I often get asked how to transition in to the Business Analysis profession and a lot of aspiring business analysts have the misconception that they need to undergo a plethora of training courses, masters degrees on top of masters degrees, start university all over again, do a catalog of certifications, get a brain transplant…kidding, but you get my drift?
We live in an age where we are constantly made to feel inadequate. There’s always something more to do or become to measure up in order to move to the next level. But this is sadly almost always false, what you have is all you need to get you there.
Now let’s dive into these mistakes and talk not only about why they are mistakes but more importantly what you should do instead to successfully land your dream BA job.
Mistake #1: You buy into the idea that everything you need to make your career more successful is to move into a business analyst role. So you hurry off to enroll for a program or a BA certification, hoping it will automatically land you a BA job. The truth is, not many organizations care about your BA course or certification. The main thing they care about is whether or not you can do the job.
Don’t get me wrong courses, degrees and certifications definitely have their time and place and they come in much later to help you get further grounded in your BA career.
Your main focus should on doing some research and personal studies first. Find out what Business Analysts do, what it entails and if it’s even the right fit for you. I once spoke with someone who wanted to move into business analysis and I asked if they enjoyed relating with people, facilitating meetings etc. and the answer was no. You can’t be a business analyst if you’re not a people person because this is going form about 90% of your job.
Geek out on newsletters, articles, join a community of like-minded professionals, where you can engage with other business analysts and get the guidance and support you need for a successful transition.
Mistake #2: You whip up a quick resume including the shiny new credentials you’ve just obtained in mistake number 1 ☝️, leaving your previous skills and experience as they are. Maybe you managed to throw in a few keywords here and there like BRD, FRD, MoSCoW, FR, NFR, BPMN… till your resume looks like a glossary of BA acronyms. And you hope it will impress a hiring manager enough to consider you for a job..wrong!!!
Find out how the skills and experience gained in your Non-BA job can be leveraged and work them into your resume strategically so that you can stand out as a seasoned BA.
Mistake #3: So your not-so-BA, BA resume impresses someone and you managed to score an interview. You waltz in without any knowledge or experience of projects that solve real-life business problems and what the BA needs to do. You throw around the phrases and acronyms from your theoretical studies at your interview and you struggle when asked behavioral questions or questions relating to how you actually performed BA tasks on a real project.
This is where getting exposure to business analysis competencies, tools and techniques via personal projects cannot be overemphasized and there many ways to accomplish that.
Business analysis is a fulfilling and rewarding profession and you can make your transition smoothly without feeling frustrated or debilitated. This is why I am so passionate about helping ambitious professionals who feel stuck in their current careers reignite their passion, leverage their skills and land their dream jobs.
If you’d like to get the clarity, support and accountability you need to move you toward a smooth and successful BA transition, schedule a FREE 45-minute BA career strategy session with me and lets get you started on the right path to create the career of your dreams.