This is a community discussion forum on how the current widespread health pandemic has affected your life. Most of us are getting through the second week of working from home, but it has had even more drastic impact on some of us and others in our community. Please keep those who have lost their jobs or contracted the virus in your prayers and thoughts. Remember to do kind things for others in our community to help them cope. Remember to reach out to extended family to check on them and see what they may need, especially the elderly.
Put your comments below to tell us what impact the pandemic has had on your and your family’s life? How are you coping? What measures has your company taken to keep you safe and healthy? Do you know a store that still has toilet paper on the shelves? What tips do you have to help your community colleagues cope with the new normal of our lives, at least for the time being?
Use the square next to the title of this post to add your comment to this discussion forum.
The coronavirus outbreak certainly has interrupted our lives both here in Kentucky and internationally. These are truly unprecedented and uncertain times, because we have never faced something so widespread and disruptive before. Never in our lifetimes have so many companies sent their workforce home to work from home or taken other actions; and never before has so many countries had state of emergencies to deal with a widespread health crisis.
Even though these are uncertain times, do remember that our company and country leaders and health officials are taking these actions to protect our health and well-being. We must do our part by staying informed with accurate information, don’t pass on miss-information concerning the current situation, and remain calm during this uncertain time. Most of us will not contract the coronavirus, and those that do will survive it. I am confident that a vaccine is on the near horizon.
Bluegrass IIBA Chapter is doing our part to keep our community together, virtually since we can’t physically, as we progress through this time. We held our chapter meeting yesterday completely remote. Notice went out quickly, the event listing was updated with a notice that we were going completely virtual, and the remote attendee link went out to everyone who wanted to attend. About 85% of the people who registered to attend the meeting did attend. It was a great presentation on data analysis by Deena Chadwick, the CommonSensical BA.
We have added an Agile Analysis Virtual Meet-up on Friday, March 27th, at noon EDT to the calendar as an opportunity to talk about a topic that many of us wish to learn more about. We will also be bringing back our Online BA Gaming event next week to give us opportunity to have fun during this time. Please keep watch on the website for that event listing.
Our April meeting will likely be held completely virtual as well, and our plans for a community event at Breakout Games has been postponed to the fall.
We wish you all great health and calmness during this trying time. If Bluegrass IIBA Chapter can be of more service to you, please reach out to me and let me know.
Bluegrass IIBA Chapter welcomes new chapter sponsorship from Business Analysis Knowledge Academy. “We’re excited to see the commitment to the business analysis community and professional education that the products and training of Business Analysis Knowledge Academy shows” says LeShai Phelps, Vice President of Sponsorship for Bluegrass IIBA Chapter; “further shown through this support of the Bluegrass IIBA Chapter’s programs and mission.”
“We have two excellent study guides and all the supporting training material to assist students to prepare for IIBA® certifications in both the traditional and agile business analysis roles” says Adrian Fabon, Vice President of Sales for Business Analysis Knowledge Academy. “We wanted to start here in our home state of Kentucky, but we will expand the use of our products and services through IIBA chapters world-wide” he added.
Business Analysis Knowledge Academy began in 2014 by providing business analysis educational workshops through regional IIBA chapters. Upon attending these workshops, a group of business analysis professionals collaborated with the owners to expand that educational offering. This eventually led to the writing of an Agile Analysis Certification (IIBA®-AAC) Study Guide and an ECBA™ Certification Study Guide and supporting training material to support the certification study groups of those regional IIBA chapters. This is being expanded today with new courses for business analysis professionals.
“The study guides and training materials of Business Analysis Knowledge Academy are the best on the market for their topics and add great value to our study groups and training offerings” says Aaron Whittenberger, Vice President of Professional Development for Bluegrass IIBA Chapter. “We are extremely happy to see their continued support of the business analysis community and their commitment to business analysis training shown through their sponsorship of our programs.”
Bluegrass IIBA Chapter is championing the advancement of the business analysis profession in the Bluegrass state of Kentucky and beyond. Bringing awareness of best in class educational resources for business analysis professionals supports that mission. Bluegrass IIBA Chapter is dedicated to assisting business analysts advance their careers. This brings awareness of the value that business analysts provide organizations in the Bluegrass state and throughout the world.
Business Analysis Knowledge Academy products can be found at: https://www.baknowledgeacademy.com/products
Congratulations to Lauren Jeandervin on becoming IIBA®-AAC Certified
Lauren Jeandervin, AAC is a Technical Writer at Verisk 3E in Canton, OH. Lauren has 5 years of experience working in an Agile software development environment on Scrum teams. She specializes in writing product release notes, specifications, training materials, and more. Additionally, as an experienced software tester, she works as a stakeholder and subject matter expert to support the development teams. She participated in the 2019 Agile Analysis Study Group provided by the chapter, and passed the IIBA® Agile Analysis Certification (IIBA®-AAC) exam on Saturday, December 28, 2019.
