What is a Business Analyst?
Many of the companies tend to neglect the importance of good business analysts, they sometimes miss out on the business opportunities a business analyst may bring with them. Good business analysts are the need of this time for any business to grow in multiple folds. They are the one who understands any business situation and breaks them into manageable pieces for the team. They can share the effective information and are able to guide easily to the team about the process and the final expected result. For a project manager handling multiple projects, with additional information on budgets, reports, and deadlines may be overwhelming, it is here when a business analyst becomes highly effective to deliver the result. They provide a back support to project managers and their team.
Business analysts keep the communication channels open between stakeholders and the team, understanding the requirements of both parties, managing their challenges and requirements.
What to Look For When Hiring a Business Analyst?
1. Experienced in similar roles:
To be an analyst, it is good to have some prior experience in the same domain or in similar job role, where one requires understanding the business and how it functions. Because to analyze the benefits and traits for a business to grow, it is important to pay attention to the opportunities available. The previously held knowledge and business understanding are helpful in the difficult situations or when a tough decision is to be made. The business analyst will then have a clear knowledge and understanding of analysis, creating good visual models, effective use of business tools and will be able to organize the business sessions.
2. Highly resourceful:
In any form of business, tough situations are always there, the important effective factor is to be able to manage and handle these situations. A good business analyst is highly resourceful and knows how to find the best possible solution or an alternative path during the difficult times. They take up any kind of challenging work and are able to see past through them, understanding to capture the best opportunities during the time of trouble. They know how to connect businesses for the benefit of the organization, capability of finding the opportunities to stay ahead of their competitors. Business analysts are those who are difficult to get stopped by any problems and can pull through difficult issues.
3. Highly analytical:
As it is already in the name of business analyst, they are to be highly analytical situation. They equipped with various skills, which can be used in every troubled situation. They need to have a strong mind for analysis, through various graphs or data that has been shared, by understanding the competition they are working against, or even by interacting with the people within the organization. The business analyst needs to have the capability to see the best possible opportunities. Sometimes best business ideas can come from something very simple and mundane, hence, a business analyst is the one who can easily analyze the situation no matter how small or irrelevant it can be.
4. Good communication skills:
A business analyst is the one who needs to talk to the people most of the time. They are a communication channel between stakeholders and the team working on it. Therefore, it is essential for them to get a better idea of the brief and ask relevant and prompt questions to the stakeholders. While on the other hand, they should be able to share the brief with their team and ready to answer their queries promptly. All of this makes it important for a business analyst to be very good in their communication skills. They are the source of information and they are the ones who need to convince both the sides with the appropriate work deadline. It is their communication skills that make the life and job easier for everyone and they have the power to convince stakeholders for a good opportunity that they can see one.
5. Highly engaging:
Convincing stakeholders to work with a business analyst while making it be a top priority work is something which is generally not easy to do but is highly important. A business analyst needs to convince and cajole the stakeholders to work with them, they need to ensure that the stakeholders agree with their points on which they both will be working together. An engaging business analyst is an asset to any organization because they then have an inherent understanding of bringing everyone together for a single project without any difficulties. They will then easily communicate the value and importance a certain project hold, without having to talk too much or put unnecessary effort for it. Being highly engaging with the stakeholders requires immense passion about the work and the assigned project, as this will play a key role in getting the job done easily.
6. Clarity in thought and vision:
A good business analysts have a good clarity in their thoughts and knows what needs to be done. As they are the ones who carry the immense amount of information with them, they know which information to be shared when and what are the requisites for a certain project. They have a clear vision of their goals that they intend to achieve, when a project is to be done. Being clear in their ideas gives them a better approach to the team to do their jobs better, explain the stakeholders about certain issues if they come in between and convince their senior management the importance of things that may become a priority later. Therefore, these are the skills which are highly important to be a really good and effective business analyst.
