts course is for you!


To benefit from this Essential Agile for Business Analysts course, you'll need several years experience in Requirements Gathering and Business Analysis on software development projects, prior to attending. Prior Agile experience is not necessary.