How data modelling should form part of the BA's toolkit

Data modelling is often seen as a technical activity and some would argue outside the BA's responsibility. However, data models that are not technical in nature can be used to validate and explore the requirements. Ultimately, it can allow us to identify important questions that need to be asked or assumptions that need to be tested that are not obvious when using other functional models.
  • How does data modelling support requirements?
  • What % of BA's handle Data Modelling?
  • How do you suggest that one starts data modelling?
  • With data architects in short supply, surely data modelling is a must have skill for BAs to ensure requirements can be precise?
  • Can someone do a beginners guide to Data Modelling?
  • What is the best way to understand data modelling?
  • How do you suggest that one starts data modelling?
  • When does data modelling coming into play?
  • Practical ways to sharpen my data modelling skills?
  • Will you be demonstrating
  • I use data modelling for listing attributes required on entities but I don't care about UIDS, foreign keys, etc. do you?
  • Does the data dictionary come first or after the model is organised?
  • What exactly do we mean by non-technical data modelling and would a BA without a technology background be able to do that?
  • What tools are most used by BA's for data modeling?
  • What are ways of making quick models?
  • Which tools do you recommend for data modelling?
  • Is there any software to aid in the development of data modeling?
  • What is your favorite Data Modelling Software?
  • To what extent do you think BA's should utilise modelling standards such as BPMN, UML, etc?
  • What role does a DBA then have in organisation?


John Gubbins

John is an expert in Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence with over 15 years experience working in a variety of project roles across both management and delivery in all phases of the development lifecycle. He has earned a reputation for successfully designing and implementing large scale solutions as an architect, project leader, mentor and successful facilitator.

John excels in the most difficult situations and delights in the solving of technical problems earning trust as a leader working across multiple teams. He has successfully designed, implemented and consulted on Data Warehouse and Business Intelligence solutions for major corporate organisations in New Zealand, Australia and the UK. He brings indepth end to end expertise.

John recognises that the continuing success of a BI solution requires vision and a strategy and effective communication across departmental hierarchies. He fosters teamwork, and is keen to share his knowledge and experience to foster success of any DW/BI implementation.

He has delivered numerous DW and BI training courses and has considerable experience in mentoring staff. Additionally, John has presented at several public seminars discussing Data Warehousing principles.

Ellan Young

An experienced information technology professional with over 25 years of experience in analysing, implementing and managing process and technology solutions for organisations. Ellan has held positions of responsibility from team leader to group manager. She is valued for her mentoring ability and excels in managing communications between business management and technical implementation groups. Ellan conducts reviews of BA processes as well as trains / coaches other BAs. She has conducted workshops and presented at various conferences on different business analysis related topics, e.g. BA anti-patterns, the BA in an Agile world, stakeholder communications, etc. Ellan also was a contributing writer to the ICAgile BA & Value Management certification track and a contributor to the IIBA BABOK v3 General Techniques and Agile Perspective.

Specialties: Team leadership, coaching, mentoring, facilitation Value management, business analysis, workflow process analysis IT Infrastructure Support and Operations Management

Nick De Voil

Nick has been doing data modeling for 30 years. He is a certified management consultant and director of De Voil Consulting, a company which helps organisations to blend outstanding customer experience with efficient business processes. He was recently awarded the MSc in Human Computer Interaction. Nick was the contributor to the 2013 book “Buisness Analysis and Leadership.” Since 2011 has been associated with Business Analyst Mentor, where he enjoys helping BAs develop their careers. Nick is the member experience director of IIBA UK and hads presented several times at the business analyst conference Europe and other IIBA UK events.

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