What Does a Business Analyst Do?

Business Analyst shown working

Business Analysts Overview

Business Analysts (BA) are becoming more popular throughout several industries as businesses seek to grow and change while meeting their customer's needs. Many organizations hire these individuals to solve problems, set new objectives, and achieve desired results. Here is some crucial information about BAs that may assist you with the decision to hire these professionals for your business analysis needs.

The critical role a BA plays when analyzing a business is requirements management. The modern business environment is complex, and the BAs purpose is to maintain requirements through constant change by using innovation to do so. That means their role is to develop technical solutions to problems in a business or to further a company's sales revenue by defining, documenting, and analyzing requirements.

Here are some additional stats for the Business Analyst role:

  1. According to Forrester Research, more than $100 billion is spent annually in the U.S. on custom and internally developed software projects. (en.wikipedia.org)
  2. Employment of management analysts is projected to grow 14 percent from 2018 to 2028, much faster than the average for all occupations. (bls.gov)
  3. The average salary for an IT business analyst is $67,762 per year, according to data from PayScale. (cio.com)

Skills and Responsibilities

  • Technical skills include data modeling and knowledge of IT.
  • BAs must analyze large amounts of data and other business processes to form ideas and fix problems.
  • Must communicate their ideas in an expressive way 
  • BA’s primary responsibility to come up with solutions to an organization’s problems.
  • Research skills about new processes and software to present effective results.
  • Analyzing and evaluating the current business processes and identifying areas of improvement
  • Researching and reviewing up-to-date business processes and new IT advancements to make systems more modern
  • Training and coaching members of Staff
  • Creating initiatives depending on the business’s requirements and needs
  • Developing projects and monitoring performance

Client Interview Questions

  • How do you define the role of BA?
  • Describe how you would approach a project timeline?
  • How will you handle changing requirements and prioritize them?
  • Tell me about some projects that you have enjoyed.
  • What business intelligence tools have you used in the past?
  • What technical competencies do you have ex: reporting, languages, applications?
  • What methodologies do you use today?
  • Tell me about your documentation skills?
  • What kind of experience do you have dealing with Senior Executive levels? Technical levels?

BA’s consult with the company's management and develop a plan to make any changes to the company’s needs. Many BA’s work on a contract basis. Being a BA is a lot of work, but it can be enriching, challenging, and stimulating. If you like working in a fast-paced environment, this might be the job for you. Possible questions you might want to ask in an interview to make sure this is the right company to work for might be the following:

Applicant Questions

  • What type of business metrics does your company use today?
  • What is the most significant business challenge your company is facing today?
  • What is the current business model of your company?
  • What are your company’s strengths, weaknesses?
  • What characteristics did you like or dislike about your last BA?
  • Where do you see this company in three years? Five years?
  • What is my main objective should you hire me?