What Is Business Process Analysis? (With How-to Guide)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated October 26, 2022

Published May 14, 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

If you want to improve your business processes, it's beneficial to learn about business process analysis (BPA). This analysis identifies a company's internal systems to improve its efficiency and productivity. By knowing more about BPA, you can increase your revenue and income. In this article, we discuss the definition of BPA, provide you with a list of BPA methodologies, explore how to use BPA, and examine several career options for those who want to work in this field.

What is business process analysis?

Business process analysis, otherwise called BPA, refers to the method organizations use to review and improve internal processes, along with their efficiency and effectiveness. When companies can streamline processes to coincide with their company objectives, they can benefit from more productivity and revenue. BPA also refers to larger frameworks, called business process management, which seek to manage and optimize company performance. Here's a list of the different methodologies associated with BPA:

Gap analysis

A gap analysis, otherwise called a needs analysis, refers to a method that compares the differences between an organization's existing performance and its expected performance. A gap analysis allows companies to identify their current processes and operations to discover when to make changes within the company. Project managers and IT professionals typically use gap analysis to help improve performance levels. For example, if professionals introduce new products that don't meet sales needs or expectations, professionals can use a gap analysis to determine the reasons for underperformance.

Root cause analysis

Root cause analysis (RCA) refers to the process of identifying the primary reasons for obstacles, along with potential solutions for those obstacles. RCA helps solve underlying issues rather than treat just treating the symptoms of those issues. This allows companies to remove the root cause of issues and subsequently minimize the chance of those issues occurring again. This is beneficial because it allows companies to explore issues in -depth rather than review superficial causes and outcomes. As a result, RCA provides companies with long-term benefits and solutions.

Value-added analysis

A value-added analysis is a BPA method that helps companies identify issues within their processes. This analysis helps teams review individual processes to identify the steps involved that provide those processes with increased value. They can then separate those steps that add value from the ones that don't provide increased value. This is a client-focused analysis and seeks to change the product or service to meet the customers' preferences. Once a team identifies the most valuable steps in their processes it, they can remove the ones that don't provide value and replace them with others that do.

Experience examination analysis

This type of BPA method gathers process knowledge from senior and long-term employees within a company. The expertise of these individuals provides a BPA initiative with practical knowledge to a BPA initiative based on their experience at the organization, helping to fill in any gaps of information gaps that may exist if proposed processes rely on short-term or theoretical data. This type of analysis can help you determine how a new procedure or policy would fit in with current company practices and culture.

Observational analysis

Observational analysis gathers insights through observing a business process in real-time. As an observer, it can be easier to collect information and discover steps that others may overlook or undervalue. There are two ways in which you can observe a process: actively and passively. Active observation means that you engage with the subjects by asking questions and participating in the actual process. Passive observation means you don't engage or interact with the process at all.

How business process analysis works in five5 steps

Here's a step-by-step guide for those who want to use BPA:

1. Define your business goals

To define your business goals, you may want to think about what your team or organization plans to accomplish, then identify the analysis method that can help you reach or assess those goals. It's beneficial to help ensure that the goals you establish are comprehensive and realistic, with details about steps and resources. You can determine performance benchmarks and use tools to measure your progress.

2. Define the processes for analysis

Once you understand your goals and what you want to achieve, you can then identify the processes to analyze. You may want to begin with small processing matters or simple areas where the organization is underperforming. This allows you to become accustomed to the analysis method of your choice before adapting it to larger-scale issues, if necessary.

3. Collect relevant data

To help ensure you're collecting relevant data, you can obtain the help of business analysis practitioners. You may also confer with relevant stakeholders;, because they may possess vital information to help you identify problems and performance issues. The more useful information you collect, the better equipped you are to address your organization's challenges.

4. Make a layout of the process

To plan for the analysis process, use business process mapping. This is a management and planning tool that allows you to create visual representations of a process. There are many ways to in which you can achieve this, such as using a bar graph or flowchart. The visual medium that you choose ultimately depends on the specific process you are analyzing and how you can best present the information in a way that's, so it's easy to understand.

5. Conduct a process analysis

Depending on the type of analysis type you use, you may begin to gather details on things like high-value activities, customer interactions and information exchanges. As the analysis continues, look for process bottlenecks, delays and inefficient production components. Once you have collected sufficient results, you can then determine how to best improve on the most critical business areas.

Who conducts business process analysis?

Here's a list of potential careers for those who want to work with business analysis:

1. Business analyst

National average salary: $71,199 per year

Primary duties: These are professionals who seek to understand how each area of an organization operates, so they can implement improvement strategies. They also want to promote new processes that are cost-effective and self-sustaining. A business analyst often works very closely with corporate stakeholders to identify business goals and best practices that fit their specific company framework. These professionals also provide companies with budgeting and for their clients and companies. They report data and analysis to other professionals and to their supervisors. They also offer recommendations based on the data collected.

Related: Business Analyst vs. Business Systems Analyst: Differences and Similarities

2. Systems analyst

National average salary: $63,279 per year

Primary duties: Systems analysts examine the systems of companies and monitor those systems to determine when they require upgrades or maintenance. These professionals also help design new computer systems and frameworks and troubleshoot, along with troubleshooting technical issues in existing systems. In addition, they. They collaborate with other IT professionals to obtain information that helps them resolve obstacles. Systems analysts also assess reviews of company systems and provide regular training sessions to other professionals to help ensure that all members of the company understand the computer systems.

Related: How to Get Into IT (With Tips to Build Your IT Career)

3. Process analyst

National average salary: $72,540 per year

Primary duties: Process analysts are consultants who collect and document project requirements for businesses. These professionals also focus on process improvement, along with automation efforts. They facilitate processes that improve workflow and collaborate with other professionals to enhance the company's competitiveness of the company within their industry. Process analysts review data and trends to help ensure that process outputs achieve the desired results. These professionals also conduct maturity assessments to determine potential improvements or concerns.

Related: 10 Skills Business Analysts Need for Workplace Success

4. Project manager

National average salary: $75,428 per year

Primary duties: Project managers act as team leaders in projects. They help with both the planning and development of project ideas. These professionals also work with stakeholders to determine their roles and expectations. They monitor the progress and budgets of projects and help team members fulfil deadlines. When obstacles arise, project managers provide solutions for those issues that arise and manage project budgets. They also promote collaboration between team members and conduct regular research to help ensure that team members consistently use the best strategies and innovation.

Related: Project Manager vs. Project Coordinator: What Makes Them Different?

5. Requirements engineer

National average salary: $84,566 per year

Primary duties: Requirements engineers work with the analysis and documentation of new software projects. These professionals also provide management and coordination services for these software projects and identify the specific demands of projects. This typically requires collaboration between team members and developers. Requirements engineers also maintain strong notes and documents for future use and to help ensure the successful completion of projects.

Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries and quoted websites at time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organization and a candidate's experience, academic background, and location.

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