Top Tips to Find a Great Business Analyst
8 January 2015 at 8:40 am
With changes in legislation, pressure from the commercial sector and expanding demands from the community sector, Not for Profits are coming under intense pressure to review and renew their organisational processes and frameworks, writes project management expert Ed Jeffers.
Regardless of whether it is compliance, governance or best practice issues they usually take on the form of a project and in many cases of significant scale. These projects require experienced Business Analyst or better known in the industry as a “BA”.
First is to understand what a BA is and what they can do for your organisation.
A BA is someone who analyses an organisation or business domain (real or hypothetical) and documents its business or processes or systems, assessing the business model or its integration with technology or other business processes.
These resources can be hard to find and for Not for Profits, part of the challenge is knowing what to look for and what questions to ask. These uniquely talented professionals can be a bit hard to find and sometimes difficult to gage their skill sets and how they will affect the outcome of a particular project. This is a critical function of any project big or small and these skills should be brought on board as early in the piece as possible.
In many cases the BA will be the person responsible along with the project manager to create the scope, resources, and framework of a project.
One of the first questions that comes to a hiring manager's mind when faced with a fresh project do I need a business analyst and if so what do I need to consider.
When your business is stuck in a rut, hiring an experienced senior BA can be the key to identifying and eliminating any roadblocks.
You should take care when making such an investment, to ensure you choose a professional who will get it right the first time.
1. They think strategically
The best business analysts always have the wider strategy of the organisation in mind, and make sure every single action they take has the purpose of serving it in some way.
By taking a holistic view of the project at all times, the best analysts can map out the path ahead and envision the steps the organisation needs to take.
2. They have excellent communication and people skills
Great interpersonal skills are a must for practically any profession, but are especially important in the field of business analysis.
A great business analyst knows how to sum up their findings and communicate them to every stakeholder who has an interest in the organisation.
3. They have a wealth of experience, but are willing to learn
It goes without saying that you'll need a business analyst who's been in the game for a while and knows what they're doing, through having completed a number of high-profile projects.
While extensive expertise and self-sufficiency are key, business analysts must also be open-minded and willing to learn new skills and take on fresh perspectives if they perceive it will be of benefit to the organisation.
4. They have a credible track record
According to CIO.com, the best business analysts will have gained credibility among their peers through their success in previous work experience.
About the author: Ed Jeffers is the founder and Managing Director of the EDGE Plus Network which is the largest networks of Project Managers and Project Practitioners in Australia with over 1100+ members. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 0404 835 176.