This article is part of an IT Career News series called Your Next Move. These articles take an inside look at the IT careers related to CompTIA certifications. Each article will include the responsibilities, qualifications, related job titles and salary range for the role. As you consider the next move in your IT career, check back with CompTIA to learn more about your job prospects and how to get there.
The most technically advanced system is useless without capable users. And even with them, technology is not always used to its full potential. Businesses are constantly looking for ways to improve how they leverage technology. Luckily, business analysts help companies align IT resources with business goals. If you crave big-picture problem solving, consider a career as a business analyst.
What Is a Business Analyst?
Business analysts observe companies and look for improvement opportunities. A business analyst conducts interviews, observes meetings and analyzes data. After gathering information, a business analyst will present their proposed solution.
Business analysts help companies identify problems, discuss solutions and implement change. Business analysts might work on some of the following types of projects:
- Analyzing a business process and making sure company technology is suited for the task
- Understanding stakeholder goals and implementing progress tracking methods
- Interpreting data analytics to inform business decisions
How to Become a Business Analyst
Most business analyst positions require a bachelor’s degree, but there are very few college or university programs tailored to business consulting.
Business analysts need to understand technology before they can guide companies. Therefore, business analysts must have a solid IT foundation and a technical vocabulary to be successful. Preparing for and getting IT certifications like CompTIA A+, CompTIA Network+ and CompTIA Security+ can build your technical knowledge.
Because formal business analyst training is rare, certifications in areas like project management can also help business analysts stand out. CompTIA Project+ empowers business analysts with the skills to navigate the project lifecycle, communication and resource allocation. With CompTIA Project+, business analysts prove to employers that they have the skills to plan, execute and document their business solutions.
Business Analyst Salary Range
The median salary for a business analyst is $82,450 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics).
Business Analyst Job Outlook
Business analyst employment is projected to grow 14 percent from 2016 to 2026, with more than 115,000 new job openings (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics).
Skills Needed by Business Analyst
Employers may require the following skills for business analysts:
- Communication skills to guide conversations with management and clients
- Analytical skills to find issues from varying information sources
- Creativity with project planning and problem solving
- Persuasion skills when explaining proposed solutions
- Self-management skills to complete tasks without frequent intervention
Job Titles Related to Business Analyst
- Management Consultant
- Management Analyst
- Technology Consultant