BA Blitz Was A Blast - Help Yourself And Help Your Community

Something cool happened for business analysts, for a non-profit organization and for IIBA on December 7th!

IIBA Ottawa-Outaouais Chapter (IIBA O-O) just ran its first-ever BA hackathon, called BA Blitz

The goal of BA Blitz was to bring together a group of BAs from the Ottawa region to do some free business analysis work for a non-profit organization.  The Chapter partnered with Women's Economic Council (WEC), a Canadian non-profit organization with a focus on women-centered community economic development, factoring in elements such as people, employment, inclusion, and sustainability. Through a collaborative and transparent process, IIBA O-O worked with WEC to set up the event and the case study, which became the scope of the business analysis work at the hackathon.

With teamwork and collaboration, the BA teams "hacked" at three typical business challenges faced by non-profits: funding, human resource management, and succession planning. There was a lot of elicitation, modeling, and creative thinking happening throughout the day, allowing BAs at varying skill levels to learn a lot from each other. The participants used many BA tasks and techniques, including brainstorming, functional decomposition, organization modeling, interviews, prioritization, current state analysis, plan BA approach, strategic alignment matrix, expert model (HRM), customer value proposition canvas, business model canvas, and gap analysis, to name a few. It was inspiring to see participants demonstrating customer empathy and mindfulness when interviewing the WEC representatives, when performing business analysis, and when coming up with customer-centric solutions.

The result was that each team developed a set of recommendations for WEC to address their three business challenges. We are so proud of the local BAs who demonstrated the incredible potential of using business analysis skills and knowledge for social good.

But our work is not quite done yet. We plan to circle back with WEC to assess the outcomes from executing the recommendations.  And stay tuned - a Chapter BA Hackathon Playbook is in the works.  We would love to see other Chapters run their own hackathons for non-profit organizations, and we look forward to hearing about everyone's lessons learned!