Under project manager, business analyst comes in second among the top tech jobs held by women, according to a 2013 salary survey by Dice. Business analysts and senior business analysts need a lot of the same skills and can work together on the same projects. Expertise and a management perspective are what set them apart.
Business Analysts Solve Problems
Business analysts are change agents, problem solvers and strong communicators who use data and technology to help businesses improve. As one, you may have a variety of duties including helping managers define a strategy for improving work processes and systems then putting those improvements in place. Most business analysts enter the job with at least a bachelor’s degree in business or information technology.
Senior Analysts Guide
The senior business analyst governs all aspects of a project keeping it in harmony with the client’s entire organization. As one, you’d make sure that changes to systems or business processes are profitable for your client and implemented without disrupting your client’s service to customers. The senior analyst works closely with a client’s leadership to recommend changes and work through obstacles. Senior analysts also serve as managers and mentors to business analysts. Some have completed the Certified Business Analysis Professional program offered by the International Institute of Business Analysis.
A business analyst may have expertise in a certain type of project or in a type of domain of business analysis such as insurance or banking. Developing expertise in multiple business domains by handling projects in different industries helps an analyst climb to the senior rank. More than the depth of a specialty or number of years on the job, the breadth of experience helps a senior business analyst keep a project aligned with an organization’s overall goals while also being able to dive deep into the minutiae of the project, says Certified Business Analysis Professional Kupe Kupersmith in a 2012 article for "Business Analyst Times."
Business analysts share with their senior colleagues an understanding of business structure and organizations, as well as information technology. Analysts of either position need to be skilled in tools of the trade such as the Unified Modeling Language and Business Process Modeling Notation, which are standard for understanding and designing workflow patterns and business processes. The two types of analysts also share the need to bring to their jobs excellent facilitation, organization, decision-making and consultative skills.
- Business Analyst Times: The Six Key Characteristics of a Senior Business Analyst
- International Institute of Business Analysis: What Is Business Analysis?
- Dice: Parity for Some, But Tech Women’s Pay Lags Overall
- International Institute of Business Analysis: Advancing Your Business Analysis Career: Intermediate and Senior Role Descriptions
- International Institute of Business Analysis: Becoming a Business Analyst
- IBM: UML Basics: An Introduction to the Unified Modeling Language
A writer since 1995, Christian Fisher is an author specializing in personal empowerment and professional success. From 2000 to 2005, he wrote true stories of human triumph for "Woman's World" magazine. Since 2004, he has also helped launch businesses including a music licensing company and a music school.