It is a common understanding among people that the key activities of a business analyst such as eliciting, analyzing, validating and managing revolve around requirements only.
BABOK tries to eliminate this misconception. Business Analysts, at an initial or at some level, are also involved in the definition of the designs. The same activities that a BA performs for requirements, can be used for designs as well.
BABOK defines requirement and designs as,
‘Requirements are focused on the need, designs are focused on the solution’
The designs that are derived from initial requirements may, in turn, lead to the discovery of more requirements. Hence, the cycle continues, until the needs of stakeholder are satisfied within a context as shown in the image below.
Often, for a Business Analyst, to view and identify that subtle difference from any given information either as a requirement or a design become less significant as he is viewing it holistically, rather bits and pieces of the solution. For him, It is all about the eventual fulfillment of the need that his solution will provide and adds value.
Lets’ take an example from BABOK to clarify the above point,
A requirement is to view six months of sales data across multiple organizational units in a single view. Design of the same could be a sketch of a dashboard.
Though, a designer may have the freedom to choose the best UX and the designs for the aforementioned example. Business Analyst eventually has to jump in and analyze those designs to ensure that the designs are aligned with the requirements, or if there is any information missing from the proposed designs that are not fulfilling a need, involving him to be a part of this process as well.