Principal Business Architect/Analyst – Farmington, MN 55024

General Summary

The Principal Business Architect/Analyst leads business process modeling and redesign efforts within and across Dakota Electric s internal business and technical departments.

They will analyze and document business needs and processes; elicit and document business and technical requirements; define and analyze function, process and data models; document and communicate business requirements to technical and business side personnel/vendors; create conceptual and logical level application and database designs for enterprise level information technology projects as well as workgroup level solutions. At times they will serve as project lead/manager to plan, organize and direct project teams in large and/or more complex projects, or to design, plan and implement smaller workgroup level efforts.

The Principal Business Analyst must work well within a team environment as they will work closely with all of Dakota Electric s internal departments at all levels in the organization to develop effective, high-value solutions that can be used to make sound business decisions. They will build an understanding of the business at a level of detail that enables them to communicate with managers and other non-technical staff about highly technical issues in a fashion that is understandable to them, as well as communicate with technicians about broad organizational and strategic issues.

This position will work with Dakota Electric s major business systems and support staff, such as: Customer Information Systems/Billing (CIS), Cost Accounting and Financial Systems, Automated Meter Information (AMI), Load Management (LM), Geographic Information Systems (GIS); Meter Data Management (MDM); Outage Management Systems (OMS), Work Management Systems (WMS). Therefore, the incumbent must have sufficient understanding of/proficiency with the hardware, software and functionality of these systems.

Off-hours support of systems is required, and this position will participate in a rotating after hours on-call program. (On-call for approx. 4 weeks per year)


1. Comply with established Dakota Electric Association safety and operating rules, policies, procedures, and guidelines. Be responsible for reporting any un-safe practices and/or hazards to a supervisor, manager or Vice President. Be committed to and actively involved in Dakota Electric s safety programs, initiatives and performance.

2. The key responsibility of this position is leading process modeling and re-engineering efforts to ensure high quality information is available to support decisions for the management and optimization of Dakota Electric s assets.

3. Lead efforts within and across Dakota Electric s internal departments to elicit, document, analyze and evaluate work processes, emerging business information needs, or business re-engineering opportunities.

4. Work with Dakota Electric s internal departments, other work teams, business partners, and vendors to elicit, understand, analyze, document, and communicate existing and emerging business information needs.

5. Plan and facilitate sessions to gather user requirements and develop, validate and secure acceptance of business requirements documents. Translate business requirements into detailed functional specifications. Work with subject matter experts to create business process models, UML diagrams and information models, such as: use cases, activity and process flow diagrams, function maps, entity relationship diagrams and wireframes.

6. Identify specific business opportunities that promote operational change and present recommendations to business and technology executives.

7. Create and execute test plans to ensure the accuracy, integrity and usability of solutions.

8. Serve as coordinator to provide project initiation; project scope control; detailed requirements identification and management; conceptual level application and database design; logical level application and database design; quality assurance; process re-engineering; standards and policy compliance and project management to multiple enterprise and workgroup level information technology projects.

9. Support special project needs by performing assigned project tasks according to the project schedule and assisting the project manager and team with the development of the project plan. As a project leader; directs and delegates tasks as needed.

10. Develops project charters and plans, coordinates with others, communicates changes and progress, and completes projects on time and on budget.

11. Stay abreast of related new technology and industry standards. Explore and evaluate new technologies which may benefit Dakota Electric s operations. Coordinate the identification, acquisition, and implementation of new or upgraded hardware and software, and software development/productivity tools. Test new or demonstration products. Apply standards to existing systems.

12. Prepare a monthly activity report for their supervisor by the 1st of each month. Assist with annual budget and long-range plans and activities for the Information Services department and make recommendations to their supervisor.

13. Represents Dakota Electric on various Great River Energy, PUC, IEEE, University of Minnesota & MREA Committees and teams. This position also will be periodically called upon to provide papers and presentations to other groups.

