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Navigating Change: Business Analysis in 2023

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Let's take a moment to review some of the incredible milestones that have shaped 2022.

Looking back, 2023 was a big year.

On the one hand, IIBA celebrated its 20th anniversary. It was heart-warming to see the community come together to help tell the institute’s story while reflecting on the development of business analysis. The profession has grown so much since those early days of October 2003, and it shows in IIBA’s diverse, engaged membership.

There are currently over 120 chapters across 40 different countries (each pin represents a different IIBA chapter on the map below). Continuing to serve and support the profession and this diverse community remains our top priority.

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On the other hand, excitement around the ongoing tech revolution—or what McKinsey called Industry 4.0—was palpable. The role that business analysis will play in tomorrow’s organizations was on many people’s minds, and the only limit was their imagination.

Business analysis and machine learning. Business analysis and the internet of things. Business analysis and ChatGPT. Even business analysis and quantum computing! These were the subjects of presentations, articles, and podcasts on the future of the profession.

For me, this connection between past and future is a reminder of the hard work ahead and the growth yet to be achieved. To enable organizational change, business analysis helps define a clear vision of the future and the path to get there. To support business change in the face of all this disruption, IIBA must do the same.

Behind each of this year’s initiatives is an unwavering commitment to advance and advocate for the profession, to drive good business outcomes through business analysis so that every person achieves more. As the global business analysis community expands and diversifies, new demands are being placed on professional resources, standards, and infrastructure.

Here’s how IIBA is responding to continue supporting members and the community while laying a path for a future brimming with potential.

Expanding Professional Resources

Although the impact of new technologies was certainly a popular topic, expert insights on practical business analysis techniques and skills remained in high demand.

The Webinar Archive Adventures—Legendary Talks Revisited series assembled our top webinars on techniques, human skills, agile, and strategy and enterprise—to meet the diverse needs of the global community. But we also wanted to give members even more hands-on resources they can apply to their work, so we expanded IIBA's KnowledgeHub. Both the Business Analysis Standard and interactive task cards were added, offering new ways for members to engage and retain vital skills and techniques.

In addition to making resources more accessible, we’re always looking for ways to add to the business analysis toolkit. With the release of The Rock Crusher in May, the community learned about a comprehensive approach to backlog management. Written by deeply experienced practitioners Steve Adolph, Shane Hastie, and Ryland Leyton, the book offers holistic approaches that can help business analysts improve flow and deliver astonishing value to their organizations. It was released through IIBA Publishing, a platform for practitioners to share insightful perspectives and valuable knowledge with the community—true to our “for the members, by the members” ethos.

Given the relentless pace of change in recent years, business analysis professionals need to show the world they mean business—literally. That’s why we enhanced IIBA's Certified Professional Directory to help them better share their credentials and achievements online. There’s growing demand for professionals who understand the impact of new technologies on business processes and the way people work. Now, there’s an easier way to find them.  

New features include current and historical employment information, job search status, certifications, membership, a credential wallet, and more. The directory also provides a searchable hub of members, chapter leaders, and certified professionals, connecting the dots between business leaders and the organizations that depend on them to grow.

Finally, we made good on the idea that any professional can benefit from gaining business analysis skills. And that’s especially true today. In partnership with the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA), we unveiled a new program that provides professional training to HR professionals. It expands the range of business leaders who can now upskill in areas such as business analysis, change management, and project management. 

Making Analysis More Accessible

As the global business analysis community grows, we must continue expanding access to critical professional resources.

Building on last year’s work with our French, Japanese, Chinese, and Portuguese communities, IIBA’s latest translations have helped more members access key standards and certifications in their own language. Thanks to our amazing volunteers and other contributors, the following translated materials were released this year:

  • Arabic: BABOK Guide Glossary  
  • Canadian French: The Business Analysis Standard
  • Japanese: The Business Analysis Standard
  • Chinese: The Business Analysis Standard
  • Spanish: BABOK Guide Glossary
  • Brazilian Portuguese: Entry Certificate in Business Analysis (ECBA) exam, The Business Analysis Standard, and Being Nimble  
  • Ukrainian: BABOK Guide Glossary
That said, the work is far from done. Many more translations of key resources are being planned in the years ahead. We look forward to working with our volunteers again to make professional knowledge even more accessible to global practitioners.

