A business analyst is an individual who analyzes a business or company domain and records its current business, processes or systems, or its interrelationship with other industries. Business Analysts helps in guiding organizations in enhancing processes, goods, services, and technology through data analysis to help in decision making. They make use of data obtained from a variety of sources to understand business, industry, customer, financial, information technology, or service practices. This knowledge then enables them to formulate ideas that will lead to effective business decisions.
Business analysts are required in different companies for various purposes. The most common are financial, managerial, competitive and strategic planning. Financial Analysts makes use of financial data obtained from a variety of sources to analyze the profitability, efficiency, cost effectiveness, and future growth prospects. Managers, for example, need to make use of business information gathered by analysts to develop strategies to manage a business or achieve business goals. Competitive and Strategic Planning Analysts conducts researches on the market trends, evaluate competition, make use of new technologies and tools to improve their strategies, and forecast the changes that are expected to affect a business. These professionals are also responsible for assessing organizational effectiveness, identifying ways to enhance organizational performance, and making use of information in business processes and technology to increase efficiency, reliability, productivity, and customer service.
Business Analysts are also employed in Information Technology departments to analyze the organization’s information systems and to develop strategies to improve information technology implementation. Their tasks include developing an information infrastructure plan to design, implement, manage, and update information technology systems. They also provide management training to help organizations enhance IT processes. These business analysts are also engaged in developing software applications, designing and implementing networks, analyzing network management, testing and validating networks and software, using network diagnostics and troubleshooting tools, and performing network security analysis. Business Analysts may also conduct risk assessments for businesses in order to minimize financial exposure to risk.
Business analysts who specialize in strategic planning may also help organizations make use of software to monitor business processes and integrate business strategy into existing and emerging business practices. Business analysts also use software to analyze market trends, develop plans to overcome barriers to expansion, analyze customer buying behavior, and evaluate strategic business relationships. They may also conduct seminars and workshops to train business owners on organizational change management techniques. and to promote new ideas and concepts. Business analysts may conduct studies to predict the trends and development trends in various areas like accounting, economics, marketing, operations, finance, management, customer satisfaction, customer service, and customer relationship management.
Business analysts who have analytical skills also make use of software to monitor and track the activities of their clients or the performance of a business. Business Analysts also make use of statistical and scientific methodologies to study business trends, develop cost-effectiveness and quality, improve service, and generate marketing materials. Business analysts also make use of software to conduct surveys or questionnaires to obtain information for product design. Business analysts who have extensive theoretical backgrounds in the field of business may teach in business schools or attend seminars to gain a better knowledge in this field.
Business analysts who are not trained in business also work under consultants,in-house, and companies who provide information technology solutions, to develop a comprehensive solution for a business. Some of them work in private practice, consulting, or as consultants for government organizations. Some of these are hired on contract. and work for other companies who require such people. Some companies are also engaged in conducting research. or in advising clients, such as companies with an in-house team of business analysts.
Business Analysts are also conducting research in their own time. They may conduct research on a particular subject or they may conduct research on a broad subject. They may also do researches for their own business or to train their peers, such as other business analysts. Business analysts also make use of software to carry out a wide range of statistical analyses or to make use of statistical methods to collect data. Some business analysts perform work in organizations such as financial institutions, media, manufacturing, retailing, software development, software engineering, advertising, retail, telecommunications, etc.
Business analysts also work under project management teams, which consist of software developers, architects, software engineers, and testers. They may also work with IT management teams to determine what the requirements are in different areas such as database design, programming, system testing, programming and deployment, production process, etc. Business analysts who are employed in this area must be very good at communication.