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New Post 5/10/2008 9:18 PM
User is offline Hngo006
2 posts
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Economics major seeking to get foot in the door 

Hi,

    I will be graduating soon at UC Riverside here in Fall with a BA in Business Economics, I have taken many statistics courses including econometrics and multi-variable calculus.  I was wondering what is the best step for me to get my foot in the door for a business analyst career?  I dont have much relevent work experience, except for retail and then starting my own business for a year.

Thanks

Hung

 
New Post 5/11/2008 12:13 AM
User is offline Guy Beauchamp
257 posts
www.smart-ba.com
5th Level Poster




Re: Economics major seeking to get foot in the door 

Hung,


In my experience Junior BAs usually aren't born - they mutate! The scenario I am thinking of is how I came to be a BA and one I have seen in my capacity as trainer many times: people from IT or the Business get a reputation for problem solving and get dumped in to the role when circumstances in their company change. Sometimes they jump in to the role but most often they seem to be dumped.

The question is - how did they get a reputation for problem solving? Answer: they were working alongside or even in change projects in some capacity and as a problem arose, they analysed it, solved it and got the reputation. So there may be a strategy for you here: instead of looking for junior BA roles look for roles that involve working alongside projects (e.g. project management office) - here in the UK for example there are always loads of temp agencies trying to fill these positions. Once in a project, make sure you have researched the role of a BA and know the outline of the theory at the very least. Then do your day job, watch and wait for your opportunity and start volunteering to help BAs, sort out requirements issues and so on. Get a few months of that under your belt and then you can update your CV to reflect that you have actually been doing analysis, and you might even be able to transfer in the organisation you have been gaining experience in.

You can then start applying for BA roles with the justification of having done the job even though you haven't been called a BA.

Oh - the other things are

1. get testimonials (preferably from Project Managers and BAs)

2. keep copies of the analytical work you do: suitable anonymised.

Nothing impresses interviewers like examples of your own analysis and testimonials if you can get get them (I haven't been refused one yet!).

I hope this is useful!

Guy

 
New Post 5/12/2008 12:16 PM
User is offline Adrian M.
755 posts
3rd Level Poster




Re: Economics major seeking to get foot in the door 

 Hngo006 wrote

Hi,

    I will be graduating soon at UC Riverside here in Fall with a BA in Business Economics, I have taken many statistics courses including econometrics and multi-variable calculus.  I was wondering what is the best step for me to get my foot in the door for a business analyst career?  I dont have much relevent work experience, except for retail and then starting my own business for a year.

Thanks

Hung

Hi Hung,

There are many flavors of "Business Analyst".  Some are closer to the business (i.e. business process analyst) and some are closer to the technology (i.e. systems analyst).  Given your background in business economics and your interest in statistics and multi-variable calculus, it looks like you might want to focus on looking on positions related to Business Intelligence, Financial Analysis, or Business Process Analysis.

Guy provide some good advice for you.  You should try to get your foot in the door on the business side first.  In order to be an effect business analyst you need gain some business experience.  So look to gain some business process and operations experience in a vertical industry/domain of your choice.  Then you can begin working on improvement projects as SME (Subject Matter Expert).

- Adrian


Adrian Marchis
Business Analyst Community Blog - Post your thoughts!
 
New Post 5/14/2008 12:45 AM
User is offline Hngo006
2 posts
No Ranking


Re: Economics major seeking to get foot in the door 

Hi,

Thanks for the advice, I have a couple questions, what do you mean by vertical industries?  Can you give me an example of a certain company?  Maybe I should start off somthing in an investment company or finance even though the pay is about 30-40k?  I really am lost on what variables I should be looking for when first starting out in somthing non-analytical based and moving on to somthing that is an analytical based job.

Hung

 
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