Spotlight on Red Cedar Business Analysts: Leading our Collaborative Community

Three businesspeople with laptops and notebooks gathered around a table

Here at Red Cedar Solutions Group, our company culture plays a big part in how we work. Throughout the entire process of software design and development, we believe that a culture of collaboration is vital to ensure that we can deliver the best possible product. More than just being a part of good design practices, collaboration leads to a sense of community that flourishes in our office.

This collaborative effort starts with our business analysts. As the liaison between our clients, developers, and design team, business analysts create bridges of communication to all participants as we go through the design and development processes. At the very start of this journey, business analysts join designers to form the Discovery and Design team. Together, they work with the client to gather requirements and get a sense of what the client wants to achieve through a software solution. Instead of simply writing this up into a requirements document for the developers to figure out, the design, business analysis and development teams collaborate to identify potential problems and produce the best design and development solution.

Business analysts at RCSG take an active role in each part of the design and development processes. Instead of taking a backseat once a contract is negotiated, they are actively engaged in the discovery and design work up front and then again during testing to ensure that the product developed meets the client’s needs. Testing gives them first-hand experience in the role of the end user to understand how the solution works and identify how it can be improved. They gain valuable insight into how users will interact with the product comprehensively in ways that even the client might not have anticipated. Testing also gives business analysts a unique perspective on how each stakeholder is thinking about the solution and where there may be miscommunication across teams. They can then effectively communicate how and why an aspect of the project might need to be changed on the fly.

With our small company atmosphere, it is easy to get a deep sense of each team member’s strengths and weaknesses to understand how best to delegate tasks. Instead of only dealing with a leader from each team, business analysts have direct access to each team member, giving them an in-depth understanding of how the project is progressing and what work remains to be done.

We aim to create a transparent workspace, both literally with our open office layout and figuratively with fluid communication. With the majority of people working in the office, it is easy to clearly communicate in person instead of relying on phone or email where ideas might not be fully understood. It is easy to grab a conference room and hammer out details or questions between teams without having to wait for a bi-weekly conference call. The ability of our teams to collaborate instantly supports our agile development process and we can avoid the headache of having to redo work because of miscommunication.

As the experts of negotiating the interests of all the different stakeholders, from the client to the design team to the developers, business analysts take the lead in creating the culture of collaboration here at RCSG.