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T-SQL Tuesday: Giving the Business what they really want


This month’s T-SQL Tuesday is a topic that I hold near and dear.  It’s something that happens all the time.  Someone in a leadership or decision making capacity asks the IT group to solve a problem and that business user thinks that they know how to solve it.  Unfortunately, they are asking for the moon, and the solution either doesn’t make fiscal, technological, or just plain logical sense.

So, how does the person with the technology know how get the business a solution that will truly solve their business issue?  After many missteps and wasted capitol expenses we implemented a pretty straight forward process to translate business requests into technology solutions. 

We use a template for a Business Requirements Document that walks business groups through defining the business issue, and what they would like the desired end result to look like.  This template asks questions about physical processes, processes within software, and decision making points within the process and helps define what parts should be solved with technology.  Along with the BRD, we use theory of constraints to ensure that the BRD meets the root cause of the issue. 

Once the business team has completed the BRD, and their TOC work it is usually pretty apparent if the issue they are trying to solve requires a technology solution.  Only then does IT become involved. 

With the BRD, and TOC documents in hand it is left to the IT group to identify the proper technology for the issue.  IT then reports back to the business team with costs, timelines, and if possible alternate solutions.  Once everyone agrees and money and time has been allocated to the project it is scheduled and the real work begins.

I’ll be honest, this doesn’t always lead to the perfect solution that everyone is happy with, but more often than not it does help us solve business problems more correctly the first time and all stakeholders involved are able to feel like their input was taken into account.

  1. December 15, 2010 at 6:51 am

    I’m a big process fan. It sounds like you’ve got a pretty good process going. I’m trying to bring more of that into the team I’m on. I don’t have a ton of influence but I do what I can.

    I have seem some evidence that I’ve had a bit of success

  1. January 10, 2011 at 10:03 am

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