For you to become a successful Business Analyst, there are certain Business analyst skills and competencies that you must possess
Are you curious to know more about who a business analyst is, their occupations and the necessary skills and competencies they should have?
This post will help you achieve just that while we explore other related areas that revolve around the Profession and Career of a Business analyst.
But before I go into that content, I want you to know and understand who a business analyst really is, as they are certain speculations and misinterpretation of this noble profession.
Who is a Business Analyst?
A business analyst is a person who analyzes and enables change in an organization and documents its processes, bringing out the needs and recommends solutions that deliver values to stakeholders.
Now talking about skills and competencies, a business analyst must possess core skills, general skills, soft skills, and skills required for all specific types of Business analyst processes.
What core skills should a business analyst have?
For all business analysts, these skills are the most relevant skills you should possess. If being a business analyst is a good career choice for you then it is important for you to note these skills.
1. Communication skills
Firstly and most importantly, the business analyst must be good communicators. That is, they must know how to speak fluently, ask questions, listen attentively to answers given, and take in what is been said.
In today’s world communication does not necessarily mean you must see face to face Communication covers writing, speaking, presenting and documenting
As a business analyst, you must know how to organize a conference call or even web meetings. The most important thing in your occupation is information
Knowing and having good communication skill will help you tremendously in your career.
2. Problem-solving skills
All projects must encounter problems one way or the other. That is when a business analyst steps in to solve the problems and give possible solutions to it.
A good business analyst must know how to facilitate a team in solving technical challenges. Developing a solution to problems must be a top priority.
3. Negotiating skills
Business analysts are seen as intermediaries with a variety of people with different types of personalities. A
s a business analyst, you must be able to achieve results for your company and also finds solutions to clients to make them happy, thereby maintaining a healthy relationship between clients and companies.
4. Critical thinking skills
A business analyst must have the ability to make multiple options before guiding a team to a solution. They must ask questions, listens to what stakeholders want, understands it before solving an issue.
This is what makes them critical in their thinking.
These core skills: communication skills, negotiating skills, problem-solving skills, and critical thinking skills are not all that a business analyst should possess.
There are some other attributes a good BA should have. Business Analysts should possess these general skills.
5. Interpersonal skills
Business analysts must have the ability to work in environments with different teams. Must learn how to adapt fast in new environments, must be creative, pay attention to details and must be analytical in their thinking.
The business analyst must know how to influence people and must be very intelligent.
6. Computer skills
it is very important for business analysts to know and use all the necessary software needed in their occupation and be aware of new developments in IT too.
7. Analytical skills
As I said earlier, business analysts must be logical in reasoning. They must know when to act and how to act. Strong analytical skills are required to be successful in the business analyst profession.
Apart from the core skills, general skills, we also have soft skills. These are the skills that may not be in you naturally, and you need to improve on them.
8. Managerial skills
Most people will say business analysts are not managers, I agree with that but the most successful business analysts manage the business analysis efforts.
This means BA are in control and are aware of situations. All business analysts should have the ability to manage projects, plan project scoops, direct staffs and supervise projects of all sizes.
9. Relationship building skills
The most important soft skill is the ability to have a good relationship with stakeholders. You will often work with stakeholders and creating a strong bond with them will help your career.
Skills required for specific business analyst jobs
Aside from the other skills mentioned above, here are some skills business analysts should have for their jobs.
For a business analyst to succeed, he/she must know and understand the tendencies in technology. This will help you communicate well with technical stakeholders.
Methodology skills: Also, a business analyst role can be unique if it follows a specific methodology.
Now I know you have taken note of the skills a business analyst should have.
Business analysts play major roles in organizations worldwide.
Let’s talk about business analyst competencies.
Business analyst competencies describe how a business analyst should behave, his/her level of knowledge and personal qualities.
Below is the list of competencies a business analyst should possess.
- Eliciting Requirements: A particular role of a business analyst is to elicit and document user requirements. These requirements may vary, it can be functionalities, conditions, services for internal or external use. They spend time compiling requirements not because they love to do so but because they want to help organizations understand their problems before bringing in possible solutions.
- Creating the business requirement documents: Creating this business requirement document is the aim of a business analyst to enable the working conditions of a company. A business requirement document is a well-written document that details the solution of a project and provides insight on how a business area should look like. This business requirement documents must be reviewed by a business analyst before and after the work is done
- Structured Analysis: This can also be referred to as the act of modeling. Modeling in business analysis is used to help identify and validate requirements, enhance text-based requirements, document requirements and organize information into logical ideas. Junior business analysts should be able to create simple models based on information giving to them by their senior counterparts and should be able to identify different types of modeling techniques when modeling.
- Testing: Testing can be applicable to varieties of works. It is the duty of a business analyst to test the products to know if the requirements have been met.
