In this article, we will talk about what an IT Business Analyst is. We will discuss the skills professionals in this field require. We will also cover the various job roles of IT Business Analysts and touch upon the skills these notable analysts need.
And IT Business Analyst provides IT companies and any other company with an IT department with an edge over the competition. Professionals in this field provide these companies with the opportunity to improve their services, products, or performance. Thus, like other business analysts, their IT counterparts also help their respective companies increase revenue or optimize operational activities. However, there is one core difference between professionals in IT business analytics and other analytics, the considerable focus on IT. Analysts working in the IT analytics or consulting domain are involved with evaluating the performance of the process in general and the hardware and IT infrastructure. They must also deal with scaling, planning, and providing solutions to meet any data or IT requirements that the stakeholders have. Today’s world is built on data, and IT business analysts are also heavily invested in working with data and facilitating the effective use of data. Let us learn more about what it means to be an analyst specializing in IT and what it takes to get hired for IT business analyst jobs.
What Is An IT Business Analyst?
An IT Business Analyst primarily focuses on Information Technology and analyzes companies’ systems, programs, and data. These Business Analysts are tasked with identifying system requirements and data requirements to enhance the performance of processes or facilitate the development of proprietary programs. From improving the performance of IT services’ performance and products to supporting daily operations, IT Business Analysts do it all. It is not just working on existing systems and data, but these analysts are also tasked with finding more viable solutions to technological challenges. For example, suppose the IT infrastructure needs to be upgraded, or hardware needs to be replaced. In that case, a business analyst can evaluate the business’s current performance and predict the difference they will notice once they adopt more modern systems. Accordingly, the analyst can then suggest that the stakeholders or managers go ahead with the upgrade.
Business analysts from all domains work closely with analytics, reporting, and recommending; thus, in IT as well, they are responsible for the same. The only difference is general business analysts are tasked with analyzing business processes while IT business analysts evaluate IT processes. They have a huge part to play in understanding the requirements of a business and then converting it into a reality. They act as a functional consultant who translates the stakeholders’ goals to the technical team and then keep track of the development status. This is especially important in CI/CD and other development pipelines. Analysts bridge the gap between the technical team and non-technical members while improving the efficiency of services, hardware, and business activities in general. Analysts use predictive tools, statistical tools (SAS), and software such as Tableau to carry out their daily activities.
Here is another example. When new batches of code are being committed into a repository by various teams, it is the job of an IT business analyst to analyze the current status of the development process and test out the viability of the current stack. This is important even if the commits are built concurrently in an automated fashion through the use of Ansible or Jenkins. There is a deep involvement of data analytics in development processes, and IT business analysts involved with these tasks are generally known as software analysts or programming analysts. However, for this task, general knowledge of programming is required. For many other IT-related or process-related tasks, coding is not compulsory.
What Does An IT Business Analyst Do?
IT Business analysts are assigned with the primary task of creating models and strategies that will help make IT processes more efficient and scalable with an immense focus on data. It is vital to plan out where data will be sourced from or how it will be generated, and it is crucial to design an adequate IT infrastructure that can use this data to its full potential. Analysts get tasked with coming up with new solutions and upgrading new systems. However, the actual upgrades and architectural design are not done by them as they are in charge of the strategy. Not just that, they must optimize the cost of the project and work with the finance department to see if it is feasible for the corporation.
Let’s take two examples. One will be of an existing IT-support process, and one will be of a new process. In the first example, the IT business analyst will evaluate the process’s current performance or production capability based on the requirements of the clients or stakeholders. The analyst will determine the best course of action. For instance, if more human assets need to be working on the floor to reach production targets, more computers should be installed with the respective Operating Systems.
Now, let us take the example of a new company that wishes to start a new IT process. Now, it will be the task of the business analyst to strategize how the company will go about it. The analyst will take factors such as hardware resources, server requirements, and the number of developers or support staff to develop the most effective solution for the process. Then, the analysts must report their findings to the stakeholders to confirm. IT business analysts are also in charge of identifying the potential problems they might face in the future and are also tasked with devising backups or strategies to handle technological hurdles. One such hurdle is scalability and flexibility. For instance, if a client wishes to upscale, the company must also be able to scale the IT process. Or in cases such as if a particular client wishes to switch to a different platform or work with more powerful systems. Once the strategy is confirmed, the analyst can find talented people, create a team, and then implement the plan.
