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Updated by Certes News on Jun 11, 2018
Headline for Key Skills for New Business Analysts
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Key Skills for New Business Analysts

If you have reached a point in your career where you are ready for a change, have an analytical brain and a good understanding of how businesses work, you could be an ideal business analyst candidate. If you are exploring roles as a business analyst, there are a number of key skills that you will need to be well versed in, or be ready and willing to learn:


Critical thinking

Business analysts are responsible for analysing and evaluating all aspects of businesses. It’s important for business analysts to listen carefully to the specific needs of a business, but just as vital to be able to be critical of these needs and explore other options.


Problem solving

Problem solving

Every project has its problems and it’s the business analyst’s job to identify them and work towards a solution. Business analysts must work as part of a facilitating team to solve any technical problems faced and help with negotiations between stakeholders or even multiple businesses.



Whilst critical thinking and problem-solving skills are key to the role of a business analyst, these particular skills are especially useful if the candidate lacks good communication skills. Being a good communicator means having the ability to work amongst a team, facilitate meetings, ask the most important questions of other team members, and of course, be a good listener. Excellent communication in all settings is essential, whether face-to-face, virtually or via writing.

Relationship building is a key part of communication and candidates must be good at forming and maintaining relationships with stakeholders and team members.


Analysis skills

Analysis skills

Business analysts must be able to make use of various techniques to analyse problems and develop solutions. Analysis takes place on multiple levels:

  • How the business works and how business processes operate
  • How software systems support business processes
  • How data and key information is stored, maintained and used

Self-management and motivation

Business analysts may not be project managers, but the ability to self-manage the business analysis effort is essential. Business analysts should be self-motivated and proactive, ensuring that deadlines are met as other departments will be dependent on analysis work. In addition to self-management, the ability to delegate is also a useful skill.


Methodology skills

There are a number of specific methodology used by business analysts, including:

  • Agile
  • Six Sigma
  • BPMN (Business Process Modelling Notation)
  • Rational Unified Process

A good understanding of these methodologies is a considerable advantage for new business analysts.


Industry expertise

Whilst expertise in all industries is highly unlikely, in fact, practically impossible, expertise in specific industries should certainly be leveraged by business analysts.


Ability to take feedback

Business analysts need to have a fairly thick skin as they will be faced with a lot of feedback, some positive and some negative. It’s vital to be able to separate business feedback from personal feedback.

Many skill requirements for business analysts can be transferred from previous career experience, however, for more information on more specific skills, or for assistance in finding business analyst jobs, you can visit