The analysis of a project is the breakdown of how a system interacts and works within all related components. A project analysis is the first step to designing any new changes for an organization. Systems analysis is (1) the survey and planning of the system and project, (2) the study and analysis of the existing business and information system, and (3) the definition of business requirements and priorities for a new or improved system. A popular synonym is logical design. (Newton, 2013) An organization performs an analysis of an existing system to decide if changes will benefit the daily operations. The analysis performed must be accurate and reliable. Information Gathering
There are many methods used to perform an analysis. The gathering of information is critical to implementing the right changes an organization may need. If the wrong information is gathered, the organization may waste time and money implementing a new system that either does not work or is useless to the operations of the organization. Organizations need to know the correct billing and coding functions are being used on a daily bases. They may choose several different ways to gather information to ensure the facility compensated is gaining the maximum benefits. Physicians frequently miss home health charges. The laws governing each state have requirements a physician must abide to bill time for plan over site. Physicians need ways to keep track of who is eligible for home health. The physician also needs to monitor how much time is involved during a 30-day period. Interviews
Interviews are one of the most common means to gather information. It is beneficial to the analysis to gather this information directly from those individuals who will be utilizing the new system. The interviews need proper planning and focus on each area of specialty. The best questions to ask are open-ended questions. These inquiries force the participant to give more information than just yes or no answers. When interviewing participants analyst should ask questions that enable a complete picture of what stakeholders need to create a system that is useful and cost effective. Questionnaires
Questionnaires are a great way to ask questions of stakeholders without a direct face-to-face encounter. Questionnaires create a more relaxed response from participants. This is a great method to use when you have a large organization and need to interview a large group of people. However, one drawback to this method is participants may write responses just to complete the form or not even give a response. Prototypes
Prototyping is another method in the arsenal of gathering information. This method based on information gathered and the system created; based on criteria produces a preliminary version. You show this to the client, who then gives you additional requirements. You change the application and cycle around with the client again. This repetitive process continues until the product meets the critical mass of business needs or for an agreed number of iterations (Mochal, 2008). Use Cases
Use cases are stories from the actors that describe how the system currently works and “…describe how the solution works from a user perspective” (Mochal, 2008). This method is helpful to analysts by giving a more useful understanding of what the new system needs to do. Using this method requires the analysts to refine the information into a format that shows specific details to outline the structure of requirements needed. Direct Observations
Direct observations can be most helpful when the stakeholder does not know how to explain in detail what goes on during a typical daily routine. In some cases, it might be more beneficial to take a ‘hands on approach’ to gain a better understanding of what is required. This method shows how the current system is used and will hopefully light the way to implementing better...