Business Analyst vs. Product Owner

What is a Business Analyst?

A person who is hired by a company to analyze the business of that company and to keep it in check that the business is running smoothly and efficiently. A business analyst may sound like a simple job but it is one of those jobs where it covers the entire aspect of a company which it analyses. Therefore, a business analyst is called more than just an analyst; business architect, business systems analyst, enterprise analyst, management consultant, process analyst, product manager, product owner, requirements engineer and systems analyst.

Product owner over here mentioned is true to be same as business analysts but it differs from them in certain aspects which we will discuss further in this article. 

Difference

A Product Owner’s duties, while not completely revolutionary, are generally an amalgamation of multiples roles such as 

- Business representative, 

- Business analyst and 

- Project manager. 

The purpose for bringing these roles into a single role is to provide a level of responsibility or you may call it accountability. Now once you have formulated this role you need to look for the people who may be the best candidates for it. It depends on the candidates whether they have the right potential to develop the skills required or not.

When functioning with a Product Owner as well as an agile Business Analyst, they tend to focus on dealing with the problem from a complete viewpoint. The Product Owner provides a user focus while the agile Business Analyst provides a system focus. So while the Product Owner is checking out what the user wants and the best way to provide business value, the agile Business Analyst is classifying edge-cases, error conditions, dependencies and impacts to other areas of the system and other systems. A good agile Business Analyst has a profound understanding of the current functionality of the system and is capable to expect positive and negative impacts to other areas of the organization.

Final Thoughts

· An agile Business Analyst may challenge the Product Owner or Product Manager to define the situation at the office, what are the recent problems that are related to the business and how to deal with all these issues at hand? 

· There is no doubt an agile Business Analyst can provide a great deal of value; however, Product Owner exclusively retains the rights to two responsibilities in order to maintain accountability: accepting stories and managing priorities.