How To Become A Business Analyst Without Experience?

Do you want to become a business analyst but sadly you do not have experience in this job field? Do you want to become a business analyst but don’t know about the prerequisite or what it takes to become a business analyst? Don’t worry, In this article, we will see the simple steps to become a business analyst with no experience.

So, how to become a business analyst with no experience? This is a very commonly asked question from the people who wish to become a business analyst or transition their careers to the business analysis profession. Don’t be frustrated, there should a start for every profession with or without any experience.

How To Become A Business Analyst Without Experience?

I got into the business analysis profession without any prior experience in the Business Analyst profession. I was into a support project in a healthcare domain. I was doing well in that profile but one day my manager came to me asked about the new opportunity i.e. where they needed a subject matter expert.

That opportunity was about gathering the requirements from the business, preparing requirement documentations, getting stakeholder approvals, and other functions that are related to the business analysis profession. Then, very soon I got many projects to handle and my role changed from what I was doing to the business analyst.

There are many professional out there who wants to transition their career into the business analysis but it scares them to apply for this position in the same company or different because of lack of knowledge. Therefore, let checklist down the key things you must know before jumping into the business analysis profession.

Key Things To Do To Become a Business Analyst With No Experience

Following is the list of activities that you should do from today onward to become a business analyst in the future. You can try practicing in your current roles and prepare yourself for your career transition into the business analyst.

1. Learn Business Processes

You might be working in a specific module of a project but you should break your comfort zone and try to learn about the end to end process of your project. You can reach out to the different team members with a set of questions to clear your doubts.

You can try drawing the process on tools like Microsoft Visio or any other software used in your organization. You can get help from the business analyst working in your project as well. When you draw the process on a tool or a paper, you learn in detail and most importantly remember.

This will help not only in the current project you are working in but also during the interview for the next business analyst job.

You can refer BABOK (Business Analysis Body of Knowledge).

2. Get Domain Knowledge

Learning about the domain you are working in or interested to work in is very important. A business analyst should know all about the domain and end to end processes. If you are working in Banking, Insurance, Finance, Healthcare, etc. try to focus on learning every process involved and how it intersects with each other.

Once you know about the domain, you become an SME i.e. subject matter expert. This will help you while drafting a solution for the client, requirement elicitation, problem-solving, and in many more project-related activities.

3. Get Familiar With The Key Software

Business analysts use many software to manage their work. This software is required for project planning, preparing use cases, system prototyping, wire-frame, creating and managing user stories, etc. You can learn about the following commonly used software;

  • Microsoft Vision – for creating diagrams, use cases, workflows, etc
  • Microsoft Projects – for creating project plans
  • JIRA – for creating user stories in agile projects

However, companies also use the enterprise software like rational rose to create UML i.e. unified modeling diagrams. You should check with your manager about the software being used and get the access to learn them better. You can sign up for the trial version of the software and get hands-on if you don’t have Software access in your company.

4. Learn Data Analysis

Data Analysis is very important in must to have skill in a business analyst. Data analysis will be required during the project initiation, impact analysis, and almost every phase of the project. Therefore, you should focus on learning from today onward.

You can start with Microsoft excel for the same and practice data visualization with the help of pivot, charts, etc. The more you practice, the more tricks and methods you learn. Go through the project reports being shared by your managers or the leads and try to see, how they are representing the numbers.

5. Get Familiar With Glossaries

Business Analysts should also get themselves families with the terminologies being used in the project and the domain. This helps a lot while communicating with stakeholders. You should have access to these glossaries from the project documents.

Knowing the glossaries will help in relating what stakeholders or business users are trying to say quickly.

6. Improve Your Communication Skills

Communication is key in a business analyst profession. If you have all the other skills but not good with communication then it would be very difficult for you. Every good business analyst will have good communication skills and attention to detail.

You need good communication skills to lead the meetings with stakeholders and teams. You should not hesitate to ask questions during the meetings.

You shouldn’t limit your communication skills to the verbal, your written communication should also be strong. A business analyst should be able to communicate the message and a simple and clear way. Most of the projects fail to deliver because of a lack of communication or poor communication.

One way communication is not helpful, therefore, makes a habit of follow up and asking confirmation. These small-small activities help and guarantees the project success in the future.

7. Don’t Underestimate The Power Of Documentation

A business analyst roles and responsibilities roam around the proper documentation i.e. requirement, process diagram, use cases, etc. You should review the current document templates being used and how it is used to prepare the project documents.

  1. A first draft version of the document is created
  2. Then, it is reviewed by the peer team member
  3. Next, it is being shared with business users or stakeholders to review and approve.
  4. If no further changes required and approved by the business users then it is considered as baseline.

There is a term called document versioning that is used to track the changes in the project documents over the period. Therefore, you should learn about the document versioning as well to know the process better. The document should capture detailed requirements therefore, a business analyst should give attention to details while requirement elicitation process.

Read Also.. Is Business Analyst Job Boring? Real Truth

Other Ways To Start Your Career As A Business Analyst Without Experience

If you find the above steps difficult or simply not feasible in your organization, you can go the following ways to get started in the Business Analysis profession.

Internship Opportunity

Look for the internship opportunity that allows you to practice business analysis activities. It is a good option for someone who just pass-out form the college and trying to build their career in the business analyst profession.

You might get low pay but you will learn so much about business analysis jobs, their roles, and responsibilities, etc. Also, this will add value to your resume and the experience will help you in cracking the interview for the business analyst position.

Job Shadowing

In job shadowing, you get the opportunity to work with business analysts however, you need to manage your work as well. This is only possible if your manager allows you to do so.

By doing the job shadowing of a business analyst you will gain experience of the role of a business analyst, and gain an insight into that particular work area.

Apart from all these, one can also go for an entry-level certification for the business analyst. This will not only help you in learning business analysis but also help you in cracking the business analyst interview.

Read Also.. Essential Roles and Responsibilities of a Business Analyst

Certification For A Entry Level Business Analyst

International Institute of Business Analysis offers the ECBA i.e. Entry Certification in Business Analysis. You can register on the IIBA site to become a member. Being an IIBA member, you get a discount on any further certification is offered by this organization.

Read Also… Top 6 Best Business Analyst Certifications For You

You don’t need experience in business analysis to apply for the ECBA certification. However, you need to complete a minimum of 21 Professional Development (PD) hours within the last four years.

The following are the fee details for ECBA i.e. Entry Certification in Business Analysis certification from the International Institute of Business Analysis.

Application FeeExam Fee (Member)Exam Fee (Non-Member)
$60$110$235

You shouldn’t go for high-level business analyst certification like CBAP i.e. Certified Business Analyst Professional unless you have enough experience. This will make your situation worse in the interview process because the interviewer will have senior-level expectations from you.

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Conclusion

Getting into the business analysis profession without any experience could be challenging at the beginning but if you focus on learning what it takes to become a business analyst, you can become one.

You just need to take the first step towards your goal.

Be patient, you will get more and more opportunities down the line when people start recognizing your potential and quality of work you are delivering.

Now you know how can you prepare for yourself to becomes a business analyst without any experience. You know the entry-level business analyst certification you can go to to learn business analysis techniques in detail and to crack the BA interview.

Hope you find this article useful and helped in our career growth. Please consider sharing with your friends.

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