Here are the top 5 Business Analyst Skills that are High in Demand and that will help you succeed!
- Business Process Modelling:
One of the roles of a Business Analyst (BA) is to understand the organization’s current operational processes so as to devise improvements that enhance or incorporate into existing work. Doing this requires an understanding of business processes and the ability to visualize them. BAs frequently use tool such as Unified Modelling Language (UML) and Business Process Modelling Notation (BPMN). Representing complex processes helps uncover opportunities for improvement and prevent problem that can be foreseen.
- Data Extraction (SQL – Structured Query Language):
A BA is also frequently required to work with data. but can only analyze data once data is extracted. This data extraction is usually performed through the use of SQL. SQL is a programming language used specifically to extract structured data from relational databases. New systems store data in structured as well as unstructured formats. Hence it may be helpful for a BA to be conversant in such systems as MongoDB, Cassandra, Google BigTable, HBase, etc.
- Requirements Gathering:
We’ve discussed in the earlier post that a BA is an agent of change. Transforming an organization or its component(s) requires that the BA understand exactly what is needed to be accomplished to achieve this change. BAs on their own seldom define the future state of the organization, process or component. A BA usually attempts to elicit these change requirements from senior stakeholders, managers, SMEs and engineers. Once elicited, these are documented which may take the form of:
– Business requirements.
– Functional requirements.
– System requirements.
– Technical requirements.
– Test requirements, etc.
Join our BA experience simulator and work as a BA in team to develop skills in:
- Requirements documentation
- MS Excel
- and much more!
- Testing and Quality Assurance (QA):
While teams exist to test and evaluate the creations, deliverables as a result of the changes initiated, the BA is the person with the most intimate understanding of what these changes should look like. Hence, it is not uncommon for BAs to be part of testing teams. Their involvement and approval that the end result is indeed what was expected is of great solace to the organization. BAs may be required to create and / or review documentation such as test plans, test cases and test scripts.
- Documentation, Reporting and Presentation:
Performing these involves documenting requirements, use cases, modelling diagrams, developing progress and closure reports, plans, and various presentations of analysis details. A BA skilled in MS Excel and Tableau is equipped to make convincing, informative and interactive documentation and presentations that communicate and impress.
General Business Analyst Skills
In addition to the specific skills needed to excel as a business analyst, general business skills are a pre-requisite to any role in a global business environment.
- Written and Verbal Communication
Communication as a skill is needed in any high-functioning job profile. However, since the job of an analyst is to analyze the business, the results have to be communicated to the people in higher authority. Out of all skills for business analysts, communication holds the biggest ground.
- Observation and Listening Skills
Listening skills are one of the key cornerstones of becoming a good business analyst. A good business analyst listens to and absorbs information. This helps the analyst to analyze the information thoroughly so that they can specify the requirements. Also, it’s important that the listener not only understands what is being said but also the context behind it, such as the objective, the main motivation and the circumstances for which it is being said. The business analyst should ideally observe the voice, the tone and the body language of the speaker to understand the message clearly.
- Being able to Run Meetings with Stakeholders
Using email to communicate effectively and professionally with a client has been a standard protocol until now. However, at times, it is not the most effective way. Therefore, discussing issues with the client face to face can work wonders and even help in solving issues pretty quickly. In fact, many times executives will know better about a project or an issue due to a simple reason that people are more open in their interactions with the other party. However, if an audit trail is a necessity, the business analyst can always set up a meeting with the client through a written confirmation.