Before we go on to explain the BABOK Guide, let’s look at the meaning Body of knowledge.
A body of knowledge or BOK) is the complete set of concepts, terms, and activities that are used by members of a discipline to guide their practice or work. The idea that the BABOK is a methodology is a common misconception.
A methodology is a system of methods and principles for doing something. A framework, on the other hand, is a basic structure underlying a system or concept.
BABOK Guide is a framework that describes the business analysis tasks that must be put in place before recommending a solution that will deliver value to the stakeholders of an organization. Each business analysis task may vary in form, order, or importance for individual business analysts or for various initiatives.
From the above, it is evident that the BABOK is a framework upon which organizations can build methodologies, policies, procedures, tools, and techniques to practice business analysis.
The Business Analysis Body of Knowledge (BABOK® Guide) is a globally recognized standard on which the business analysis practice is based. It recognizes and reflects the fact that business analysis is continually evolving and is practiced in a wide variety of forms and contexts. Thereby, defining the skills and knowledge a professional should demonstrate. The Business Analysis Body of Knowledge (BABOK® Guide) reflects the collective knowledge of the business analysis community and presents the most widely accepted business analysis practices BABOK Guide includes the following:
Business Analysis Key Concepts: define important terms needed to understand the content, concepts, and ideas within the BABOK®
Knowledge Areas: represent the main content of BABOK Guide and contain the business analysis tasks that are used to perform business analysis.
Underlying Competencies: describe the behaviors, characteristics, knowledge, and personal qualities that support the effective practice of business analysis
Techniques: describe 50 of the most common techniques business analysts practice.
Perspectives: describe the 5 various views a business analyst can work to better perform the business analysis tasks. These 5 various views are Agile, Business Intelligence, Information Technology, Business Architecture, and Business Process Management.
BABOK Guide organizes the business analysis tasks within the 6 knowledge areas. Each task describes the typical knowledge, skills, and techniques that a BA needs to be able to work in an efficient manner. The knowledge areas organize the tasks in a logical way. It does not specify any process, methodology or the order in which they must follow.