Careeer Plan: Specializations in Business Analysis

As the job market becomes increasingly more dynamic and demand for new jobs and skills arise, we will provide you with a series of career plan articles. In this way, we attempt to give you a sneak peek into new career opportunities and what trainings there are to help you stay competitive and progress in your professional development.

Specializations in Business Analysis

Recently, we looked at what it means and takes to undertake a career in business analysis. In this article we will look at three different specializations within the field and opportunities for career development for senior practitioners as well as the relevant techniques and methodologies which they need to have understanding of.

Agile Analyst

Essential skills: profound understanding of the agile methodology, product road map, user stories.

The traditional business analysis is being challenged by the demands of the agile projects and namely high adaptability, response to change and faster time-to-market. As a result, agile business analysis is becoming a topic of an increasing interest which represents the same job mission – ensuring that the solution achieves the desired business and delivers maximum value to the stakeholders but the way to get there is different. Requirements are gathered and refined through an iterative process and in close collaboration with the relevant stakeholders. The agile business analyst needs to make the right information available to the development team at the right time.

For more information see: Agile Business Analysis Training.

Process Analyst

Essential skills: process improvement (e.g. Lean Six Sigma), modeling with BPMN, UML.

Broadly speaking, the goal of the process analyst is to support the organization and its ability to change by analyzing, designing and improving business processes. Process analysts use various techniques and notations to analyze processes, document them and facilitate stakeholders to decide on new business process designs. Some of the most common methods are BPMN (Business Process Model & Notation) and UML (Unified Modeling Language). BPMN introduces graphical notations which facilitate the understanding of internal business procedures to both technical and business users in business process diagrams. UML is a general-purpose modelling language which visualizes the design of a system, the flow of a process or describe activities.

For more information see: Business Process Modelling with BPMN; UML Introduction; Lean Six Sigma.

Enterprise Architect

Essential skills: SOA, BPMN, TOGAF, Agile and Waterfall methodologies.

The enterprise architect is a senior-level specialization within business analysis whose goal is to ensure the alignment of the IT infrastructure and the organizational strategy and its ability to change. Two fundamental high-level design approaches are SOA (Service Oriented Architecture) and TOGAF (The Open Group Architecture Framework). SOA is an approach of creating enterprise architecture that is based on the use of services. So, business processes and information are viewed within a service-oriented context and the design of the software solutions follows the service orientation concepts. TOGAF is a framework of governance of technology implementation whose goal is to ensure that software projects deliver the desired business goals and that their results reoccur.

For more information, see: SOA Fundamentals; TOGAF Level 1 & 2.

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