What Does A Business Analyst Actually Do?

For the sake of the CHED course on business analytics, lets look a little more closely at business analysts.

The International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA) describes the role as “a liaison among stakeholders in order to understand the structure, policies, and operations of an organization, and to recommend solutions that enable the organization to achieve its goals.”

With that in mind, the next question often asked is, “What does a business analyst do?”

This is a reasonable question, because the fact is a business analyst is not limited to doing one thing. He or she wears multiple hats. He or she will be skilled in communication, negotiation, listening, and will also need to be a good team leader. They have to be good at solving problems. This means he or she will have the skills necessary to look at data and other relevant information in order to determine where the losses are within a company. They also have to understand the technology used to capture, store and analyze the data used in their company. It takes a lot to be a good business analyst.

This is where things like deep thinking and curiosity really separate good analysts from great analysts. Of the many  essential skills a business analyst will utilize here are my top 3:

(1) – Know the data. They will compare the past facts and figures to the current numbers, this will give the analyst the information to deduce or predict failure within the company.

(2) – Know the business – A business analyst is always an objective listener. They will determine the needs that management want by speaking to shareholders. This requires the analyst to ask questions, to find out what is needed, which will more than likely lead to new discoveries that may have been overlooked previously.

(3) – Know the players – Within a business there are usually different departments. A Business analyst will seek to associate and involve them-self with the various departments. This will help them identify conflicts within the various departments, which can be used to bring departments together.

As you can see it takes a lot to be a business analyst. BAs are truly a rare breed of technology loving people, who can solve problems and work well with others.

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