The profession of business analysis is once again going through change. If you are working in the profession today – you are seeing the changes firsthand. Possibly your organization has moved completely to an agile delivery framework or your organization is focusing heavily on the value of using analytics to guide business decision making. Maybe your organization is investing heavily in new technologies like AI, robotics, blockchain, or natural language generation. Whatever shifts and swings you are seeing – you might be wondering how all these changes will impact your role and profession.
I recently had an opportunity to sit down and speak with Steve Blais PMP, PMI-PBA, about the future of business analysis. In our discussion, Steve shared his optimism for the profession. Today’s BAs will continue to be in strong demand in the future. How their skills are leveraged will change. Future BA’s will need to be more adaptable because requirements will be discovered through research and data analysis – and what we think could be a viable solution option today, may change by tomorrow. Today’s BAs must be capable of working with large amounts of data, have sharp research and investigative skills, and be proactive at seeking out opportunities as opposed to waiting on the organization to come forward with a proposed solution.
Wondering what skills and value you can bring to this new environment? Steve’s advice is to go back to the basics – understand how to model and analyze data – master the soft skills of negotiation, problem solving, facilitation, and communication and take time to understand the capabilities of these new technologies. Organizations will rely upon you to be proactive in your approach to defining business problems and helping to support business decision making. Your ability to perform effective and thorough analysis is more important than your ability to understand the deep technical aspects of these new technologies. Business analysts will complement the technologists and continue to work collaboratively with these newly structured teams.
Have a desire to work in the upper echelons of your organization? Steve predicts our future business leaders will require a solid background in business analysis in order to effectively lead. Maybe it’s time to adjust the BA career path with a pathway into upper level management! Listen to the rest of our discussion here: Episode #2.