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AI’s Impact on Business Analysis

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A buzzword no more, artificial intelligence (AI) has been making seismic waves in the tech industry recently, especially with the rapid evolution of ChatGPT.

Today, its impact on our lives is undeniable.

More than just a chatbot, AI can help field high volumes of customer queries, accurately forecast market trends, and even detect hidden illnesses long before they manifest.

It’s no surprise, then, that businesses have begun adopting AI to improve their operations and gain a competitive edge.

But what does it mean for business analysis professionals? Will the profession become obsolete, or will the rise of AI create new opportunities for them to thrive?

Let's dive into AI’s relationship with business analysis and do a little forecasting of our own.

Business analysts bring the brains

The idea that AI could soon make business analysis obsolete is hard to fathom.

Business analysis professionals add value to organizations in ways that AI enthusiasts can only dream of, so it’s unlikely that bots will take their jobs.

To pose any serious threat to the profession, AI would have to:
  • bridge the gap between a business and its IT team,
  • collaborate with stakeholders in eliciting, prioritizing, and refining requirements,
  • communicate effectively with stakeholders and ensure progress toward projects goals,
  • understand business processes and translate them into technical requirements, and
  • adopt a creative approach to solving business problems.
That’s a tall order, even for a supercomputer. The next time you’re chatting with your AI friend, try getting it to do any one of these even remotely well.

It’s undoubtedly a valuable tool, but it won’t be replacing business analysts anytime soon.

For a better sense of the value a business analyst can bring, check out the Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP®) certification.

AI is your new superpower

Now that we’ve established that they’re sticking around, how can business analysis professionals make the most of AI?

The answer is simple: leverage it to supercharge the things they’re already known for, like using data to make better business decisions.

AI-powered business analytics tools offer insights that would otherwise be buried in data, and they can automate repetitive tasks to help prioritize strategic work. Predictive analytics, for example, can identify trends and patterns, and these insights can be used to allocate resources more wisely.

What’s more, natural language processing (or NLP) can automatically generate reports from unstructured data sources like social media and customer feedback surveys, which can then be used to explore new possibilities with customers in no time.

When it comes to making better decisions for businesses, business analysis + AI is an elite-tier hack.

Solve the hardest problems, faster

AI is increasingly being used to automate low-level tasks, freeing up time and energy for us humans to focus on what matters most. For business analysis professionals, that means identifying new opportunities, analyzing data, and improving processes.

As AI continues to evolve, a greater number of mundane tasks will be automated, further increasing the value that business analysts can bring to their organizations.

But its strength isn’t limited to mundane tasks.

AI can also help business analysis professionals diagnose problems more effectively, test different solutions against each other, and even predict (and solve) future problems before they happen. This will help organizations make better, more timely decisions, avoiding costly mistakes in the process.

Let the bots handle the easy, monotonous work, while you tackle the hard stuff with their help

Communication is key

As AI adoption gathers steam, business analysis will undoubtedly evolve. Even today, business analysis professionals help bridge the gap between technical teams and tech users through workshops—a role that will only grow in importance.

Workshops help business analysis professionals understand the needs of users and translate them into requirements for technical teams. They also help technical teams understand the capabilities of AI and how it can be used to solve business problems.

By facilitating communication between these two groups, business analysts can ensure that AI is deployed effectively and efficiently.

There will also be a need for business analysis professionals who can navigate AI’s increasingly murky waters, especially when it comes to ethics.

With their deep understanding of both business and technology, business analysis professionals are essential partners in helping organizations realize the full potential of AI while avoiding its many risks.

If you’re interested in learning more, IIBA’s KnowledgeHub offers key content for running virtual workshops.

The future is bright

As organizations strive to become more data-driven in their decision-making, there’s a golden opportunity for those trained in data analysis to shape the business world of the future with the help of cutting-edge tech.

Business analysts are responsible for analyzing organizations and documenting their processes or systems, assessing the business model and its integration with technology. The advent of AI will only strengthen this role, allowing them to take on ever-more strategic positions at the decision-making table.

For all you business analysts out there, keep your skills chiseled, use your cognitive abilities to keep delivering value, and don’t be afraid to leverage new technologies in your pursuit of positive change.

Every business will have a privileged place for you.

To expand your skill set and optimize your business analysis job opportunities, consider earning a professional certification. IIBA offers an array of professional certifications to help you stand out to employers. Learn about IIBA’s certifications.  

About The Author:
Ananya Pani.jpg

Ananya (Ann) Pani is the co-founder of Adaptive US and heads global sales and marketing. She is also a coach and mentor to thousands of business analysis professionals in their pursuit of achieving IIBA certifications. She is a regular author, and blogger on various business analysis, management and technology-related topics in leading tech sites and journals and is a 2021 Forbes Next 1,000 Honoree.  
Ann is a passionate entrepreneur and a strong supporter of encouraging women in technology and has helped many women to come back to work after long career breaks. Adaptive US has established itself as a global leader in the Business Analysis skill development domain with students and corporates from 80+ countries under her dynamic leadership. 

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