How to Become a Business Analyst

Business Analyst

Business analysts work across many industries, diving deep into a certain business’s performance and giving them reports about how they can improve using technology. Becoming a business analyst means using data to provide plans about how to revamp the company.

Business analysts quite simply consider the successes and downfalls of their particular business, and work out an action plan for improving it using technology. They work with data and technology teams to gather all of the information, and then act as the mediator between them and the rest of the company. They are responsible for aligning a business’s needs with the capabilities of technology. 

A business analyst’s job will entail skills like: 

  • Getting to grips with the company’s individual data needs
  • Analysing niche areas of the business
  • Documenting findings in reports, and effectively ‘translating’ the data into everyday language
  • Reaching conclusions about how the business can be improved
  • Presenting these insights to other employees

People skills are essential for business analysts, as they will need to make presentations persuading businesses to make changes. However, candidates will also need to be able to work with technology professionals who are big on numbers and jargon; so it is really important to be flexible and able to alter a message to suit multiple groups. This position requires creativity and creativity, which should be demonstrated in a business analyst’s work application.

To become a business analyst, having a degree in relevant topics spanning from computer science to business management is hugely beneficial. A masters’ degree will further set a candidate in good stead to getting a business analyst job, but vocational experience is arguably more important. Graduates should make sure that they have a solid background of experience in similar fields and the industry that they will be working in. Non-graduates with a lot of experience and enterprise can work their way up the career ladder to become a business analyst.

What degree is most commonly held by a Business Analyst?

  • BSc Computer Science
  • BSc Business Analytics
  • BSc Business and Management
  • MSc Business Analytics
  • MBA

Common Certifications

  • CBIP

Career Transportability across Countries

Transportability: High
Business analytics skills are highly transportable across borders. Data is a universal language and the globalisation of business gives us access to the same technology solutions wherever we are. Businesses around the world are reliant on technological solutions to deliver services and optimise their internal operations. Business analysts are therefore in demand everywhere. Business analytics plays a key role in the workings of many large multinational businesses, which may offer opportunities for international mobility.

What is the Salary of a Business Analyst?

Experience Average salary | year
Business Intelligence Analyst $85,000 £62,874 $115,000
Business Intelligence Manager 1-4 Years $135,000 £82,010 $150,000
Head of BA 5+ Years $225,000 £100,000 $185,000

What skills are needed to become a Business Analyst?

  • Project Management
  • Business Analysis
  • Management
  • Requirements Analysis
  • SQL
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Requirements Gathering
  • Microsoft Office
  • Data Analysis
  • Business Process Improvement
  • Agile Methodologies
  • Stakeholder Management
  • Team Leadership
  • Change Management
  • Business Process
  • Software Development Life Cycle
  • Analysis
  • User Acceptance Testing
  • Business Requirements
  • Business Analysis
  • Integration
  • Customer Service
  • Business Intelligence
  • Project Delivery
  • Software Project Management

Business Analyst Courses

Relevant FutureLearn courses for aspiring business analysts include courses on big data forecasting and analytics and using software to solve business problems.
A micro-credential on data-driven decision making is an introduction to the technical aspects of business analysis, using R programming to tidy, harvest, and wrangle data.
Courses on data visualisation might also be relevant, helping to outline technological issues to non-technical managers.
  • Business Analytics Using Forecasting

    Discover how business can harness the power of big data to make better predictive analysis

  • Business Problems and Software Solutions

    Discover how to overcome real-world business challenges with software solutions

  • Big Data Analytics: Opportunities, Challenges and the Future

    We produce more data than ever before Find out how big data analytics can help you make use of it

  • Data to Insight: An Introduction to Data Analysis and Visualisation

    Get a hands-on introduction to data science exploring principles of statistical analysis and data visualisation

  • Risk Management in the Global Economy

    What is risk This free course examines the financial markets and the role that risk management tools play in the global economy

  • Survival Statistics: Secrets for Demystifying Numbers

    Learn to evaluate risk make useful approximations and more rational decisions with this online course on statistics

  • Macro Environmental Analysis and Business Strategy: An Introduction

    Explore the fundamentals of business strategy and learn how the macro environment affects strategy formation

Business Analyst Microcredentials

  • Data Analytics for Business with Tableau Training

    Get professional quantitative data analytics training and fast track your career in a leading industry with high job growth

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