Business Analyst Glossary of Terms

Business Process Management (BPM)

A field of management focused on aligning organizations with the wants and needs of customers (internal or external). It is a gestalt view of management that promotes business effectiveness and efficiency while striving for innovation, flexibility, and integration with technology. Business process management attempts to improve processes continuously.

Business Requirement Specifications (BRS)

A document that contains the basic requirements of customer that are to be developed as software project cost schedule target dates.


Applications in the R/3 System are combinations of components. The components are held in a hierarchy, which can be displayed in the R/3 Reference Model, that describes the functional scope of the applications in a top-down fashion. The number of components and the number of levels an application has in the hierarchical structure depend on its functional scope.

Enterprise Area

Part of a business area. An enterprise area is a grouping of organization units that have closely linked work and contribute to discrete business processes. The Enterprise Area is the first level of the
Process Flow View within the Business Navigator. Examples are Procurement, Logistics, Organization and Human Resources, and External Accounting. Also called Enterprise process area.

Event-controlled process chain (EPC)

A graphical display form used in the R/3 Reference Model to describe in detail the logical sequence of business functions and events carried out by the R/3 System. The EPC is the fourth level of the model and
may be accessed by drilldown from the scenarios and processes.


An acronym for “Question, Data set, Analysis, and Report / Revision”, which are the four primary steps to any business analysis.

Requirements Analysis

A document that determines the needs or conditions to meet for a new or altered product, taking account of the possibly conflicting requirements of the various stakeholders, such as beneficiaries or users.

Software Requirement Specification (SRS)

A document detailing the functionality, interfaces, performance, attributes, and design constraints of a project.


An acronym for a problem-solving strategy that “States the problem, Defines the Tools, Algorithm (procedure), Implement, and Revise,” which was developed by Andy Harris at IUPUI’s Computer Science department. These are are general steps that can be used to theoretically solve any problem.

Structured Analysis (SA) / Structured Design (SD)

Methods for analyzing and converting business requirements into specifications and ultimately, computer programs, hardware configurations and related manual procedures.

Zero One or Infinity (ZOI)

A rule is a rule of thumb in software code suggesting that arbitrary limits on the number of instances of a particular entity should not be allowed. Specifically, that an entity should either be forbidden entirely (zero), should be allowed once (one), or any number (infinity) should be allowed. Here are some examples of the zero or infinity rule.

The Zero One or Infinity (ZOI) Rule

I learned something yesterday that I wanted to share really quick: there is no two in programming, but this can apply to troubleshooting and database design too.

What this means is that there are units that either aren’t allowed to exist, are allowed (or supposed) to exist only once, and those that are allowed to have no limit – but there is no other kind, no other in between those types.

For example, in Excel there can only be one name for a cell or range, but a near infinite amount of cells.  In Access there can only be one primary key, but a near infinite amount of entries.  In HTML there can only be one H1 tag, but many H2 tags.  In CSS, div id names must be only used once, but div classes can be used more than once (infinite).

It’s called The Zero One or Infinity (ZOI) Rule.