The rapid growth in the deployment of and enhancements to information technology solutions in business settings over the past 10 years has thrust the Business Analyst/IT Strategist into an increasingly prominent role throughout many sectors, including government, finance, healthcare and telecommunications. A crucial role in the software/system development life cycle, the Business Analyst gathers business requirements from various areas in the organization, and translates them into functional system design specifications that can be successfully executed by IT development teams. The role of the Business Analyst or IT Strategist is often critical to increasing project success rates.