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Top 3 Business Analysis Certification Tips

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Over ninety percent of respondents to the IIBA Global State of Business Analysis Survey would recommend professional certification to a colleague to support their career development. This proves that the vast majority of business analysis professionals who get certifications benefit from them. Still, not every business analysis professional gets certified. By learning why business analysis certifications are valuable, how to choose a certification, and how to ace a certification exam, you can decide if certification is right for you.   

60% of business analysts who get a certification benefit from it within 6 months. Get certified using these tips.


Why Get a Business Analysis Certification?

Getting a business analysis certification can help you get started as a business analysis professional or build your existing analysis career. Interestingly, the top benefit respondents to the Global State of Business Analysis Survey (GSBA) got from certification was higher confidence at work (30%). Other benefits included:   

  • Feeling more fulfilled in their work role (15%) 
  • Finding a job (11%)  
  • Getting a salary increase (11%) 
  • Improving their performance review (9%) 
  • Helping land a promotion (6%) 

Gaining new skills and validating existing skills with certifications can help business analysis professionals boost their confidence at work and negotiate their salary. 

28% of Business Analysis Professionals Who Get Certified See Benefits Immediately

How soon after getting a business analysis certification can you expect to see benefits like higher self-confidence, better pay, and feelings of job fulfillment? Respondents to the 2021 GSBA survey reported seeing immediate benefits after earning their certification (28%) and over 50% realized benefits in less than a year.  
Bonus: Posting digital badges of your certifications on social can help you become a more competitive candidate in the eyes of recruiters. In turn, this could bump up your earning potential.

3 Business Analysis Certification Tips 

If you decide to get certified, these tips will help make the process quicker and easier:  

1) Prepare for the exam according to your learning preference - There is more than one way to prepare for a business analysis certification exam. According to IIBA’s GSBA Report, business analysis professionals develop their skill sets via self-study (32%), blended learning (31%), online learning (26%), and classroom learning (12%). Try different modes of learning until you find one (or a combination) that works best for you. 

2) Start with a foundational certification - Many analysis professionals choose to start out with an entry-level business analysis certification or certificate. A great example is the IIBA Entry Certificate in Business Analysis (ECBA). The ECBA covers foundational knowledge on business analysis according to the BABOK® Guide. It proves to employers that you have the in-demand business analysis knowledge and skills they are looking for. 
3) Stick to a study schedule - To get the most out of your certification study materials, create a learning schedule and do everything you can to stick to it. The learning schedule should be in addition to your online or in-person certification courses. And don’t forget to prepare for your online remote proctored exam – be prepared, know what to expect and read the IIBA® Guide to Online Proctored Exams! The more effort you put into studying for your certification exam, the more likely you are to pass it on the first try.

IIBA offers a variety of industry-standard business analysis certifications. If you aren’t sure which certification to start with, you can’t go wrong with IIBA’s Entry Certificate in Business Analysis or explore the 4 Steps to Business Analysis Certification.   


About The Author:
Isabel Feher-Watters

Isabel Feher-Watters is the Certification Programs Manager at IIBA® and has 20+ years' experience building talent and leadership in the workplace through learning, certification, and credentialing programs and practices. She holds a professional certification as a Certified Association Executive (CAE®), Certified Training and Development Professional (CTDP)™, and a Change Management Registered Practitioner (CMRP®). Isabel is passionate about learning and professional development in the Business Analysis community.


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