14. Off-hours support of systems and participation in a rotating after hours on-call program. (On-call for approx. 4 weeks per year)

15. Other duties as assigned by supervisor.

Supervision/Direction of Others

1. Project Manager – May occasionally be required to manage projects.

2. Directs assigned employees, contract personnel and interns as needed.

Position Specifications

Educational Experience

Bachelor s degree in business, mathematics, statistics, computer science, decision sciences or another related field.

5-7 years of work experience which provides the skills and abilities to perform a job of this nature.

Equivalent combinations of education and experience may be considered.

Key Competencies

1. This position requires thorough knowledge of, ability to, and experience with planning concepts and methods for modeling and design of information architectures. The incumbent will: be experienced in developing conceptual (planning level), logical (design level), and physical (implementation level) process, data and application models; be skilled with UML diagramming, visualization and analysis packages; possess as working knowledge of personal computer hardware, software, networks, and operating systems.

2. This position requires the knowledge, ability, and experience to lead the development process using software engineering practices and tools: such as structured and object oriented analysis and design techniques, use of CASE and other software engineering tools, methodologies, as well as DEA, and industry standards.

3. This position requires knowledge of and experience in information technology development methodologies.

4. Working understanding of electric utility organizational, operational regulatory contexts, as well as external forces/impacts within the industry and factors affecting electric energy usage including economic trends, demographics, market conditions, and technological developments.

5. Ability to work independently, as well as on teams, make decisions and follow projects through to completion. Must accept multiple tasks and be adaptable to a variety of requests.

6. Enjoys helping others, is friendly, listens and responds promptly to customer concerns and complaints and follows through to ensure commitments are met. Manages difficult or emotional customer situations. Solicits feedback to improve service.

7. Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner. Gathers and analyzes information skillfully. Possesses the ability to think both abstractly and concretely; to classify, organize, and synthesize large amounts of information into coherent models, designs, and requirements of the organization and its information resources. Generates creative solutions, develops innovative approaches and ideas, and demonstrates attention to detail. Must demonstrate a high degree of creativity, foresight and mature judgment.

8. Must be innovative in order to creatively develop new solutions to problems. Seeks, recommends, develops, supports and encourages new ideas. Pursues training and development opportunities to continuously build knowledge and skills and shares expertise with others.

9. Ability to communicate effectively in oral/audio and written/visual forms. Speaks clearly and persuasively in positive or negative situations, listens and gets clarification, responds well to questions and participates in meetings. Ability to consult with business users to gain an understanding of their business and analytical needs, advise them on applicable strategies and methodologies, and assist them in designing business intelligence solutions. Writes clearly and informatively, edits work for grammar and spelling, and varies writing style to meet needs.

10. Must have the ability to build and maintain effective working relationships and work well in a team environment across departments and at all levels of the organization. Demonstrates effective leadership skills through leading teams, providing technical direction, mentoring team members, and the ability to effectively represent DEA s interests when interfacing with vendors, suppliers, and outside entities. Exhibits objectivity and openness to others views, gives and welcomes feedback, contributes to building a positive team, and supports everyone s efforts to succeed.

11. Treats people with respect, keeps commitments, and accepts responsibility for own actions, inspires the trust of others, works with integrity and upholds organizational values.

12. Follows policies and procedures, supports company goals and values, promotes a harassment-free environment, supports affirmative action and respects diversity.

13. Uses discretion and maintains confidentiality in sensitive and personal matters related to the function.

14. Must have a valid driver s license.

Physical Demands/Working Conditions

The working environment is Office/Professional, and the physical demands and working conditions for this position are identified on the Office/Professional template. On-call availability at night and on weekends is required on a rotating basis. (approx. 4 weeks/year) Occasional extra work hours and up to 5% travel may also be necessary. In addition, the following demands may be required:

1. Lifting/Carrying: The employee will occasionally lift and carry CPU s and monitors weighing up to 40 pounds for short distances.

2. Reaching: The employee will occasionally perform cabling tasks reaching under desks, plugging in cables, answering telephone, and pulling wires, access spaces above ceiling panels, reaching for books and other items on and above desk.

3. Climbing: The employee will be required to climb when data cable needs servicing above ceiling panels, at a height of 10-15 above the floor.

(All duties should be considered essential functions per the Americans with Disabilities Act.)


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