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History of Business Analysis

Over the last few decades, Business Analysis has developed extensively. Business Analysts have established themselves in organisations due to advancements in technology and thus in computing. Businesses have only really used IT systems since the 1980s, as before this time computing was too expensive and so they were only used by institutions like universities and the government. In addition, they were not very efficient, for example storing data was difficult due to the large amount of space it consumed.


Yet, in the 1980s huge improvements were made in the world of IT. Data storage was enhanced and graphical user interfaces were created, which caused a boom in computing technology. However, the difference in expertise between business managers and IT technicians began to show as when communicating they could not understand what each other were saying - thus Business Analysis was devised.


To begin with, Business Analysts were known as Systems Analysts who, as well as their normal duties, focused on engineering software. This was not practical or ideal due to their lack of business operations understanding, therefore the Business Analyst role has experienced much development over the last two decades in accordance with technological advancements. Primarily, it was clear that IT solutions needed to be compelled by business requirements, business changes needed to be reflected in IT, and IT demands needed definition. These components are what Business Analysis comprises of today.


Business Analysis has gained significance because businesses often turn to technological solutions to problems, thus Business Analysts are designed to handle this. Business Analysts are now also important at the initiation stage of a project, as they can define business requirements and analyse the problems with current processes and the possible project impact.


Overall, Business Analysis incorporates knowledge of business elements and understanding of IT systems that is useful in determining how they can benefit each other. In turn, this integration gives businesses a competitive edge and enables progression to take place quicker.