10 Most Common Business Analyst Interview Questions

Preparing for a Business Analyst Job Interview? Here are a few tips and the most useful and common business analyst interview questions that you might face. 

Before attending an interview for a business analyst position, one should be through about their previous experience in the projects handled and results achieved. The types of questions asked generally revolve around situational and behavioural acumen. The interviewer would judge both knowledge and listening skills from the answers one presents. 

The most common business analyst interview questions are:

 

1. How do you categorize a requirement to be a good requirement?

A good requirement is the one that clears the SMART criteria, i.e., 

Specific – A perfect description of the requirement, specific enough to be easily understandable

Measurable – The requirement’s success is measurable using a set of parameters

Attainable – Resources are present to achieve requirement success

Relevant – States the results that are realistic and achievable

Timely – The requirement should be revealed in time 

business analyst interview questions

 

2. List out the documents used by a Business Analyst in a project?

The various documents used by a Business Analyst are:

a. FSD – Functional Specification Document

b. Technical Specification Document

c. Business Requirement Document 

d. Use Case Diagram

e. Requirement Traceability Matrix, etc.

 

3. What is the difference between BRD and SRS?

SRS (Software Requirements Specifications) – is an exhaustive description of a system that needs to be developed and describes the software – user interactions. While a BRD (Business Requirements Document) is a formal agreement for a product between the organization and the client. 

The difference between the two are:

business analyst interview questions

 

4. Name and briefly explain the various diagrams used by a Business Analyst.

Activity Diagram – It is a flow diagram representing the transition from one activity to another. Here activity is referred to the specific operation of the system.

Data Flow Diagram – It is a graphical representation of the data flowing in and out of the system. The diagram depicts how data is shared between organizations

Use Case Diagram – Also known as Behavioural diagram, the use case diagram depicts the set of actions performed by the system with one or more actors (users).

Class Diagram – This diagram depicts the structure of the system by highlighting classes, objects, methods, operations, attributes, etc. It is the building block for detailed modelling used for programming the software.

Entity Relationship Diagram – It is a data modelling technique and a graphical representation of the entities and their relationships. 

Sequence Diagram – It describes the interaction between the objects. 

Collaboration Diagram – It represents the communication flow between objects by displaying the message flow among them.

 

5. Name different actors in a use case diagram?

Broadly, there are two types of actors in a use-case:

a. Primary Actors – Start the process

b. Secondary Actors – assist the primary actor

They can further be categorized as:

i. Human

ii. System

iii. Hardware

iv. Timer

 

6. Describe ‘INVEST’.

The full form of INVEST is Independent, Negotiable, Valuable, Estimable, Sized Appropriately, Testable. With this process, the technical teams and project managers to deliver quality products or services.

 

7. What is Pareto Analysis

Also known as the 80/20 rule, Pareto Analysis is an effective decision-making technique for quality control. As per this analysis, it is inferred that 80% effects in a system are a result of 20% causes, hence the name 80/20 rule.

 

8. Describe the Gap Analysis.

It is utilized to analyze gaps between the existing system and its functionalities against the targeted system. The gap is inferred to the number of changes and tasks that need to be brought in to attain the targeted system. It compares performance between the present and the targeted functionalities.

 

9. Name different types of gaps that could be encountered while Gap Analysis

There are mainly four types of gaps:

a. Performance Gap – Gap between expected and actual performance

b. Product/ Market Gap – Gap between budgeted and actual sales numbers

c. Profit Gap – Variance between targeted and actual profit

d. Manpower Gap – Gap between required and actual strength and quality of the workforce in the organization

 

10. What are the various techniques used in requirement prioritization?

Requirement prioritization, as the name suggests, is a process of assigning priorities to the requirements based on business urgency in different schedules, phases, and cost among others.

The techniques for requirement prioritization are:

a. Requirements Ranking Method

b. Kano Analysis

c. 100 Dollar Method

d. MoSCoW Technique

e. Five Whys

 

Stay tuned to this page for more such information on interview questions and career assistance. If you are not confident enough yet and want to prepare more to grab your dream job as a Business Analyst, upskill with Great Learning’s PG program in Business Analytics and Business Intelligence, and learn all about Business Analytics along with great career support.

The only resolution you should be making in 2017

Every New Year brings with it the hope of a new beginning in our lives and along with it, come the myriad of resolutions we make to ourselves. Research indicates that most of the resolutions made by people are towards fitness and weight loss. As a result, January becomes a windfall month for most gymnasiums and fitness studios while most of us don’t become any leaner or fitter with passing years the one thing that we can definitely achieve is being a better version of ourselves. To achieve that you don’t have to make tall promises to yourself just Make Learning a Habit.

