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Business Analyst Skills, Market Demand and Salary Trends



Introduction

Are you exploring challenging and exciting IT career opportunities?  Do you wish to unleash your potential in analytical problem solving and building deep business acumen?

If yes, then there is a career path that exactly matches your expectations - that’s “Business Analysis”.

Business Analysis has gained momentum on the professional front as it is predicted that the number of Business Analyst jobs in the US will increase from current positions of 3,64,000 to 27,20,000. So far the Business analyst job has got a great outlook. Business analysis is a growth market as long as businesses are cropping up and needing the resource that could help them invest their resources and money in the right place and at the right time.

Now we know Business Analysis is a career for you to be in, in the following blog post, we will stress the sketch of the Business Analyst career path and understand “why to learn business analyst skills” “What are the required business analyst skills” and “how to learn business analyst skills”.

First Things First - Who is a Business Analyst?

 Business Analyst

Business Analysts are analytical people who act as a bridge between the business’s objectives and IT. They ensure effective communication and flow of work between stakeholders, developers, and project team members to execute projects by cutting down costs and focusing on improving the quality of business processes & deliverables.

Business analysts help businesses define their priorities,, and get feedback and approval on business objectives. He/she forms a strategy based on those shared approved business objectives and turns them into a plan - ready to be executed by the IT staff and project members.

The role of business analysts depends on company to company and it is the most fast-paced and ever-evolving job profile one can ever be in.

What Business Analysts do?

Business Analysts

  • Business Analysts’ typical role is to evaluate business processes, goals, and structures to identify reasons linking to business gaps and determine information-infused solutions to fill those gaps. 
  • Effective Business Analysts help to identify the profitable direction in which businesses can move to fulfill their bottom line.
  • They act as a translator between management and IT to resort to the actions equating inefficiencies in processes, software product quality, and services delivered to end customers.
  • They help to simplify the technical jargon for the management and the non-technical stakeholders - so that everybody stays aware of the technical tasks deployed.

Generally, there are 4 types of analysis a BA generally do:

  • Business model analysis - To define policies and market approaches
  • Strategic planning - To identify the changing needs of the company
  • System Analysis - To interpret requirements for the IT staff
  • Process design - To standardize the workflows

Business Analyst delivers solutions in a lot of diverse types as data models, business plans, strategic plans, flowcharts, etc.

Let’s understand the Business Analysts role with a real-time example:

Suppose there is a bank called “XYZ” that wants to buy a loan management software from a software firm. The Business Analyst of the software firm would liaison with the bank team and his company’s technical team to help the bank get a thorough knowledge about the loan management software they are interested in integrating with their business system.

The BA would extract the loan processing requirements of the bank and would ensure that his company’s product is meeting the bank’s bottom line or not. If not, he would look into the gaps and create information-based technical solutions right along with IT staff to fill in those gaps and unsatisfied experiences of the business customer XYZ bank.

Typical Job Responsibilities of Business Analysts

Responsibilities of Business Analysts

To acquire the best business analyst skills, it's crucial to possess knowledge of processes. In a technical product/services-based firm, a Business Analyst is responsible for collecting, understanding, analyzing, and documenting the business customer’s software requirements through strong business acumen.

The activities of BAs fluctuate from company to company and project to project, however, there are a few general obligations that he/she performs:

  • They assess business needs by taking sheer communication between management and IT staff, or by conducting workshops, meetings, and surveys with stakeholders.
  • They know how technological solutions need to be implemented and thus, create a plan that utilizes those solutions to help businesses meet their end goals.
  • They define business requirements, do detailed business analysis, and trace out problems and solutions for the technical and operational changes.
  • They work in collaboration with project heads and communicate the progress of the projects to the management and the stakeholders, and business customers.
  • They work in cohesion with the development team to guide them about the required product development and support the business development team in pre-sales activities.
  • Being technically flared, they even conduct software testing to check the product’s durability and performance traits before its final rollout.

So, these are a few responsibilities of a business analyst. In the following section, we will identify the key business analyst skills required to become a successful professional in this profession. 

Technical Skills of Business Analysts

Apart from a long list of soft skills, proficiency in technical skills helps them assess and improve the existing systems of the organization and address all the issues quickly and efficiently.

Business Analyst Skills list in Technical

Details

Software development understanding

  • Product development in an organization goes through these three methodologies - the waterfall model, rapid application development, and agile software development.
  • BA should know these methodologies deeply to get help for tasks of planning, analysis, and elicitation.
  • Knowing the process of development will help to better understand - how the product is developed, what stage the product is in, future activities of the project, and realization of how the contributed actions & solutions are responding to the success of the project. 

