The Anatomy of a Pre-Analysis Cookbook

Arun Nithyanandam

This is a series of posts, if you haven’t read the earlier ones, please read it here.
The Anatomy of a Pre-Analysis Cookbook – Part 1: Overview
The Anatomy of a Pre-Analysis Cookbook – Part 2: Nuts and Bolts

Business Templates

These are the standard business language that is used for documentation, agreements, system generated emails, etc.

• What kinds of templates are usually used in conjunction with the business object?
• What sections of these are modified often? List out relevant sections here.

Master Data

This topic would, in some cases, include vendor master, supplier master, clients, personnel information, etc.

• Please list out sources or systems that are currently used to maintain master data. Examples will include vendor master, supplier master, clients, products, etc.


This is a common feature of a large project. Invariably you will end up with integrating data to various other systems within the company.

• What are the integration points for the new system to talk to? The integration includes information exchange that could go in to the new system and/or out of the new system.
• What is the company standard for directory services?
• Is there a single sign-on currently implemented within the company?

Products, IP, etc

• Do you maintain a list of products, services, or solution offerings?
• Do you maintain any knowledge or IP-related information?

Legacy Data

This section covers the already-existing data for the business objects. The data can be located in legacy systems, in various spreadsheets, documents, or even hard-copy information.

• What is the volume of the legacy information for the business object?
• What is the volume of the legacy information for associated objects?
• Is the legacy data in a mix of stages in the lifecycle? Do they include objects in creation, review, approvals, executed or published, etc?
• What is the format of the legacy data? (Examples could include Excel, PDT, etc)

Search and Reporting

• Is there a currently a report that is used by your organization?
• If yes, what are the data points being reported on?
• How frequently are these reports run?
• What is the report format? (Examples could include Excel, pivot tables, etc.)

Next week on these pages : The Anatomy of a Pre-Analysis Cookbook – Part 3: Take aways

About the Author

arun_nith_blog.jpgArun Nithyanandam is a Strategy and Management Consultant based in Silicon Valley. Arun has managed multiple multi-million dollar IT projects in US and Europe across verticals. His current focus areas are Enterprise Contract Management Systems (deploying Nextance proposal-to-revenue and source-to-savings solutions to help companies improve financial performance and lower risk) and Enterprise Content Management Systems. Arun works with CIGNEX Technologies, a provider of Open Source based enterprise content management solutions.

During his spare time (if any) Arun enjoys hiking and reading.

Arun is currently working on a book (co-authored with Bill Sherman) code named “Managing Multi-million dollar projects” to be published in 2008.

For the collection of all Arun’s articles, please visit Squidoo Lens Arun Says

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