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New Post 8/12/2007 2:16 PM
User is offline Adrian M.
764 posts
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Re: From Developer in India to Business Analyst Abroad 
Modified By Adrian M.  on 8/12/2007 3:16:43 PM)

One of my recent blog articles From Developer in India to Business Analyst Abroad generated a number of comments, some positive and some more constructive.  ;-)  Thank you to those who commented - your opinions are important and appreciated.

  On 8/11/07 Brelmoi wrote

There's a huge fundamental problem with this post/proposal: First, it assumes as do 99% of us in America wrongly, that all Indians are actually good developers let alone BAs. Just because someone is Indian, He/She isn't automatically IT bound. Assuming that the person is a good coder, does that automatically make them a BA? Hardly. This is the mistake that many companies, including one where I was a V.P before the .com bubble, continue to make. BA is about COMMUNICATING CLEARLY. Indian coders are neither good writers nor clear speakers. Let's be honest, we can't understand them half of the time. If you think I'm a racist you'd be wrong. I've hired many qualified indians and unfortunately some not so qualified. What I mean here is they were fakes. Yes. Great looking resumes. Answered all the questions well but were terrible BAs. Why? Because there's a new industry run by indians offering "training classes". They teach these guys how to be a BA in 3/4 week-ends!!! We're talking about people who've never even worked in IT. They then give them a great looking resume. Yes call it resume mills. They then go memorize books about methodologies, etc. This is where I go back to hiring people that ace the interview but suck once you bring them in. They have the theory but not the practice. In the last 2 years I've seen about 12 indian BAs walked out of companies for getting caught for this type of fraud. This obviously is costing companies 100s of $ millions considering that 99% of these BAs are H1 contractors at a cost of around $90/hr. It is then ironic that we welcome these fraudsters with open arms, get them H1 visas and everthing else just because they've managed to feed us the notion that if you're indian you're an IT genius. While we want to deport the Mexicans who are making $5/hr and aren't taking high paying jobs from Americans through fraud. So from somone who's worked with many Indians, here are the facts: in the Ba arena, if they're American born or came here at an early age, they can make great BAs regardless of their background. Generally speaking, let's be honest: coders of any race are usually loners and have no personality. If you're a BA and you're telling me that personality doesn't count in this field, I can only guess that you're a former coder.

Dear Brelmoi,

First of all, allow me to agree with you!  ;-)  Not all Indians are IT bound less alone developer focused.  That is why I started my article with “If you are an IT professional in India…” 

I also agree with you that if one is a good coder it does not, by any means, imply that person will be a good business analyst – far from it.  That is why I suggested that the readers  “might want to consider” being a business analyst or systems analyst.  And, of course, I completely agree with you that to be good business analyst you need good communication skills as well as good analytical/problem solving skills.  The analyst role is not for everyone.

I understand your frustration with resumes which are less then representative.  As a manager of business/systems analysts I come across these types of resumes on a daily basis.  And in these cases I tend to blame the staffing agencies more than the candidates.  It is their responsibility to ensure that the candidates they submit for the BA role actually have the needed experience and skills to perform the work.

However – I do not agree with you that if you are American or if you came to America at an early age you’ll make a great Business Analyst.  Being American, Indian, or any other nationality for that matter, has nothing to do with being a great BA.  If you have good communication skills, good analytical/problem solving skills, and enjoy working with and improving business and IT systems then you will probably make a good Business Analyst.

Q: What about good developers/coders,  can they become good business analysts? 

A: Sure they can! 

Q: All of them? 

A: Of course not!

The answer becomes clearer if we take a look at the more detailed roles an analyst could fulfill such as business analyst vs. systems analyst (I’m trying to keep it is simple).

In my experience, Systems Analysts (those analysts who take the requirements and bring them to life in a functional design) which come from a developer background have and advantage over those who do not.  They are familiar and comfortable with IT systems and how they work which makes it easier (not a given) for them to create functional specifications.

If we are discussing Business Analysts (those analysts who work with the business to understand the business problems and create requirements) then things change a bit.  In my experience, people with a strong business background and understanding of how the business works have a leg up on those analysts which only have a technical background.

Like almost everything in live, things are not as black and white as we would like them to be.  This is also the case for the business analyst role.  Or should I say business systems analyst?

Best regards!

 - Adrian


Adrian Marchis
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