Wondering if a business analyst course is worth your time? Well, the business analysis field is flourishing way more than you think! The business analyst market is expected to reach a valuation of 103.65 billion USD by 2026, with a CAGR of 7.3 percent over 2021-2026. Moreover, traditional business processes often fail to ensure success in times of economic distress. But, business analysis ensures that data-driven changes to products and services are not only efficient and effective but also profitable to the enterprise.
So, if you wish to explore this field and are thinking of making a career then you can apply for a Postgraduate Business Analysis Program. Let us now look at this comprehensive guide on the benefits of learning business analysis and the top 5 business analyst books that are a must-read!
Why Learn Business Analysis?
Before we go on to the book suggestions that every business analyst should read, let’s look at the importance of learning business analysis and taking a business analyst course:
- Understanding the organizational needs and ensuring that the recommendations of the technical experts conform with the stakeholders’ needs
- Understanding the roles and responsibilities of business analysts towards fulfilling the needs of the organization
- Assessing and solving pertinent business-related problems by understanding the fundamental theories underlying business analysis
- Helping in risk management while at the same time improving performance and adding value to the business
But, how can a business analyst achieve the above mentioned goals? Well, reading relevant books is a good start!
Top 5 Business Analyst Books To Read
Here is a list of the top 5 must-read books for business analysts to help them understand the various aspects of business analysis.
- A Guide to the Business Analysis Book of Knowledge (BABOK), IIBA
If there is a global standard for books on business analysis, then it is the BABOK Guide. The book covers the major concepts that most business analysts work with: information technology, business intelligence, Agile, business process management, and business architecture.
Besides, the BABOK Guide provides a neat structure with the six key knowledge areas organized into an accessible and easily referenced format. These key knowledge areas are business analysis, planning and monitoring, requirements life cycle management, elicitation and collaboration, requirements analysis and design definition, strategy analysis, and solution evaluation. Overall, the guide provides an exhaustive synopsis of contemporary business analysis and is the most up-to-date standard for business analysts or professionals taking a business analyst course.
- The PMI Guide to Business Analysis
Another must-read book for business analysts is this gem of a guide from the Project Management Institute that serves as the foundational standard for portfolio, program, and project management. The book illustrates how project management and business analysis processes are complementary but have different focus areas – for project management, it is the project and for business analysis, it is the product.
Further, the guide is a comprehensive body of knowledge about the environmental determinants of business analysis. Also, it talks about how business analysis is a broad skill set that can be adapted by any organization in any industrial domain and throughout the sequence of project delivery methods. In addition, the guide contains Agile analysis techniques such as the Kano model and the product roadmap.
- How to Start a Business Analyst Career, Laura Brandenburg
If you feel lost about approaching a business analyst career, then this book by Laura Brandenburg is your best guide. Brandenburg reaffirms the fact that while there is no standard recipe for becoming a successful business analyst, a structured approach can help you kickstart your career. Regardless of your background or the industry you are associated with, landing a business analyst job role is not impossible, and this book makes it quite clear.
Laura Brandenburg is a blogger and consultant who has been engaged with the analyst industry for years. Her writings draw inspiration from her shift from the publishing and editing industry to business analysis and have encouraged many to opt for business analysis as a career path.
- Agile and Business Analysis: Practical guidance for IT professionals, Lynda Girvan and Debra Paul
The use of the Agile framework in business analysis has become a core practice that every business analyst should be familiar with. So, if you need a thorough introduction to the Agile techniques, this guide by Girvan and Paul is an excellent place to start.
Be it increased engagement of stakeholders, understanding and responding to customer needs, or measuring success, Agile analysis has a number of benefits in the business. The book not only provides a clear presentation of the Agile methodologies, but also explains Agile from the perspective of business analysis. The book is a valuable resource for those working within the Agile framework, who need to understand Agile practices and take a business analyst course.
- CBAP/CCBA Certified Business Analysis Study Guide, Second Edition
If you have taken a business analyst course and are preparing for the Certification of Competency in Business Analysis (CCBA) and Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) exams conducted by the IIBA, then the second edition of the CBAP/CCBA Certified Business Analysis Study Guide will provide complete coverage of all the exam objectives.
In addition to covering the six knowledge areas defined in the BABOK Guide, this book includes guidance on all underlying competencies from leading experts. Not just that, the book is tailor-made for CCBA and CBAP aspirants with topic summaries, practice questions, tips, and tricks, and objective mapping, providing a solid framework to bolster your exam preparation. Overall, it is a compact and personalized study guide to honing your business analysis skills.
Business analysis has emerged as one of the core business practices in today’s unpredictable market situation. No matter the enterprise size or industry domain, a business analyst is a crucial link between an organization’s business objectives and its IT capabilities. So, if you see yourself as a business analyst contributing towards the profitability and stability of a business, then a business analyst course is the best way to start with the indispensable must-read books as invaluable guides throughout your journey.