What credentials are needed to aquire an entry level postion as Business Analyst?
How does one get their foot in the door? Since experience is one of the prequisites to getting your CBAP.
How does a person get a BA position in the first place to gain needed experience?
Credentials are a set of criteria that will establish you are qualified and will get you in the door. The three best credentials to gain in becoming a business analyst are knowledge, skills and experience.
Your first and most important step in becoming a business analyst is to seek after gaining the most important credential you can offer – The knowledge that you bring to the job.
Communicating what you know demonstrates that you understand the knowledge. Before you visit a foreign country, you learn enough about the location to “fit in”.
This means learning to talk like you belong. The same is true with becoming a business analyst. Learn to talk like a business analyst. Know what terms like elicitation, SDLC, stakeholder, UI and validation mean.
Discover as much information as you can about how a business analyst interacts with business users. Learn how business analysts use communication skills in their speaking, presentation during meetings and report writing.
Gather as much information as you can by reading every pertinent book, article and professional document you can find on the topic of what a business analyst does.
Include overall business knowledge about general business analyst duties. Learn information about requirements (planning, management, assessment, validation, analysis, elicitation, documentation), UML and Use Cases. Also gain knowledge about specific domains, such as banking, finance, telecommunications or healthcare.
As a business analyst you will most likely be expected to have a good basic understanding of the IT department and how to integrate technology into your problem-solving tasks.
Begin now by sinking your teeth into technical knowledge about tools and techniques used by a business analyst.
These include information about requirements gathering, analysis and user acceptance testing.
You will also need basic understanding of Microsoft Word, Excel or Visio along with collaboration tools, requirement management tools, use case management and prototyping tools.
Your second, most important credential as a business analyst is the skills you bring to the job.
It is important to apply the knowledge you have learned to prove to a hiring manager that you can actually do the job of a business analyst.
Skills are different from knowledge because while you can gain knowledge and comprehension by reading books and articles or by watching educational videos, skills are developed when you repeatedly perform a business analysis task successfully.
The best way to develop a skill is by practicing the task and actually doing it. For example, if you want to gain the skill of writing Use Cases, the best way to go about it is to practice writing a Use Case.
Keep practicing these skills until they become second nature to you. The more Use Cases you write according to standards, the better skilled you will become at writing Use Cases.
Sharpen your skills by finding an online training program. Business Analyst Bootcamp is online and allows you to practice and gain hands-on knowledge while you learn. Apply this to every skill needed to become a business analyst.
Business analysis experience is the third most important credential to establish when attempting to enter this career field.
There is no getting around the fact that experience takes time. Business Analysis Experience is developed as you practice solving larger business analysis tasks over longer periods of time.
Gain the experience you need to become a business analyst by working on a project over the course of several months or years. Begin where you are right now before you even have the title of Business Analyst.
While certifications can help experienced senior business analyst professionals advance from one position to another position after they are hired, they are not the primary qualifications for getting hired as a business analyst.
In many certification bodies, you cannot apply unless you already have several years of documented and proven experience as a business analyst or senior professional.
Some require at least 7,500 hours of experience before you even qualify to take the test. Certified or not, hiring managers prefer to use experience and job interviews to select who they hire rather than certifications.
Follow the steps to obtaining these three most important entry level credentials in becoming a business analyst (Knowledge + Skills + Experience). Soon you will find yourself on your way to a business analyst career.