Budgeting and forecasting are also a considerable part of an analyst’s job role. They must work tirelessly with the accounts department and management to ensure that the process meets the standards or margins set by the finance team or stakeholders. Sometimes, IT business analysts must also use Machine Learning and other advanced predictive systems. Thus, aside from the traditional knowledge of SQL, Microsoft Excel, or Tableau, they must also sometimes know programming languages such as Scala, R, Python. SAS, Microsoft Access, Microsoft Server, MariaDB, Hadoop, and MongoDB are some tools and technologies that IT business analysts use. However, IT business analysts who work with performance metrics and operations analytics may also use Business Intelligence tools such as Microsoft Power BI.
Here are the responsibilities of an IT business analyst:
- Analysts must understand business requirements and the data that is required. Then, they must outline the problems they will face and find solutions to these.
- They must understand how the data will be sourced or acquired. If any data is not available, they must figure out how to generate the data.
- They are tasked with evaluating if any hardware or IT infrastructure does not meet the requirements.
- Breaking down requirements and understanding the resources and personnel the process requires.
- Gathering teams and assigning roles.
- Analysts process, transform and clean the data.
- Data integration and data storage.
- Data warehousing, Data investigation and Data exploration.
- Data analysis, performance analysis and other operations analytics of investigative nature. This is also done to monitor existing processes and to determine if there are any changes that need to be made.
- IT business analysts also create models using statistical modelling or Machine Learning.
- Gaining insights from results.
- Being involved with budgeting, pricing, financial modelling and variance analysis.
- Communicating with stakeholders and decision-makers.
- Reporting results and making recommendations to optimise processes.
Why Pursue A Career In Business Analysis?
Business analysis has made optimizing processes and making products better much easier for companies around the world. It is a very lucrative domain for IT business analysts, with every middle-level corporation having an IT department and infrastructural requirements. As for individuals who wish to pursue any field of Business Analytics or Analysis, you will find an ample amount of career opportunities. Every corporation requires skilled business analysts who will support their businesses and help them increase their revenue. According to Statista, the IT consulting and implementation field will reach $57,521.3 million globally in 2021, a massive chunk of which will be going to IT business analysts who are working for IT consulting firms or in the internal analysis division of other companies. The annual growth rate (CAGR FY21-26) is 6.34% in this industry and the estimated market volume will reach $78,208.3 million by the financial year of 2026.
Companies are prepared to serve their clients, users, or customers better with IT business analysts. For example, when e-commerce businesses grow, IT business analysts are tasked with evaluating how much they need to scale and what hardware and infrastructural requirements they will need to serve a more extensive customer base. Let us imagine a bank contract with a few IT companies to support their backend processes. Now, the bank wishes to shift to a single contractor, thus requiring more human and hardware resources from the IT company. Let us also assume that the IT company has contracts with many other companies to provide IT or BPO services. The IT company must start acquiring more seats, systems, and personnel to support the bank’s process. This is where IT business analysts come in. According to Analytics India, in 2021, analytics will contribute to 23.4% of the IT and ITES market size in India. This is a 19% increase from last year, and at this incredible rate, this field will be responsible for 41.5% of India’s IT or ITES market by 2026.
Skilled analysts are always required in today’s market, with most local giants and MNCs requiring dozens and dozens of analysts. Smaller businesses and companies who are going online need dedicated servers or run middle-level BPO processes, and all need good business analysts. Companies that do IT consulting and implementation work also require IT Business Analysts. More than anyone can start their own IT consulting firm with ample experience as an IT business analyst.
IT Business Analyst Salary
Being an IT business analyst pays well. According to Glassdoor, the average IT business analyst salary in India is estimated to be Rs. 8,00,000 per annum. The median senior IT business analyst in India is also quite lucrative at Rs 12,00,000 annually, while analysts with a lot of experience (8 – 12 years) earn an average of Rs. 17,00,000. According to Payscale, on a global scale, the average annual salary of an IT business analyst is $74,000, with 75% earning an average of $97,000 per annum. There are plenty of IT business analyst jobs available, and most of these companies compensate their valuable analysts very well.
