There are three core business analyst skills, but you have to make sure you choose the right skill depending on the type of business analyst you want to become.
That’s what I cover in this video.
LEARN.BA. In the last video I introduce the concept of a business process analyst and a business systems analyst and I talked.
A little bit about how you can decide which one of those two types of business and analyst rules are right for you. In this video I’m gonna get a little bit more specific about some of the skills that you’re going to need depending on which one of those two types of business analysis rules you choose for your own career. So if you want to be a business process analyst what I said was that you want to focus a lot more on learning process design skills so I’m going to talk a little bit more about that. If you want to be a business systems analyst. I mentioned that you want to make sure that you know ask you on this probably the core skill that you want to know. And I going to talk about a little bit more about what the systems analyst actually uses that school for. Before I get into those. The one core skill that every business analyst not needs to have regardless of whether they want to be a process analyst or a systems analyst is the ability to produce business requirements and functional specifications or software requirements specifications as harasses us at some companies call them. So. The core skill that you need to build. And if you’re just getting into the business analysis career before even focusing on process design or focusing on ask you all what you need to learn. How to do is to pick up the core business analysis skill. You cannot. Call yourself an analyst. If you do not know how to produce business requirements and specifications. Because that is the defining characteristic of an analyst. It is the ability to produce the ideas and SRS our or functions specs. So. I’ll talk more about that in a different video. But let’s get into the business process analysis skill set. Process design is a core skill set and so. What I mean by process design is not just the ability to do process mapping which is a subset of business process design. Process mapping is the ability to document business processes process design is the ability to help the company build out new business processes and so that distinction is very important because sometimes on job applications you’ll see process mapping as a skill set that they look for.
Some companies just need process mapping skills. But other companies in their in their job postings will say process mapping skills when they actually do mean process design skills and design skills are a lot more involved than just mapping. The thing that I want to get through to the point that I want to get through for unprocessed design. Is that the way you learn how to do process design has to be requirements oriented. Which means.
That your business requirements have to be infused in the process design activities that you do. And so there. If you look out on to the Internet to try to find out what kind of process design skills you need to learn you’re going to come across a whole slew of different techniques of doing process design and doing process mapping. What you need to make sure is that. Whatever methodology you choose to learn. Is not disconnected. From. Business requirements. And. If you want to know more about that you can leave a comment and I’ll elaborate on that more. But the point that you want to understand for the type of process design that you want to learn. Is to make sure. That your process design skills and your process mapping skills both incorporate business requirements into the process design. The other skill set that you want to learn as a process analyst is the ability to influence without having any authority.
As an analyst. You do not have any kind of authority to tell anybody what to do. But that’s part of your job. You have to make sure that the business process works a certain way. In order. For the whole solution to hold together. Now how do you do that. As somebody who doesn’t have any kind of authority. How do you actually go about doing that. The key to that is knowing how to influence people without having any authority. So that’s the second broad skill set that you want to focus on as a business process analyst. Business systems analyst. Skill number one as well. By far it is the single most important skill and I’ve said it many times and I’ll say it many times more. You want to learn ask you all if you want to be a BSA. Now what does the BSA use as fuel for. Because the BSA can be expected to do along a whole variety of different types of work. The two main things that the BSA uses as you are for are what I like to call data discovery. And the second one is for data migration now data discovery is a very general description. Of the sort of activities that the BSA does to figure out. What the structure what the table structure of a database looks like. And. Your ability to query a database.
Is an essential skill for you to be able to do data discovery. So for example if you’re starting to learn a new application as a BSA what you want to do is you want to understand the table structure in that application very well and the way you do that is by running a whole host of queries on different tables to figure out what kind of data is in there. And then. Somehow reverse engineering not somehow. I mean I can explain to you how to do it but trying to figure out how to reverse engineer that it back into what’s called an entity model. OK. So all of these things I’ll talk about in a lot of other videos but data discovery is the first main activity that the bee as a does using as well. Data migration is the second one. And so you need really basic skills skills to do data discovery but you need a lot more advanced skills if you want to perform data migration as a systems that. Data migration is. The set of activities that the BSA has to do to make sure that they can get data. Ported from one system and to another system. And so typically the BSA needs to perform data migration on projects where the project is replacing an existing system. What has to happen is that the data in that existing system is good and the business usually still really needs that data. They can’t just throw that out just because they have a new application. So it becomes part of the BSA job to make sure that they can take that data they can cleanse it they can transform it and fit it in to the table structure of the new system that’s being delivered. So that is what is called data migration. So. That’s well is the. Primary school that you want to learn if you want to be a BSA. Now having said all this I’m going to tie all of this back to the original point that I was trying to make that you cannot focus on as you all you cannot focus on process design if you have not yet learned. The core skill of producing business requirements. And producing functional specifications. So if you’re a business analyst and you are having a hard time trying to figure out what kind of skill set you should build first. There is no competition that there should not be a question in your mind about what that skill set is. And that skill set is the ability to produce business requirements. And specifications. So let me talk a little bit more about what business requirements are. Your role. Is usually somewhere in between the business side of the company and theI.T. side of the company. The purpose of business requirements is to express. The businesses need. In a way that I can understand. So I’ll repeat that again. The purpose of business requirements. Is to make sure that you can express the business’s real need. In a way that I can understand. And so if you think of business requirements from that angle you can start to imagine that your business requirements documents. Are in a lot of ways that kind of like a contract between the business side your company and theI.T. side of your company because essentially what the business requirements document does is it expert. It tells a team. Here’s what the business needs to be able to function properly in the future. And. Once the business signs off on the business requirements document that actually becomes like an official document in your company. And now it becomes the job ofI.T. to make sure that they can deliver to each one of those requirements that are in that document. Functional specifications are a much more detailed version of your business requirements. So many of the business folks do not understand. Much aboutI.T. So that’s why they focus a lot more on what’s called the business requirements document. The functional specification of purpose of that. Is to take those business requirements and to bring them down to an excruciating level of detail. And the reason why you need an excruciating level of detail is because. I cannot have any. They can’t play any guessing games as to what needs to be built. And so what you do within your functional specifications is you provide all of the details. ThatI.T. Needs. For them to be able to implement the business requirements that are part of the contract. Right part of the business requirements document. That’s just the general overview of what business requirements and functional specifications are. And that is what you should be focusing on. If you’re just getting started out if you’re already an analyst and you feel like you already know how to produce that you’ve got picked up that skill and you know that those skills are fairly solid. The thing you should start focusing on depending on whether you want to be a more focused BP or BSA are the skills that I talked about before you learn how to do process design and process mapping. And they learn how to influence without authority. The BSA focuses on learning as well. For a lot of the different activities that they have to perform. If you would like to learn more about business analysis. Head over to the Web site at learned IPAB.A. published a number of different articles where I talk about different subjects that are relevant to business analysis and so you can go over to the Web site and read the articles there and you can submit your questions in the comments sections if you want me to elaborate on anything that’s in the articles that have been published. But that’s a really good starting place because it starts to cover up a lot of the core issues and a lot of the core concepts that you need to understand if you want to be in that.