- IT fluency: A good business analyst should have an overall understanding of IT. Must know how to use softwares and techniques.
What are the qualities needed to be a good business analyst?
What makes a business analyst from been good to great? Education, skill and computer knowledge is not enough to be a great business analyst.
Consider yourself to be a business owner, do you wish to work with a person who stumbles with words or even afraid to look you in the eyes when there’s a meeting?
No will definitely be your answer but if a business analyst with good knowledge of how to use softwares, plus a good education and combine it with good qualities, his/her career will definitely be booming.
Here is a list of qualities a business analyst should have
- Impressive communication: Business analysts should be skilled communicators. Communication skills are not an option for Business analysts it is a necessity.
- Facilitation skills: It is ideal for a business analyst to possess this quality. Business analysts are required to facilitate meetings and sessions during projects.
- Experienced critical thinker: All business analysts should be critical in their thinking. They must know how to evaluate multiple options before helping a team settle on a solution.
- Skilled with PM and organizational tools: A good knowledge and use of project management related tools like project schedule software tool, risk management software, file management software, bug trafficking software etc. Basic tools like Microsoft word, power point and excel and others that might be needed.
- Must know how to resolve conflicts: At times disagreements between team members and company staffs may arise. It is your duty to resolve the conflicts.
Responsibilities of a Business Analyst
- They are responsible for assessing business processes, provides requirements, uncover areas of improvement, develop and implement solutions.
- They develop optimization strategies.
- Must know the latest IT developments.
- Organizing meetings and presentations to share ideas.
- Gathering of critical information from meetings with different stakeholders and bringing useful reports.
- Should work closely with clients, technicians and managerial staffs.
- They are responsible for distributing resources and maintaining cost- efficiency.
- Also responsible for training, coaching, leading and guiding junior staffs.
- They make sure solutions meet business wants and requirements.
- They are serving as a connection between stakeholders and users.
What are the necessary requirements needed to become a Business Analyst?
- A Bachelor’s degree in Business or any business related field.
- Five years of experience in business analysis
- The ability to influence and work closely with stakeholders to determine a possible solution.
- Perfect documentation skills
- Good technical skills
- Extraordinary analytical and conceptual thinking skills
- Experience in creating good reports and giving presentations
- Ability in handling Microsoft applications including outlook, word and excel.
- Perfect planning, organizational and time management skills.
- A past record of leading and successful projects
- Experience in leading and improving top performing teams
- A track record following through on commitments
Tools a business analyst should use
Below is the list of tools a business analyst should make use of
This is a leading business analysis tool. It defines requirements texturally and visually. It supports diagramming, smart Docs, baselines, trace analysis and other eliciting tools.
Swot is widely used by several business analysts.
It is a secure and easy to use tool.
This tool generates graph and chats from spreadsheets, have extensive templates and shapes for all business analysis models.
Cacoo can manage team access with project folders and permission levels easily.
A good tool for a business analyst to use.
The Axure tool has the capability to produce wireframes, prototypes and creates documentation.
It also helps to create and maintain widget libraries.
5. Fluid UI
This tool is very easy to use and can be used by new entrepreneurs, managers, and product visionaries.
A very smart photo typing tool that focuses on simplicity and communication.
6. Trace specs
This business analysis tool makes it easier for users to manage projects with complete traceability.
Click on the link to see other features.
When talking about a fast and stable software, Bitmpulse got you covered.
It can automatically send reports through email.
This tool offers working visualization software.
It allows managing users to gain critical insights about a project.
The aim of this software is to provide solutions across industries.
Good software to be used by business analysts.
This tool helps business analysts plan, track and report on work.
With JIRA Core you can see easily see the project’s status without even emailing or set up.
11. Meeting sense
With this software, you get easy online team collaboration.
Companies can maximize their ROI for reducing meeting time and use of the technology.
This software easily converts textual requirements to easy-to-understand diagrams.
With this kind of software, business owners can understand requirements without the need to read too many documents.
13. Version one
This tool is also important for a Business analyst to take note of.
It has many features click on the link to read more.
This work time management tool helps business analyst with their work.
It keeps track of the time spent by team members for good planning and budget management.
A wireframing tool that helps business to work fast and smooth.
Business analysts should take note of this tool.
Question and Answer Session
What role does a business analyst play in an organization?
Business analysts play an important role in an organization. They help businesses plan technology solutions in a cost productive way by establishing the necessary requirements of a project and exchanging the information with stakeholders, facilitators, and partners.
Summary: Business Analyst skills and competencies
I hope this article business analyst skills and competencies will enable you to understand more about the profession of a business analyst
A business analyst is not a leader of a project but his skills, roles may go a long way to make a project succeed
They perform a crucial role in the development of an organization.
Do you want to start a new career in this profession then read through this article and understand more about the Business Analyst profession.