Traits and Attributes Of A Great Business Analyst:
1. Project management skills:
A good business analyst is not necessarily a project manager but does possess the skills of a project manager. It is important for them to have certain skills to get going and move a project ahead. They are highly dedicated and goal oriented, they know when the stakeholders need to get involved in the project, they are highly committed to their work and are self-driven. More importantly, they know when the opportunity arises and when to get that one. They always keep their eye on the problems that may arise and well it can be tackled, they understand the value and timing of delivering the results effectively.
2. Detail oriented:
To other members of the organization, business analysts jobs may seem as highly irritating or pestering because they know the importance of their job and the amount of persistence it requires to get it done. They are the ones who never give up easily or back out from a situation. They ask too many questions to collect the immense amount of data, they need to know the most about everything that is going on in the outside world and within their office. It is this quality of theirs that makes capable to collect the immense amount of information and retain it. They need to be precise and attentive to the finer details, while presenting their ideas and concepts. They nee to create a solid plan to be put in action for a work to begin because they understand the amount of information it will need to be shared when a project will be in progress.
3. Steady natured:
Having a steady nature is the best business analyst skills. Interacting with so many stakeholders at once, extremely tight schedules and deadlines to deliver the project, taking calls and emails continuously, answering questions and queries too at the same time, makes a very stressful life of a business analyst. To be a good business analyst, begin highly steady and having a lot of patience is highly required. With so much going on at a time, the chances of having a frayed nerve goes high but the true skill of a business analyst process lies here who is happy and comfortable handling all these situations at the same time. The are able to have the understanding to switch their priorities and can make decisions back and forth being on their toes. It is important to understand for a business analyst, that all these problems and issues are part of the job and they should be dealt with patience, one does not need to be frantic about it. Understanding that there are chances of delays, issues coming up during the time of delivering the project is, all part of the process.
4. Multidisciplinary knowledge:
For a good business analyst, it is important to have knowledge from various fields and domains rather than working in the just domain. Because multidisciplinary knowledge comes very handy for a business analyst who knows then how to tackle any situation at any given point of time. Business analysts who have worked across various industries develop the knack of capturing the information and tend to make better relations with the stakeholders. They are more versatile in their knowledge and skills and are also open to newer ideas that come across them. They then do not believe in depending on only one source of information or analytical tools, they know alternative resources and generate multiple ideas to solve a problem, this all comes handy because of their past work experiences.
5. Strategic thinker:
Good business analyst is the ones who can develop strategic plans and put them into actions. They understand that finding the right opportunity is not an easy task and when once they find one, it requires good planning to make it to good use. Business analysts know to convince the stakeholders to understand the importance of the work and their projects, chances are that there two or more projects may overlap each other. Because they know the opportunity to get something more out of simple things may not come again. Business analyst hardly gets a chance to take action or make major decisions on their own but they do develop a full proof argument with facts and figures to convince their superiors to get the project on the roll.
6. Highly inquisitive:
Another important attribute of a business analyst is to keep asking questions because they know that they will not find the right answer in the first attempt. They need to consistently ask questions from their stakeholders like, why, how, when, what, who. Asking questions is a way for a business analyst to develop a better understanding of the brief, the process for the path that can be taken to deliver the result and what is the expected result. All these are essential pointers to be noted while working in collaboration with the stakeholders. Asking right and relevant questions is an important asset for a successful business analyst, they are the ones who need this information to deliver the best of the result.
Business Analyst Salary:
The popularity of the job role of business analyst has taken over the years, many organizations have now been able to understand the value and importance of a business analyst within their firms. Therefore, one can see them across various domains of the industry. The salary of business analyst mainly depends on their educational qualification and experience they have. The overall salary average of a business analyst lies between $45,000 to $110,000, but many of them after working for years in a job tend to move on to higher job roles in the company.
It is good to consider the importance of business analyst within an organization and not to neglect the benefits they can bring in the growth of the organization. Their capability and skills to take over various projects make them an asset to the organization. Many companies do have a difficult time to find the right and effective business analysts, sometimes there may be a confusion to understanding the separate job roles which are held by a project manager and a business analyst. Many project managers have held positions as an analyst but it is good to pay attention to the amount of analysis that can be done by them alone. The business analyst is a back support for any organization because they provide the right information and creates an easier channel for the team to work on.