Why does the Business Analyst need a Communications Plan?

Why does the Business Analyst need a Communications Plan?
"What did you do at the office today, dear?" "Well, I talked some, and then I wrote some…" Because communication is such an integral part and devours a huge chunk of a business analyst's time, it's a very good idea to plan a careful communication strategy for each project.

Consider the various ways you'll communicate with the stakeholders, project team, upstream and downstream departments, individuals, and process owners. Good communication begins by understanding the needs of the person you're speaking with or writing to. For example, when it's time to consult your stakeholders, it's important to understand their individual roles and accountabilities, as well as the various influencers within the stakeholder community. Take time to familiarize yourself with the unique communication styles of the people you need to talk to, along with their preferred communication modes—for example, are they "email people" or "phone people"? What technologies are available and preferred? Skype? IM? Videoconferencing? And so on.

To make your communications as efficient and effective as possible, find out which styles and modes present the communication channels with greatest bandwidth for sharing information. With these factors in mind, create your communication plan and share it with your team. Once you have a plan, be sure to follow through on what you say you'll do. And don't forget to update the plan as needed, to accommodate any changes in the project team or deliverables.











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