Have you noticed the increasing demand for business analysts with stronger software skills or a wider range of skill sets?
Because this is a top hiring trend, business analysts have expressed concern about the range of skillsets requested for on job postings.
Some of these strong concerns are often worded as:
What software skills do business analysts need?
Should business analysts be made to learn computer programming?
Which software programs are required for business analysis jobs?
Along the same lines, one of the concerns expressed is; should business analysts have in depth knowledge of SQL, Access, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software and Reporting writing software?
This article provides the needed guidance for the questions bordering on “what software skills are required for business analyst jobs“.
And while you are reading this, you may also want to read this article on why IT Managers are looking for business analysts with a wider range of skill sets.
Are Software Skills Required For Business Analysis Jobs?
The answer to the question: are software skills required for business analyst jobs … is yes and no.
Some companies hire only for the core business analyst competencies, while others include a wider range of software skills in their job description.
The core business analyst skill sets does not include knowledge of specific software skills. However, in the current job market, IT Managers are cutting costs by hiring business analysts with a broader range of software skills.,/p>
Traditionally, business analysts have had to learn the specific software used by a business after they get hired. Now, IT Managers are changing track by making some of these software skills required for hiring!
Which Software Skills Are Required For Business Analyst Jobs?
I will divide the software skills needed for business analyst jobs into three groups.
The first (A) group refers to the software skills required for ALL business analyst jobs.
The second (B) group includes the software skills that are a nice to have or frequently asked for.
The third (C) group represents the software skills that are not usually required.
Software Skills Required For ALL Business Analyst Jobs (A List):
These include office productivity software tools like Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint and Outlook.
These software tools are frequently used in the day to day tasks of a Business Analyst.
These software tools are also required for a business analyst position whether they are stated clearly on the job description or not.
Nice To Have Software Skills For Business Analyst Jobs (B List):
The nice to have software skills include Relational Database Skills, SQL skills, Data Analysis skills and Report Writing skills.
Next to office productivity software skills, database software skills are in-demand for business analyst positions.
Organizations looking to cut costs or reduce It staff may combine the business analyst job role with the data analyst job role or report writer as the IT Manager or Director sees fit! When this happens the IT department will post business analyst job descriptions listing software packages traditionally required for data analyst or report writer type jobs.
Highly Specialized Software Skills Needed For Business Analyst Jobs (C List):
IT Managers are also hiring business analysts with the specific skills needed for custom or specialized software packages!
The list of software skills in this list is infinite as it depends on the personal decision or needs of the hiring manager.
An example is the IT director who wants to hire business analysts with Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software skills or computer programming skills!
Now, it is impractical to worry about or focus on this list when preparing for the business analyst job market because the expectations and needs are diverse, wide and unpredictable.
If you are a business analyst with a specialized software skill wanted by a hiring manager, you should highlight that in your resume. If you don’t already have a specialized software skill, you are better of working on the business analysis skills in the nice to have software skills (B List)!
Should IT Managers Hire Business Analysts with Highly Specialized Software Skills?
Since only office productivity software skills are required for all business analyst jobs, why do IT Managers then include specialized software skills in business analyst job descriptions?
IT Managers are looking to cut costs by combining the job descriptions for business analysts, data analysts, software developers and report writers.
With this in mind, business analysts need to be flexible in their approach to the job market.
IT Managers and staffing specialists may write up business analyst job descriptions based on an imperfect knowledge of the core business analyst roles and responsibilities.
If your boss writes up an imperfect business analyst job description based on misconceptions, about the roles and responsibilities of business analysts, you may providing some guidance by sending your IT Manager or Director the business analyst professional development curriculum downloadable here.
Who Are The Business Analysts With A Broad Range Of Software Skills?
Some business analysts really want to stay out of computer programming or data analysis or report writing or learning specialized software programs.
If a business analyst with that mindset is hired for a role that requires learning or working with a broad range of software skill sets, that business analyst will under-perform.
If you are an employer hiring for business analysts with software skills, you may want to first hire for business analysts with SQL or Relational Databases or Data Analysis skills and then train the new business analyst hire on the list of highly specialized software skills needed by your company.
More Information On How To Improve Business Analysis Skills
The Business Analyst Boot Camp training is a practical, job-focused, web-based, instructor-led, video-based training program for business analysts.
The Business Analyst Boot Camp training is a complete, end to end training program that covers both beginner and advanced business analysis courses including requirements analysis training, UML training, Use Case training.
The Business Analyst training program is designed for the practicing Business Analyst who wants to learn or master business analysis skills for the day-to-day job requirements.
The Business Analyst training program has an in-built diagnostics, testing and certification process and an online reporting tool that features your grades or scores as you (the Business Analyst) work your way through practical business analysis activities or watch the various business analyst training videos.
The Business Analyst training provides real savings and return on investment (ROI) for individuals or corporations looking to manage business analyst training costs.
The cost of business analyst training is easily $5,000 or more for a series of business analysis courses that only covers one core skill or business analyst competency (e.g. UML Training).
Therefore, an IT Manager or business analyst looking for business analyst training that covers all the core business analysis competencies will have to invest in excess of ten thousand dollars.
That is why, we are only guaranteeing the current price of the Business Analyst Boot Camp for a limited time!
Right now, you can get the complete, end to end, beginner to advanced training across all business analyst competences in the Business Analyst Boot Camp for a discounted price.
We also have a discount program for corporations sending 2 or more business analysts for training. Click here to learn more.
For a limited-time, we are running a special for Business Analysts who want to broaden their skill sets or learn more software skills. For example, with the current special, you can register for both the Business Analyst Boot Camp and SQL Boot Camp for close to the price of one (2-for-1 special). A number of people like yourself are now taking advantage of this offer so, click here to get more information