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The Future of Christchurch’s Business Analysts

The Future of Christchurch’s Business Analysts

What does the future hold for Christchurch’s Business Analysts? OCG’s Technology Recruitment Manager, Paul
O’Donovan, shares his insight into the changing role of a BA and what professionals need to do to stay relevant.

Over the last twelve months’ the need for business analysis skills in the Canterbury region has increased significantly. A trend is emerging that is impacting professionals in that space. What organisations need from their Business Analysts has evolved. As a result, employers have adjusted what skills and experiences they look for when hiring new BAs. Consequently, ‘traditional’ IT Business Analysts have been missing out on opportunities which historically they would have been ideal for. Before I highlight how you can keep your skills and experience relevant, let’s first look at what has been driving this change within the market.

The Changing Role of a Business Analyst

In a normal circumstance when technology change is required, a BA would be hired to work with the business stakeholders on behalf of the IT team, to ensure that the technology delivery would meet the needs of the business, and its customers. That relationship is changing within many organisations. Although organisations are still hiring Business Analysts to implement and manage technology transformation, an increasing number of BAs are being hired directly by business stakeholders to work on their behalf, representing their interests into the IT department.

The growing pressure for organisations to provide superior products and faster services for their customers has been the primary driver behind these changes. Organisations involved in the Christchurch rebuild are feeling additional pressure to deliver smart business change. In response to that pressure, last year a large number of organisations in Christchurch began to reengineer their internal systems, processes and structures.

Today, the demand for Business Analysts who can identify the wider impact of strategic transformation, effectively manage and implement change, and build stronger relationships with a greater variety of stakeholders is exponentially rising. So, it’s crucial to realign your skillset with market demand to stay relevant.

What Business Analysts Can Do to Stay Relevant

For Business Analysts to comfortably move away from IT and towards strategic transformation, they need a wider understanding of what their employer does and how they do it. This will allow them to ascertain the stakeholders true requirements and whether the delivery of a solution is really in the organisation’s best interests. Developing strong business skills is not easy, however taking the time to cultivate relationships with key individuals in other departments is a good start. Learning what other departments aim to achieve and the core processes they must follow to do that, can help you to gain a better understanding of how change can affect them.

Although change management and business analysis are two separate disciplines, more employers are looking for professionals who can do both. If this component of business transformation is not part of your current role, you should discuss with your Manager whether being involved in managing and implementing change is a possibility.

As business analysis moves into other business units within organisations, it’s going to be crucial that you can demonstrate your ability to bridge gaps between departments and build strong relationships with all your stakeholders.

Summary

Whilst it’s not too late for professionals to react to the shift in what employers are looking for when recruiting Business Analysis roles, this transformation will continue as businesses look for better project outcomes. It’s an exciting time to be in the business analysis space in Christchurch and there are plenty of opportunities available. If you’re a BA who needs advice on how to secure their next great role, don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Paul O'Donovan

Paul O'Donovan | Manager - OCG Technology Christchurch

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