Verisk 3E™ delivers chemical regulatory compliance solutions and services to help companies reduce risk, drive continuous improvement and create new growth opportunities.
If interested in IIBA® Agile Analysis Certification (IIBA®-AAC), please see Bluegrass IIBA Chapter's current Agile Analysis study group: 2020 Winter Agile Analysis Study Group
IIBA® is offering 20% all certification exam fees, except ECBA+™ program, until December 31, 2019. You must write your exam before end of year to get the 20% rebate on the fees. If you are interested in getting the IIBA-AAC, IIBA-CBDA, ECBA™, CCBA® or CBAP® and are able to take the exam by end of year you can save 20% on the exam fees. Visit the IIBA Certification page to register for your chosen IIBA certification program.
You will not be able to take any IIBA® certification exam from January 1st through January 15th, 2020. IIBA will be switching all their certification exams to PSI, the exam delivery partner that currently delivers the ECBA™, IIBA-AAC and IIBA-CBDA exams. The CCBA® and CBAP® will be switching over to that platform to write the exam. You will once again be able to take IIBA certification exams on January 16, 2020. This means you will be able to take the CCBA or CBAP exam from the comfort of your own computer/home.
November 1st was declared Global Business Analysis Day by the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA®) back in 2016. It is a day that we can celebrate the value that business analysts bring to their organizations and stakeholders as well as celebrate the value that our volunteers and chapters bring our local business analysis communities. IIBA takes the opportunity to celebrate our volunteers and chapters by announcing Volunteer of the Year and Chapter Awards through an online broadcast on Global Business Analysis Day.
We have an excellent IIBA® chapter right here in the great Commonwealth of Kentucky with the Bluegrass IIBA Chapter, based in Lexington with branches in Louisville and Owensboro. A small group of members from Lexington and Louisville came together at Total Wine & More in Hamburg area to tune into the IIBA Volunteer and Chapter Awards announcement broadcast. Bluegrass IIBA chapter was honored to receive the Delivering Membership Value Chapter Award in this year’s Chapter Awards from IIBA.
It was announced that Bluegrass IIBA Chapter added two webinar series, Agile Analysis Huddle and Digital Transformation Chalk Talk, to their programs this year. They also supplemented their annual BABOK Study Group with an Agile Analysis Study Group to assist individuals prepare for the Agile Analysis Certification (IIBA®-AAC). Bluegrass IIBA Chapter increased its membership by 37% this year; and provided 42 (with 729 attendees) chapter events, 37 (705 attendees) of which were professional development opportunities. Seven more people in the area are IIBA certified thanks to Bluegrass IIBA Chapter. Bluegrass IIBA Chapter also provides a mentoring program to its member and the Kentucky business analysis community. These were the reasons noted that Bluegrass IIBA Chapter won the Delivering Membership Value Chapter Award.
In the six-year life span of the Bluegrass IIBA Chapter, this makes the fourth year in a row that the chapter won an award, and the year before that they were honorable mention. See their award history:
We were also honored in the Volunteer of the Year Awards:
See a complete list of this year’s Chapter Awards winners:
Chapter of the Year
Minneapolis / St. Paul (Minnesota, USA)
United Kingdom (Europe)
Ottawa-Outaouais (Ontario, Canada)
Community Outreach and Engagement
Hyderabad (Telangana, India)
Delivering Membership Value
Bluegrass (Kentucky, USA)
Montreal (Quebec, Canada)
Vancouver (British Columbia, Canada)
BA Collaborative in front of the Vermont State House in Montpelier, VT. From left to right: Chary Scott, Alex Geller, Helen Linda, and Kayla Robinson
Three Vermont chapter members participated in the 2019 BABOK v.3 Virtual Study Group and passed their respective certification exams this fall. They also participated in a bi-weekly BA Collaborative group led by fellow Business Analyst, Alex Geller (CCBA), discussing application of BABOK techniques as well as certification exam tips as tricks. Both groups, along with intensive individual study, were instrumental in their collective success.
Kayla Robinson, CCBA is a Business Analyst with GPI/Greenman-Pedersen, Inc. based in Albany, NY. GPI is an engineering and construction services consulting firm specializing in the innovative design and construction of transportation infrastructure and building projects. Kayla has been a consultant analyst with the State of Vermont Agency of Digital Services supporting the Agency of Transportation on their Construction Management System replacement project for 5 years.
Chary Loadholt Scott, CBAP is an IT Business Analyst with the State of Vermont Agency of Digital Services supporting the Agency of Human Services in Waterbury, VT. ADS is a team of information technology professionals providing services and resources to partner Agencies in state government. Chary has been an analyst for 7 years specializing in public safety, health, and social services projects.