IT skills

  • BAs don’t sit and code but since they will be communicating between technical teams and management, they need to have quick information on IT space, its key terms, or related skills. It is considered one of the primary business analyst key skills.
  • Programming languages - Knowledge of any programming language Python, R, Java, Visual Basic, PHP, SQL.
  • Databases - Knowledge of types of databases, their applications, and database systems.
  • Testing - Since BA will be expected to conduct the testing, a BA should know of testing methods, test scripts, test cases, automated testing or so.
  • Operating systems - basic knowledge of Windows, iOS, and Linux.
  • MS office suite - MS Word, MS Powerpoint, MS outlook.
  • Analysis Tools and design documents - JIRA, Basecamp, Mantis, BRD, FRD, SRD.

Domain Knowledge

  • Every project for the analysis belongs to domains like Healthcare, banking, eCommerce, Insurance, supply chain, and so on.
  • Thus, a BA should be deeply familiar with a domain they are working around so that they can release more domain-specific analysis and solutions implementation.

Understanding of Essential BA Tools 

Business analysts uses various types of software or tools to capture and manage their needs. Here are some of the commonly used software;

  • Microsoft Office suite
  • JIRA 
  • Microsoft Visio 
  • Rational Requisite Pro
  •  IBM Rational Rose

Business Analysis Skills of Business Analysts

Apart from the soft and business analyst hard skills, Business Analysts should possess a plethora of resources to completely identify the business processes and assist the organizations with better productivity, efficiency, and profitability.

Business Analyst Skills list in Business Analysis 

Details

Requirement Elicitation

  • Elicitation means to extract, in a company, BAs are required to identify, collect, and extract information and requirements from management, stakeholders, and clients.
  • Thus, BAs must be able to facilitate an effective discussion via meetings, workshops, and scrum to extract the exact operational to technical requirements of the project for further completion.

Decision Making

  • BA should be quick and attentive in taking decisions.
  • Because a BA is expected to take rapid decisions such as controlling changes, deciding the viability of a project/product, extending the scope, taking management decisions, and so on.
  • They are also looked up for making decisions around requirement prioritization discussion, selecting and finalization of approaches, processes, and standards, planning meetings, and so on.

Documentation

  • The BA job role involves creating unambiguous, consistent, complete, and updated documents timely.
  • Business requirement documents (BRD) are one of the important documents that a BA should know how to draft end-to-end.

Analytical 

  • To be effective at meeting the needs of customers, a BA should have a quick-witted and analytical mind that could help with the effective identification of problems and gathering the right resources to support to bring the best solutions for them.
  • To do this, a BA should have an investigative approach, problem-solving, logical & critical thinking, and smooth interpersonal skills.

Creativity

  • Since not all problems in an organization will be of the same intensity, a BA needs to be creative, he needs to have an ability to think of out-of-box and novel solutions. This comes among the business analyst's key skills.
  • He should have a creative outlook & approaches while suggesting inputs on wireframes, prototypes, or whiteboard drawings.

Prototyping 

  • Business analysts work more like a visual illustration of the system and processes. It becomes quite easy for them to relate and make an assumption when stakeholders see the prototype of the system.
  • The Prototype also helps in eliminating misunderstandings and miscommunications during the development process and also reduces the time and money due to minimum or no changes in the system during delivery.

So, these are the business analyst core skills, that one must have to grow in this profession. 

Now, we have a quick sketch of the Business Analyst profile, let’s take you around the reasons why you should think of learning the Business Analysts skills around the actual work industry requirements.

5 Great Reasons Why You Should Learn Business Analyst Skills This Year

1. Business Analysts are paid great

According to data from Indeed, the BAs with the right skills & knowledge can expect to earn an average salary between $79,273 to $131,315 per year.

  • The BAs are paid highest in San Francisco (where the average salary is 28% higher than the national salary).
  • New York comes at the second number after SF (where the average salary is 18% higher than the national average).
  • Boston comes in 3rd position with a 7% higher average salary.

Here are the few job titles and their average annual salary that falls under Business Analysis only - data compiled from PayScale - have a look!