In the same vein, the Entry Certificate in Business Analysis (ECBA) was streamlined this year—giving prospective business analysis professionals a more seamless route to learn fundamental capabilities. The new process reduces the steps required for candidates, making the certificate more attainable than it’s ever been (but no less rigorous).

Initiatives like these help ensure that pathways to the profession are open and navigable for as many people as possible.

Leading the Way with Research

Research is only as good as the action it inspires. To support practitioners and organizations in their business analysis work, IIBA regularly conducts and publishes research studies, such as the Global State of Business Analysis Report and the Corporate Benchmark Report. These provide insights and standards for the profession, helping business analysts around the world advocate for the value of business analysis.

They also help organizations chart a course for success through training, process improvement, stakeholder engagement, best practices, and the latest industry standards. Members of IIBA’s Corporate Program receive support and professional development resources to develop a skilled and proficient business analysis team within their organizations.

And there’s proof that this support leads to better enterprise outcomes, which is IIBA’s vision. According to our recent Corporate Benchmark Report, 86% of IIBA Corporate Program members noticed an improvement in the quality and effectiveness of their organization’s business analysis deliverables over time.

Investing in a structured training program doesn’t just equip professionals with the latest tools and techniques. It also creates a culture of learning and adaptation within the organization, with business analysis at the forefront.

Engaging with the Community  

The hundreds of IIBA chapter events held annually are the heart of the business analysis community, and this year had many standouts.

We helped IIBA Australia stage the 2023 Festival of Business Analysis across Australia and New Zealand. This series of events welcomed almost 1,000 attendees across six cities, making a big impact with sessions on power skills for business analysts, AI, digital transformation, story mapping, and more. Online program recordings are still available to watch.

2023 Festival of Business Analysis.png

As part of IIBA's Global Event Series, we also launched our first-ever hybrid event, the Business Analysis Impact India Conference, with the support of more than 40 chapter leaders and volunteers. Attendees joined us in person in Bengaluru, India, and virtually from around the world. They learned from over 30 industry experts, gathered practical business analysis tips to drive better business outcomes, and connected with over 300 like-minded professionals in the field.

Business Analysis Impact India Conference.png
At the annual Building Business Capability (BBC) event in Las Vegas, Nevada, business analysis professionals from around the world came together to exchange knowledge, share best practices, and explore emerging trends in the industry. One of the premier events for business analysis, the BBC conference is known for its practical workshops and real-world tutorials. The networking opportunities, including IIBA’s 20th anniversary celebration, were valuable for sharing knowledge and building professional relationships. The multi-day event featured a diverse range of sessions, from data and AI to leadership, product ownership, visual thinking, career development, and cybersecurity.

BBC Conference.png

On November 1, IIBA celebrated Global Business Analysis Day and 20 years of IIBA. Featuring leading speakers, networking opportunities, and recognition ceremonies, this free 24-hour event united the business analysis community across the globe. Generating over 3,000 interactive discussions among attendees, the agenda explored AI, sustainability, equity, diversity and inclusion, the psychology of trust and cognitive biases, and more. We’re proud to have brought together more than 6,500 professionals from around the world for this celebration of the profession—a new record.

2023 at a Glance

2023 at a Glkance.png

Looking Ahead

The many projects being planned for 2024 and beyond will offer professionals, members, and the broader business analysis community more ways to engage with and develop business analysis capabilities. But they won’t exactly be business as usual. If 2023 has taught us anything, it’s that new opportunities and risks are revolutionizing how organizations operate. And business analysis professionals around the world are leading them forward.

The extent to which these organizations harness the creativity and expertise of business analysts—i.e. the human element—will help determine whether their transformation is successful. Stewarding the profession through this paradigm shift, together with the business analysis community, is a challenge we’re up for.

Just as business analysis enables change by defining the future, so too must IIBA look to the future to continue advocating for the profession. Further growth is ahead, and it promises to be even more profound than what the past two decades have yielded.

IIBA members can access our full suite of resources, including KnowledgeHub, Global Research Program, Digital Library, and more. Not a member? Join today and unlock your career potential.

About the Author
Jeff Roth

Jeff is passionate about advancing the global business analysis community. He leads a remarkable team responsible for all marketing, communications, brand and design, content delivery, lead generation, webinars and events, advertising, and related activities to nurture the growing demand for business analysis. With over twenty years of digital marketing leadership experience, most recently including the Silicon Valley start-up world, Jeff helps IIBA continue to evolve with the changing demands of the workplace and our diverse global membership.


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