Business analysis involves determining how an organization functions and identifying its capabilities, and then recommending solutions that will enable the organization to reach its goals. The BABOK(R) Guide defines the field of business analysis and serves as a benchmark for both business analysis practitioners and the organizations using their services.A business analyst is responsible for understanding an organization and its needs, and identifying problems and solutions. They then determine the changes that are necessary for the organization to achieve its goals and objectives.As a business analyst, there are several key competencies that are important to understand and develop. These are analytical thinking and problem solving, appropriate behavioral characteristics, business and software knowledge, and communication and interaction skills.Analytical thinking and problem solving include creative thinking, decision making, learning, problem solving, and systems thinking. Each of these competencies can assist business analysts in helping clients to solve underlying problems as efficiently and effectively as possible.A business analysis approach defines how and when business analysis tasks will be performed, and what deliverables they will produce. It must take organizational process requirements and the objectives of an initiative into account, and meet agreed standards.Inputs for planning a business analysis approach include the business needs an initiative is designed to address, expert judgment, and organizational process assets. A business analysis approach may be plan-driven, change-driven, or a combination. The type of approach chosen is influenced by elements of the project.Stakeholder analysis is the process of identifying all stakeholders in a project or initiative, as well as their roles, authority levels, influence, and attitudes. The inputs of a stakeholder analysis include the business need an initiative is designed to address, enterprise architecture, and organizational process assets.Specific stakeholders can assist in the stakeholder analysis process by identifying and evaluating additional stakeholders.A business analysis plan should identify required business analysis activities and results, the amount of work needed to complete the activities, and the management tools required to monitor business analysis activities.A business analyst uses four inputs when developing a business analysis plan - the chosen business analysis approach, business analysis performance assessment, organizational process assets, and the stakeholder list, roles, and responsibilities.One of the primary responsibilities of the business analyst is to effect good communication with and among key stakeholders by creating a business analysis communication plan. The four inputs to this plan include the business analysis approach, business analysis plans, organizational process assets, and stakeholder list, roles, and responsibilities.A business analyst considers five elements when creating a business analysis communication plan. These include geography, culture, project type, communication frequency, and communications formality.The plan requirements management process describes the process that will be used to approve requirements for implementation. It is also used to assess the need for requirements traceability. Inputs of the plan requirements management process include the business analysis approach, a business analysis plan, and organizational process assets.The plan requirements management process includes several elements to consider. These include a repository, traceability, requirements attributes, a requirement prioritization process plan, change management considerations, and the need for tailoring of the process.