Learning new things is simple, achievable and one of the most profitable investments you can make each year.

 

1. Learning is like weight-loss

train

Let me make an uncanny analogy here: Aspiring to becoming leaner is very similar to wanting to learn something new. Ultimately, you have to change something that’s core in your behaviour to have the desired results. Both these goals need focus, determination and lots of discipline. And lastly, just as in weight loss as in education, there are no low-hanging fruits or express results. Both take time to fructify, but once you go the distance, there is no looking back.

 

2. Why ‘Learning’ in 2017?

Why we need to learn in 2017

The right question here should be ‘Why Not’. There has never been a better time to learn and frankly speaking, with the changing dynamics of businesses and technology disruption impacting us, if we don’t make learning a habit in 2017 and onwards, our professional credentials would be questionable at best and irrelevant at worst. Learning new skills and upgrading one’s professional capabilities is no longer a matter of choice but a necessity to have a fruitful career. In today’s time and age, the half-life of knowledgehalf-life of knowledge is forever decreasing which means that one needs to keep learning always to stay professionally relevant. The new reality is that what you learn at 25, will not take you till 35.

 

3. What should I learn?

What should you learn

This is like standing by an ocean and trying to find the perfect starting point for your swim. What you can learn is limited only by your intellectual bandwidth and interest. For the sake of brevity, let us focus on what the professional in you needs to learn. Depending upon the industry you are in or aspire to be in, you need to understand the trends that are driving growth. If you are unclear about it, you should talk to your seniors from the industry and pick their brains. Pick an area that is affecting most companies in your space and eventually will impact everyone and build your skill sets in that. Professional competencies such as analytics, big data engineering, product management, information security, intellectual property, digital marketing etc. are high growth areas where most companies are struggling for ‘good’ talent. Finding a sweet spot like this and making yourself competent in it will ensure your career benefits from this talent shortage.

 

4. Where should I learn?

e-learning

Learning in 2017 will be easier than ever before. From blogs to YouTube or TED, from companies offering online learning to mobile apps, ‘lack of access’ cannot be your excuse to not learning. But having said that, having a plethora of options makes it overwhelming and confusing.

I come across some candidates who know what the skills they need to acquire but are not sure if they will be able to learn. I usually advise them to first test the waters by accessing some free content online. YouTube is usually a good source for this. See if you like what you are learning and are able to grasp it.

 

5. Why do we fail to learn online?

why we fail to learn

If you are the kind that does not suffer from such starting troubles, you will usually find your learning options to be either completely online courses or blended courses (online + occasional weekend classroom sessions). Given this spread, how do you decide which format to go for?

Completely online courses provide convenience since you don’t need to attend any classroom sessions. But, online learning has been plagued by abysmally low rates of completion. The main reason for this is that for most of us, we learn better when we learn in a classroom setting with peers and faculty, who we can talk to in person.

The flexibility of attending class room sessions over few weekends in a month gives you the advantage of mixing the best of two worlds – the flexibility of online learning and the learning effectiveness of classroom learning. In our blended analytics program, we have seen hundreds of candidates do our program after having done one or multiple online courses. When asked, the most common response we get is because they feel that their learning in the online programs was incomplete. Also, when it comes to acquiring hard skills such as analytics, big data or machine learning, it is important to focus on programs that are more exhaustive and immersive and don’t take a superficial approach by promising to teach something in a matter of some hours.

 

6. What will it take?

learning in 2017

Learning is for everyone. Amongst the thousands of candidates who take our programs every year, we see about 30% of them to be with in the 15-30 year experience bracket. While there is no age to imbibe the habit of learning, just like with all good habits, the sooner you do it, the better you are. Having said that, learning is hard work. Depending upon when was the last time you were in a class, you would need discipline, focus and perseverance to go the whole distance. Usually, we have seen that the first two months are the hardest but once you settle into a routine within the first sixty days, you will go one to achieve the results you desire. The advice that we give to all our learners is to start small. Begin by dedicating an hour every day for the first 2 weeks, then about 8-10 hours a week for the next thirty days. Small changes in your habit will ultimately lead to big gains in your learning and professional success.

On that note, in 2017, make a promise to yourself. To learn something new and to challenge your professional status quo. Make Learning a habit and build the career you’ve always wanted. Oh and as for fitness, try playing a sport – 5 days a week. It is fun and just as effective (or ineffective) 🙂