Here is a question on the roles or duties of a business analyst.
I want to become a business analyst. My working experience includes Web site editing or developing and User Acceptance Testing (UAT).
I am also pursuing an MBA but I don’t know what I should do to become a business analyst?
Can you guide me ?
With the IT industry experiencing growth by leaps and bounds, the role of a business analyst has become a buzzword in many business organizations.
However, it is very difficult to define what business analysis is or how to become a business analyst.
The following article will help you identify roles and required skills of a business analyst, which, in turn, I hope, will aid you in making a sound career decision.
Who is a Business Analyst?
A business analyst is a person who works closely with clients and analyzes the business process, policies, business requirements, and customer requirements; and provides recommendations for business improvements.
To simplify, a business analyst:
Analyzes the business processes to identify areas of inefficiency
Analyzes business requirements
Identifies process that can be integrated with technology for better efficiency
Develops a solution through technology integration
Provides recommendations to beef up productivity and business enhancement
According to Kevin Brennan, “A business analyst is responsible for acting as a bridge between stakeholders in an organization in order to identify, define, and validate the internal changes, particularly the creation or improvement of processes, policies, and information technology systems, that are required for that organization to achieve its goals.”
Leave alone the definitions; in many organizations, a business analyst is a liaison between business and IT.
He/she closely works with business team and IT team to suggest and provide solutions to a business situation or requirement.
Roles of Business Analyst
Gathering the business/user requirements through interaction and research
Preparing a business/user requirements document
Preparing an estimate of cost and effort involved completing the project
Creating a project initiation document with project scope, goals, execution methods and the like
Creating various analysis models such as business models, process models, data models and workflow models
Developing end-user support and implementing it
In other words, a business analyst constantly studies an organization’s data, their business processes; current business processes and makes recommendations to improve business.
He or she is also responsible for training employees and creating standards and procedures, and providing detailed reports on the organization’s current operations and suggestions for changes.
Good analytical and problem solving skills to understand various business functions and requirements
Understanding of user perspectives and ability to suggest effective solutions
Excellent communication, writing skills, and interpersonal skills
Know-how of business and its related skills such as strategic planning, business methodologies, innovative business improvement methods, case development, and business writing
Leadership and decision-making skills
Excellent knowledge of technology
Knowledge of technologies like J2EEE/.NET and Web-based technologies like JS/HTML/ASP is going to be a great advantage if you are seriously thinking of a career as a business analyst.
Moreover, knowledge of SQL, data analysis, reporting, UML, Visual Basic programming, and Microsoft Office Automation will go long way to help you snatch a job easily.
Though having an MBA is a good thing, it does not necessarily equip with you all required skills to become an efficient business analyst.
You must work hard to master the above mentioned skills to be a successful business analyst.
A degree in business related fields or computer science coupled with the required skills and work experience can help you obtain a job as a business analyst.
Besides academic qualifications, it is essential to gain some work experience in business, communications, public relations, information technology or software engineering before you can progress to be a business analyst.
You can also try and complete Certified Business Analyst Professional (CBAP). Australian Institute of Business Analysis and International Institute of Business Analysis are two good institutes that offer such certification.
All these points discussed so far clearly indicate that there is no short cut to become a business analyst. With a lot of hard work and perseverance in building your skills, you will be able to become a business analyst.
Gain knowledge in various domains and work towards familiarizing business and intricacies associated with it.