What Qualifications Are Needed To Become a Business Analyst?

 

What qualifications I should have to be a business analyst?

Will pursuing a business economics help me?

What else should I do to become a stock analyst or a business analyst?

Can you guide me on this?

Answer
It is not very clear what exactly you want to be. You seem to be mixing up being a stock analyst and a business analyst.

They are two (2) completely different professions and you must be clear as to what you want to be.

For the sake of making things clear to you, let me describe both roles.

Stock Analysis
A stock analyst is expected to analyze the stock market and predict how the market will function, what it will do or it won’t do.

He also forecasts how a particular stock will fare.

The responsibilities or roles of a stock analyst may include:

  • Doing a lot of researches
  • Providing recommendations to help clients make decisions regarding investments
  • Going through financial statements
  • Analyzing prices of commodities
  • Analyzing sales, costs, expenses and tax rates
  • Deriving at a conclusion of how much a company’s future earnings

Business Analyst
A business analyst analyzes the business processes, procedures, policies and requirements; and provides recommendations for improving business.

A company depends on business analysts to come up with ideas and recommendations to improve its business and make maximum profit.

A business analyst Identifies areas of inefficiency in the existing system and analyzes business requirements.

He/she also suggests processes for integration with technology and ways to increase productivity.

A business analyst’s role involves gathering requirements and providing detailed analysis of the data collected.

He/she also prepares requirements documents and estimate of cost and effort involved.

Ensuring data integrity, providing data quality and validation preparing test scripts and executing test scripts and creating business models, process models, data models and workflow models are also part of a business analyst’s responsibilities.

The similarity between these two roles is that a stock analyst uses fundamental analysis concepts like a business analyst does.

However, they are different in that a stock analyst predicts the market fluctuations and help investors to make investment decision and a business analyst analyzes the policies and inefficiency of a company, and then recommends ways to improve business.

Educational Qualifications For Business Analysts
Many business analysts have MBA degrees or management / business / information systems college degrees.

However an MBA or a degree in business economics alone will not guarantee you a business analysis degree.

You need to have the required skills. Some of these required skills:
Excellent communication skills
Interpersonal skills
Knowledge of web-based technologies like .NET Framework, CSS, HTML
Knowledge of SQL, data analysis, reporting, UML, Visual Basic programming, and Microsoft Office Automation
Analytical skills
Problem solving skills
Decision making skills

If you already have a lot of business analysis experience (5 years of documented experience), you may consider a Certified Business Analyst Professional (CBAP) from Australian Institute of Business Analysis or International Institute of Business Analysis.

Meanwhile, if you are planning to be a business analyst, several years of experience in an IT company will do more good to your career plans.

Doing a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) will be a good idea, if you are planning to be a stock analyst.

Having said all this, how you will get a job in any of these fields will entirely depends on your skill sets and how you market them.

Remember that businesses want to increase profitability. So, if you are hired, it will be with a view of achieving critical business goals, which means that you will have to be able to prove your worth.

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    3 Responses to "What Qualifications Are Needed To Become a Business Analyst?"

      • Business Analysts Training   March 29, 2012 at 12:02 AM

        Yes, being in touch with customers and helping them find the best solutions will help you develop some of the soft skills you need to become a business analyst.

        After that, you simply have to develop the technical skills you need to become a business analyst.

        Both hard skills and soft skills are important because without either of them, you cannot become a business analyst!

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        • Manish Thakur   April 3, 2012 at 1:03 AM

          I completed my MCA in 2011 from MU and got a business development executive job in a small IT company.

          I want to become a business analyst but my company asked me to do an MBA in marketing so that I will have a better scope.

          Now which should I choose, an MBA if I want to become a business analyst / business development manager or project manager?

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