Helen Linda, CBAP is a Continuous Improvement Program Manager with the State of Vermont Agency of Transportation as a member of the Performance and Strategic Initiatives Section in Montpelier, VT. The section leverages data and people to promote a culture continuous improvement at VTrans. Helen has been an analyst for 4 years specializing in health and transportation projects and 10 years in library projects.
Bluegrass IIBA Chapter's Winter 2020 BABOK Study Group is scheduled. Register early to ensure you receive study material well in advance of the start of the study group.
The Board of Directors of the Bluegrass IIBA Chapter has decided to open the remote attendance option for chapter meetings to anyone who would like to take advantage of this option. The option was always open to people who were not in the Kentucky – Indiana area so that they could attend remotely. The Board has decided to make this option available to our primary customer base as well.
“We realize that the business environment is changing, and our customer and member demands are changing right along with it” says Aaron Whittenberger, Vice President of Professional Development. He added “this action is in response to those changing needs.” Vice President of Marketing and Communication, Bill Powers noted “we are all busy and not everyone has the time to go somewhere to attend a meeting but may have the time to attend remotely”.
“This will remove the face-to-face networking that has always been part of our meeting” added Kathy Leigh, President of the Bluegrass IIBA Chapter. She added “but not everyone wants that.” The Board makes this change realizing that it cuts down the time commitment of attendees. Attendees can be online at 6:20 p.m. (Eastern time) to hear chapter news and the presentation topic of the meeting. So, it cuts out the first 20 minutes of networking time and drive time.
For those that wish to network, our groups will continue to physically meet in Lexington, Louisville, Owensboro and Burlington, VT. For those that don't want to network or want reduced time commitment, the remote option is available.
The idea was originally brought to the Board in September by Vice President of Sponsorship LeShai Phelps. The Board discussed it and tabled it to gain further feedback. They found desire to have this option. Some participants say that even though they like to attend in person, having a fall back option when they can’t get to the place or don’t have the time is a nice option.
Chapter meeting registrants will now be asked if they intend to attend in person or remotely during the registration process. This is done just so the remote attendee link can be sent to those who want it. Aaron noted that this opens our programs on where we can pull participants from geographically. We had over 60 people participate in our study groups this year; half of them were not in the Kentucky, Indiana, Vermont geographic regions. Bluegrass IIBA Chapter is hoping this brings value to their participants and they see increased attendance at chapter meetings.
Congratulations to our newest IIBA®-AAC Certification Recipient
Ken Vander Horn, AAC
Ken Vander Horn, AAC is a senior Business Systems Analyst at IDEXX Laboratories in Westbrook, Maine. Ken has been an analyst over 20 years specializing in business systems analyst for the last 9 years. Agile has been a part of his experience since he first start working with Agile teams back in 2005. He participated in this year's Agile Analysis Study Group provided by the chapter, and passed the IIBA® Agile Analysis Certification exam on Friday, September 20, 2019.
IDEXX Laboratories is a global organization focusing on companion animal healthcare. They are in the business of helping Veterinarians provide the highest care they can to our pets. Ken is a founder of the IDEXX Analyst Community, a global community that promotes business analysis excellence through the IIBA materials and competencies. The community is nearly 900 members strong and hosts events that help analyst at IDEXX learn about IDEXX, grow their skills as an analyst, and connect with other across the organization.
The IDEXX Analyst Community is proud to be the 2019 recipient of the IIBA® Corporate Leadership Excellence in the Advancement of the Practice of Business Analysis award to be presented at the IIBA conference (BBC) in November. If you are attending be sure to say hello to Ken.
Aaron Whittenberger, CBAP, CSPO, AAC
Aaron passed the IIBA®-AAC exam on Sunday, September 8, 2019. He participated in this year's Agile Analysis Study Group provided by the chapter. Aaron credits the study group for excellent teaching and providing the knowledge to be able to pass the exam.
Aaron Whittenberger has 30 years of Business and Information Technology experience, including 17 years of business analysis and 15 years as a Consultant. He earned his Certified Business Analyst ProfessionalTM (CBAP®) certification in 2008, and his Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO®) in 2018.
Aaron is Founding President of the Bluegrass IIBA Chapter, as well as has served the IIBA® as Regional Director of the Americas Eastern Region and the Chairperson of the Role Delineation Committee, responsible for the relevancy and validity of the IIBA® certification program. He is a 2016 Inductee into the Bluegrass Business Analysis Hall of Fame.
Aaron lives in Independence, KY and has four children. He recently retired from umpiring high school baseball, but still enjoys watching his kids play soccer, football and baseball.
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Based in Lexington, Kentucky and serving all interested Kentucky Business Analysts
Mailing address: Bluegrass IIBA Chapter | 1588 Leestown Road, Suite 130-111 | Lexington, KY 40511