Top 5 Business Analyst Skills to Have

Business Analyst skills to have —Business analysts should be bilingual: they need to speak in the language of both computers and business. To be credible in both environments, they must have the required information technology and business skills. They must also have excellent communication skills to interact with the two words. 

“Business analysts spend their time communicating, asking questions, conveying needs,” explains Clément Côté, senior consultant with 2C Solutions and president of the Montreal chapter of the IIBA. “The documentation they produce must be clear and consistent, without any ambiguities, because it serves as the foundation for the computer development work.”

Business analysts must also demonstrate a talent for negotiating. They have little formal authority, because they work very independently and have no one reporting directly to them. They must therefore use persuasion, leadership and tact to convince people. 

Analytical skills are key. Business analysts must be detail-oriented, and take the time to understand each problem, as opposed to project managers, who are required to have an overview. 

Clément Côté further explains that business analysts do not generally have a lot of ambition in terms of power and managing people. They prefer to remain involved in project management on a daily basis and to maintain their independence.

Here’s the Top 5 Business Analyst skills to have: 

1. Technical:

  • Engineering systems concepts and principles
  • Technical computer knowledge
  • Complex modelling techniques
  • Technical writing

2. Analytical:

  • Analytical and conceptual expertise
  • Planning, documentation, analysis and business requirements management techniques
  • Object-oriented analysis
  • Evaluation of profitability/risk
  • Testing, verification and validation techniques
  • Creation of the Business Requirements Document – BRD
  • Administrative and reporting abilities

3. Business:

  • Knowledge of business processes 
  • Ability to have a business-oriented vision
  • Improvement of business and engineering processes
  • Strategic planning
  • Case development
  • Business writing

4. Management:

  • Decision-making
  • Fundamentals of project management
  • Management of customer relationships
  • Management of organizational changes
  • Time management and personal organization skills
  • Integrity and ethics

5. Communication:

  • Ability to formulate concepts
  • Communication of technical information to a non-technical audience
  • Communication of business information to a technical audience
  • Negotiation
  • Tact network