Job Profiles

Average Salary

Senior IT business analyst

$90,201

Business analyst III

$78,107

Systems business analyst

$78,095

Business solutions analyst

$75,243

IT business analyst

$74,000

Agile business analyst

$74,000

Technical business analyst

$71,489

ITSM business analyst

$66,891

Business intelligence analyst

$66,791

Application business analyst

$66,882

Junior IT business analyst

$65,330

Business analyst II

$64,981

Business performance analyst

$60,678

Business management analyst

$60,428

2. The job market is exploding for demand

Every year, businesses are contemplating the importance of Business Analysts and are creating positions for skilled & trained professionals. The business Analyst job market is expected to grow at 19% by the next decade. Around 8,80,000  jobs are expected to be created for BA professionals by 2026.

With that type of growth, it is the best time to learn Business Analyst skills and make a career in it, with leading entities.

3. BAs get great independence and flexibility

While it is not mandatory for gaining business analyst basic skills, this step will help you to add an advanced level skill set. After earning the certifications, start looking for some industry projects or internships as this will help to add to your knowledge base. Once you have the right knowledge and skills as a business analyst with real industry work exposure, apply that scored knowledge to fill in the full-time job applications. Also, check out these BA Interview questions to prepare yourself interview-ready! 

Hopefully, you are clear now on how to become a business analyst and gain the required skill set. 

4. BAs are needed in diverse work industries

Business Analysts skills and knowledge are required in diverse work industries like Finance, insurance, healthcare, software, hardware, telecom, government, eCommerce, supply chain, and many others. This means you get a great option to decide the type of work industry where you want to work and explore your career.

5. Brands are hiring skilled & certified Business Analysts

The top magnets like Microsoft, FedEx, American Express, Apple, Accenture, XPO logistics, Netflix, Ford, Amazon, and many others are incessantly looking for business analysts to meet their operational and technical efficiencies.

So these are the reasons why you should sit and learn Business Analyst skills.

Now wondering how to learn business analyst skills, next we are going to discuss the same.

How to Become a Business Analyst & Learn Business Analyst Skills?

Just 3 steps on how to learn Business Analyst skills from business analyst basic skills to advanced level:

1. Join an accredited Business Analyst Training Platform

Take the training knowledge to qualify and earn the Business Analysts certifications which are dominating in the job market. 

The Business Analyst Certification Online you can consider approaching are:

  • IIBA Certification of Competency in Business Analysis (CCBA)
  • IIBA Entry Certificate in Business Analysis (ECBA)
  • IIBA Agile Analysis Certification (AAC)
  • IQBBA Certified Foundation Level Business Analyst (CFLBA)
  • IIBA Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP)
  • IREB Certified Professional for Requirements Engineering (CPRE)
  • PMI-Professional in Business Analysis (PBA) Certification

This kind of  Online Business Analyst Certification will assist in validating your knowledge and skills from the comfort of your home. If you are in the initial phase, it is better to go for the business analyst certification for beginners. 

2. Get Certified

Take the training knowledge to qualify and earn the Business Analysts certifications which are dominating in the job market. 

The Business Analyst Certifications you can consider approaching are:

  • IIBA Certification of Competency in Business Analysis (CCBA)
  • IIBA Entry Certificate in Business Analysis (ECBA)
  • IIBA Agile Analysis Certification (AAC)
  • IQBBA Certified Foundation Level Business Analyst (CFLBA)
  • IIBA Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP)
  • IREB Certified Professional for Requirements Engineering (CPRE)
  • PMI-Professional in Business Analysis (PBA) Certification

Certifications will help in validating your knowledge and skills.

3. Work-on real industry projects & internships

After earning the certifications, start looking for some industry-projects or internships as this will help to add to your knowledge base. Once you have the right skills and knowledge with real industry work exposure, apply that scored knowledge to fill in the full-time job applications. 

Business Analyst Training & Certification

  • No cost for a Demo Class
  • Industry Expert as your Trainer
  • Available as per your schedule
  • Customer Support Available

Final Thoughts on Why Learn Business Analyst skills!

Business Analyst is a great profile to explore and make a splendid career in, why?... Why not?

  • The pay is great
  • New jobs are cropping up every year
  • Almost every work sector needs a Business Analyst
  • BAs get the great motivation to work as they work in solace
  • And most important, the business analyst’s role is fun, challenging, and exciting at the same time

From every inch, being a Business Analyst looks like cracking a steal deal. A profile that offers a stable career and an avalanche of career options - we don’t think these all reasons are less to narrate the benefits of learning business analyst skills, getting certified, and making a solid career as a Business Analyst with leading enterprises.

Still, battling with the “learn” or “not to learn” or the “Business Analyst Skills list” question? How would a quick career counseling sound to you?

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