Technology skills and experience help build better BAs

I am writing this piece based on my experience of 15 years working on private and public sector IT projects, including as an e-learning Business Analyst for the past seven of those.

My formal qualifications for BA work start and end with passing the BCS’s Foundation Certificate In Business Analysis, study for which provides a good theoretical foundation in skills specific to the professional business analyst ranging from strategy, through requirements gathering and analysis  all the way to systems and data modelling.

Aside from these specific business analysis skills, the best BAs in my view have actively sought opportunities to:

  • practice coding in a high level language be that C++, Java (or even simple HTML!)
  • understand one or more relational database systems (e.g. MS SQL Server, Oracle or MySQL) as well as possess an adequate grasp of the SQL commands needed to retrieve data.
  • understand the basics of IT Networks and communications infrastructure through familiarity with common terms like server, router, IP address and load balancing.

Through taking the trouble and effort to acquire this knowledge and experience, be that through prior technical project work e.g. as a programmer or network analyst or self-tuition, the BA will heighten their credibility and respect amongst their organisation’s developer community. 

The empathy the BA feels for their developers’ work can be harnessed to motivate those developers to deliver the solutions the customer really needs and should rightly expect for their money!

About the author

Eur Ing Julian Nicholas Guy Fletcher MEng (Hons) MSc CITP CEngEur Ing Julian Nicholas Guy Fletcher MEng (Hons) MSc CITP CEng

e-Learning Business Analyst and Director of FBASL (Fletcher Business Analysis Services Ltd.) Julian set up FBASL to promote the application of business analysis skills to ensure that learning technology is used by organisations in such a way that it motivates employees to increase the value of their contribution to both their companies and symbiotically their own personal career success and satisfaction.

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