Standard method for communication and documentation for business analysts, designers and developers

by Michael Lai   Last Updated September 11, 2019 02:16 AM - source

I have been working on a personal project to standardize the way that business analysts, designers and developers communicate in projects about the problems and solutions that they have to solve. Even though UX Design has been talked about striking a viable balance between Business, Technology and People (feel free to insert your favourite Venn diagram here), I have not found there to be a common way for analysts, designers and developers to share information.

We don't need to go too much into details about how UX Designers capture information, but suffice to say that we produce more artefacts than the business analysts and software developers combined. So I want to highlight some of the things that business analysts and developers have been using as background to why I am asking this question.

Software Developers

Most of the front end software application design and development seems to be trending towards pre-built development frameworks or other javascript libraries for the web, compared to some of the back end or enterprise application design that uses a mixture of functional (C, C++) and object-oriented (Java, C#) programming languages.

Object oriented or object based programming languages tries to model real world entities so that it can replicate the properties and behaviour digitally. This is no different from mathematics trying to model real world scenarios to solve problems. Although not confined to object oriented languages only, UML (Unified Modelling Language) is a standard way of capturing information in a standard way to model the problem space and help develop a programming solution.

Interestingly, there is a previous question about the Choice of Programming Language and UX as well, but dealing with something slightly different: Choice of Programming Languages and UX

Business Analysts

Traditionally the Business Process Modelling Notation (BPMN) has been used to specify business processes in a business process model. But as we know, the current business environment is largely trending towards a user experience driven market and therefore many products and services are focusing largely on the 'people' element, and this is also reflected by how the latest version of the BPMN language (2.0) has been used.

Given that there are already conventions in object oriented programming like UML and BPMN in business analysis, why is it that there isn't a standardized way for business analysts, designers and developers to communicate the problem and solution that they are working on? Or are there actually examples of UML, BPMN or some other convention that has been used successfully?

Question - Is there a standard that is used by analysts, designers and developers?

I haven't come across something like this, and the reason why I think this is the case is a combination of:

  1. There isn't really a 'standard' in UX Design like there is for BAs or devs
  2. There is no benefit of maintaining a single standard compared to managing three different standards (as there isn't a suitable solution that fits all three), and you end up dealing with four instead of one.
  3. There is too much difference between the disciplines to warrant a single standard
  4. No one has attempted it, or no successful attempts have been made

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