business analyst job description
Business Analysts typically work in an office setting, in a cubicle or personal office, using a computer. This is normally a 9 to 5, Monday through Friday position, but more time can be required to meet deadlines. A variety of businesses and industries use the skills of a Business Analyst.
This position generally reports to senior-level management such as a department manager or vice president, but this can vary by company.
The duties of a Business Analyst are varied. They analyze an organization's business or IT systems and data, and recommend changes to increase the overall efficiency and effectiveness of a department or an entire company. This includes identifying the need for change, assessing the impact of changes, documenting the change requirements and ensuring the changes occur, and creating tangible benefits to the organization. Business Analysts are problem solvers, excellent communicators, and tactful diplomats who can quickly understand and respond to the needs of people within the company.
After about five years of experience, Business Analysts can move upwards into roles including senior/lead business analyst, and product manager. With eight to ten years of experience, your career path can include advanced positions, such as chief technology officer or chief information officer. You could also take on work as a consultant.
A strong business background or extensive IT knowledge are critical for a Business Analyst. Continuing education is also important for success, as are the traits of critical thinking, problem solving, curiosity and communication. The right combination of experience, skills and education can allow you many different options.
required skills and training
Some employers will require at least an undergraduate degree for this position, while others may accept certification-level training through a college or online course. A Master's Degree in Business Analysis can get you further than candidates without it.
Requirements can vary by company, but some candidates can be hired just out of college, or with one or two years of work experience related to the Business Analyst role. More experience will land you in a higher-level position with more responsibility.
Skills and Certifications:
You can expand your career options by becoming a Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) given by the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA). Studies show that this certification can increase your salary by about 16 percent.
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