I have a business degree but I did not get an opportunity to work due to personal reasons.
I now feel comfortable to get back to work but the current market scenario doesn’t seem to support it.
I am looking for a career change and healthcare business analyst looks a promising field.
I have one question.
*I have no prior IT/programming experience but I do have science background which I haven’t used in years as well as business.
I would like to work in healthcare. What skills do I need to acquire inorder to start of as an entry level in this field?
What Skills Are Needed For Healthcare Business Analysis Jobs?
Before making a plunge into a brand new career, first ask yourself Why?
Ask yourself why the healthcare domain business analyst position appeals to you. A healthcare business analyst covers a wide-range of possibilities.
It encompasses everything healthcare-related, including pharma and life science industries. Some of these specific areas are not just “business as usual”.
Decisions you implement as a healthcare business analyst could literally mean the difference between someone’s life or death, in the long run.
So, it is important to enter this field with the right motivation and passion.
First Things First:
Before a carpenter puts up walls and floor boards on a new house, he first must pour a foundation.
Otherwise, the walls may eventually cave in and the house begin to need repair, or completely fall apart.
It is the same with deciding upon the healthcare business analyst’s position. Before pursuing this domain, you must first lay your professional foundation by learning what a Business Analyst does.
First – Get To Learn Business Analysis
A Business Analyst does not mean that you have to know intricate details of every programming language. The Business Analyst is important because you will be working as a go-between for the software developers and the business departments.
The Healthcare business analyst must first have the skills of an IT business analyst. Then, you can add to this, your skills and extensive knowledge of science, by applying your BA skills to the healthcare domain.
- Volunteer in the healthcare industry
- Begin to associate with healthcare professionals through online and live networking groups
- Update your resume’ to reflect your healthcare experience associated with your newly-learned business analyst skills.
- Look for an entry-level healthcare job.
Pouring the Foundation:
To lay a good foundation for your career change, you need to learn as much as you can about what a Business analyst does. The basics of a BA Training includes knowing how to:
This will involve a great amount of communication with both the business side and the Information Technology side of the organization.
Your communication skills will concentrate on both verbal and written communication skills.
-Analyzing and problem solving skills – After you have gathered the requirements for the project, you will begin to decipher which ones are most important and go about implementing a plan to solve the problem.
The more you know about how both the business and the IT departments work, the easier and more effective this part of your job as business analyst will be.
Part of this task will involve communicating through demonstrations. You will use Use Cases and Unified Modeling Language (UML).
-Follow the proposed problem solving through to completion by making sure the end user understands the solution and that it is workable for everyone.
It’s time to Build the Walls:
Now that you have a good foundation laid, by receiving training and learning skills of a Business Analyst, it’s time to put up the walls of your house.
Once you have these basic skills and knowledge of a BA, you can then healthcare domain knowledge or experience.
And depending on what particular area of healthcare you decide upon, there will be additional skills you will need to acquire:
-Certifications – A background in science is a good start. Depending on the precise type of healthcare you are wanting to work in, you may also need to add to your education by attaining healthcare-related certifications.
-Legal aspects – Stay up to date with the most recent laws, and proposed rule changes to the healthcare field. Healthcare laws change, sometimes rapidly.
Knowing the most recent changes is vital to performing well in the health care industry. Changes in laws such as how to properly handle Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), and more.
-The Language of Healthcare – Within the healthcare domain, you will encounter terminology that others within the field are familiar with.
Specifically, a business analyst may also encounter specific tools that are only used in healthcare.
For instance, the Healthcare Domain Reference Data Model (HRDM) is used to integrate Information Technology. Tools such as Statistical Analysis System (SAS) software may also be used.
Put on a Roof and Doors
When the foundation of a building is poured, and the walls have been constructed; it’s time to put on a roof and doors.
Once your building is complete, you can begin to invite people and welcome them inside.
In terms of finding a new career, this means that you’ve acquired the necessary training to become a Business Analyst (your foundation), you’ve added knowledge of the specific healthcare domain (your walls); and now it’s time to finish the construction and invite people inside by updating your resume’ and cover letter and begin the interviewing process to land a job as a business analyst in the healthcare domain.
Cover letter and resume’ writing, followed up with interviews, is a skill in and of itself. You may be very qualified to do a job, but unless you convince the hiring manager with your first impression, you will be passed over in being offered the career.
Your cover letter and resume’ is your doorway to your future. You can either keep this door shut, or open it wide and welcoming for the hiring company to see all of your value inside.
Approach your resume’ and cover letter writing from the perspective of what you can add to a company.
- You will want to summarize all of your strengths, including any work experience and training that you have in the healthcare field.
- Write each individual cover letter differently and directed specifically toward what an individual company is wanting.
- Then, practice your interviewing skills so you are confident and relaxed during the interview.
If you pursue your change of careers by taking the proper steps, in the right order, your house will be completely built. You will have a job offer in the healthcare domain before you know it.
To find a company that is hiring; word of mouth, from other healthcare professionals you have networked with, can provide you with a foot in the door, because the recommendation comes from a known and trusted source.
Additionally; to find companies that are hiring, search job search sites, such as Dice.com or Monster.com; or visit a local job placement agency (one that specializes in placing professionals).