How To Become An IT Business Analyst
To become an IT business analyst requires a deep-rooted knowledge of computing, hardware, Operating Systems, mathematics, and statistics. Like other business analysts, IT Business analysts must learn different analytical software and tools such as Tableau, SAS, Power BI, and Excel. However, though programming languages such as R, Python, and Scala are not compulsory for other business analysts, they definitely come in handy for IT business analysts. You must also be able to use various repositories, container systems, and automation tools with ease. This is due to the need to work with development processes and collaborate with teams. Learning CI/CD concepts and being able to automate processes is very important nowadays as well. Thus, one must also learn Software Development Lifecycle, process mapping, and IT project management. Most companies follow the SCRUM development process; therefore, IT business analysts must learn SCRUM or Agile development methodologies.
Knowledge of IT infrastructure and cloud systems is essential for IT business analysts. If you are wondering about the degree you can pursue to join this specialized field, pursuing B.Tech or BCA might prove to be helpful. A Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in statistics will be immensely helpful too. Still, if you have pursued a degree in business, IT, or mathematics, you will find many things you have learned to be valuable as well. However, more than anything, an IT business Analytics course will help you out the most. Unlike traditional degree programs, in a specialized IT business Analytics course, you will learn the foundations of IT analytics and understand how important data is for IT processes and businesses in general. Regardless of the academic background, you can become a skilled IT business analyst by learning all the necessary tools and arming yourself with various analysis techniques such as variance analysis, PESTLE Analysis, or SWOT analysis. You must also learn effective IT process management and how to increase revenue, optimize hardware performance, increase output and make recommendations for better IT infrastructure. To become a successful IT business analyst, you must have the technical knowledge and the ability to make decisions for the business.
Here are some other skills you should have or tools that you should learn:
- Mathematics and Statistical concepts
- A/B Testing
- Data Visualisation
- Presentation and interpersonal skills
- Automation Tools such as Jenkins, Ansible etc.
- Automated Deployment and CI/CD
- Repositories such as Git and Containerised-applications systems
- Software Development Lifecycle and Agile Methodologies
- Data Mining
- Noise Removal
- DBMS and Database Administration
- Business Intelligence
- NoSQL, MongoDB and other non-relational Databases
- Big Data Architecture and Cloud Systems
- Operating Systems
- Data Mining
- Data Processing
- Data Governance
- Data modelling
- Process Modelling and System Design
- Machine Learning
FAQs- Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. Is business analyst IT a job?
IT business analysis is one of the top careers in today’s world. It is a specialized job that involves working with product development and the IT department but is a part of the business analysis domain. In a way it can be said that it is an ITES (IT Enabled Services) Job.
Q2. What is a business analyst in information technology?
A business analyst in IT is in charge of evaluating and improving the IT infrastructure, software products, or IT services inside a company. They can either belong to the IT department of a company from any sector or can belong to a team of people working in an IT company.
Q3. Does an IT analyst need coding?
Knowledge of coding is highly preferred to be an IT analyst unless you work with only physical IT infrastructure and hardware. Even then, to properly evaluate backend performance and integrate new hardware for IT processes, basic coding knowledge is always helpful. Additionally, for development processes, IT analysts need to work with System Architects or System Design teams, thus, making it essential to know to code to be indeed able to model systems or software products properly.
IT business analyst skills are highly in demand during this day and age. So, why wait? Please take this opportunity to learn IT business analyst skills and become involved with one of the most valuable domains of the foreseeable future. Being an IT business analyst pays well, and the job roles are incredibly satisfying as it requires working with a team and a lot of collaboration. The recommendations of business analysts are highly taken into consideration. There is a lot of communication with upper-level management and stakeholders, thus making this role even more desirable.
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If you are a beginner or working professional aspiring for career growth, please understand that the term Business Analyst is extremely popular and used interchangeably across the domains. This blog helps to understand what an IT business analyst is, but you may also be interested in knowing what a Business Analyst does in the analytics domain.
It would be of interest to many to know that a career in Business Analytics is a highly lucrative and fast growth track both in India and abroad.
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