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Agile Extension to the BABOK Guide: The Making of an Extension   

By Paul Stapleton, Standards and Publications Manager, IIBA   
The Agile Extension to the BABOK® Guide is a resource for business analysts, those who are practicing business analysis, as well as product owners, business owners and corporations who are working in an agile environment. The Agile Extension to the BABOK® Guide has been developed by International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA) in collaboration with the Agile Alliance and is aligned with A Guide to the Business Analysis Body of Knowledge® (BABOK® Guide). It provides business analysts with the tools and techniques they need to be effective on agile teams. The Agile Extension to the BABOK® Guide provides seven key guidelines for the practice of business analysis within an agile environment. These guidelines are supported by a Discovery Framework and a Delivery Framework that articulate specific techniques that have proven to be successful for agile teams in the delivery of value.
The Agile Extension: Why?
agileThe continued proliferation and evolution of agile approaches has generated a modulation in the practice of business analysis. In 2009 IIBA® recognized a need to create an extension to the BABOK® Guide that would provide business analysts working on agile teams with a set of tools and techniques to help guide and advance their efforts. The Agile Extension is a reference to both business analysts and those interested in the practice of business analysis as they seek to add value to agile teams.
The Agile Extension to the BABOK® Guide is intended to provide business analysis practitioners with:
  • an introduction to agile practices for business analysis,
  • an overview of business analysis techniques for agile practitioners,
  • a set of definitions of typical working practices used by business analysts working on agile projects, and
  • an overview of the new and changed roles, skills, and competencies for business analysis.
The Agile Extension: How?
With the strategic need for an Agile Extension to the BABOK® Guide identified and defined, IIBA reached out to leading business analysts practicing in agile environments. A pioneering group of these individuals gathered at the Agile 2010 Conference and met in an Open Space event. During this facilitated session the team brainstormed topics that could be in the Agile Extension and made linkages between the topics that were used to create the initial outline.
For the next year, the team, led by David Morris and Dennis Stevens, worked on creating an annotated outline and an initial draft of the first chapter. Once this milestone was met, Shane Hastie led the team through the development of the content for the initial draft. The team was comprised of a geographically and technically diverse group of experts who collaborated remotely using the IIBA wiki as their primary collaboration tool.
Progress was slow. Although dedicated, the challenges of remote collaboration impacted the progress the team was able to make. At the Agile 2011 conference, the team reconvened for a two day session funded by both IIBA and Agile Alliance. A professional facilitator assisted the team to organize the two days in order to provide maximum value for all stakeholders. This session in August 2011 redefined the structure for the Extension, and developed a great deal of the content that we see today.
The 2011 Closers
From left to right: Dennis Stevens, Dave Cook, Luiz Claudio Parzianello, Brian Hemker, Susan Block, Kevin Brennan, Carol Scalice, Ben Gaddis (Faciliator), Ellen Gottesdiener, and Shane Hastie.
A draft of the Agile Extension to the BABOK® Guide was put forth for public review in January 2012. The public review garnered over 1000 points of feedback, which the team addressed over the next year. A final iteration of the document was submitted to the writing team for a consensus vote and in early 2013 the team voted to publish the Extension.
The core writing team for the Agile Extension to the BABOK® Guide included

• Kevin Brennan • Shane Hastie
• Luiz Claudio 
• Susan Block • Brian Hemker • Carol Scalice
• David C. Cook • Marsha Hughes
• Paul Stapleton, 
• Peter Gordon • Chris Matts • Dennis Stevens
• Steve Erlank  • Ali Mazer
• Pascal Van 
• Ellen Gottesdiener • David Morris  
The Agile Extension: Now
The time has finally come!
The Agile Extension to the BABOK® Guide is going to available in July 2013.
As a membership benefit, IIBA members can download a complimentary copy of the Agile Extension PDF for their own personal and professional use.
The Agile Extension to the BABOK® Guide will also be available to purchase from your favourite book retailers, in July 2013.