Business Analyst Interview Questions

1. What is Business Analysis?
Answer: Business Analysis is the set of tasks, knowledge, and techniques required to identify business needs and determine solutions to enterprise business problems. Although the general definition is similar, the practices and procedures may vary in various industries.

In the Information technology industry, solutions often include a systems development component, but may also consist of process improvement or organizational change.

The business analysis may also be performed to understand the current state of an organization or to serve as a basis for the identification of business needs. In most cases, however, business analysis is performed to define and validate solutions that meet business needs, goals, or objectives.

2. List the elicitation techniques in business analysis?
Answer: Elicitation is a practice of collecting requirements from end customers, stakeholders, it is a requirement gathering process. Various techniques are involved such as :

  • Brainstorming
  • Document analysis
  • Focus group
  • Interface analysis
  • Interview
  • Observation
  • Prototyping
  • Requirements Workshop
  • Reverse Engineering
  • Survey

3. Describe The Importance Of An Activity Diagram?
Answer: This is the diagram used in a business system to show the workflow involved, activities happening as well as the completed actions. In a company comprising of several departments e.g. the medical department, accounting department, and even the human resource department, usually each department has its peculiar privileges to the system, for instance the medical department can only be allowed to access the screens related to their activities such as medical records while the human resource department will be allowed to view only the screens which are relevant to them too, thus these activity diagrams assist in showing the relationship between particular activities with their relevant and related departments so that during coding, the coders may refer to them to implement the discrepancies accordingly. Designers too can be guided by these activity diagrams.

4. How Do You Resolve Issues?
Answer:
I would rather focus on issues and the facts related. Origin of issue, the severity of the issue, implications and possible solutions to solve the issue. Try not to focus on the person who brought up the issue. Another important part is how to avoid similar issues in the future.

5. Ba Is The Bridge Between The It And Non-it Persons When It Comes A Software System. Does It Mean That Decision Making Responsibility Can Be Rested His Hand Entirely?
Answer:
No, that is not the advisable case. Every DBA has to decide the business/technical aspects of a project only after discussions and meetings with the appropriate members of the team. In this way meetings and team, the discussion comes off as the most important aspects of BA’s decision-making capabilities.

6. Why is benchmarking required?
Answer: It is required to set standards for a company. It helps match policies with performance. It is required to set standards for a company. It helps match policies with performance.

7. What is the use case model?
Answer:
A business analysis presentation of the steps involved in defining the interactions between a user (actor) and a system (computer system) is termed as a use case model. It gives details on the interactions and sets the expectations of how the user will work within the system.

The use case model consists of 2 main elements:

  • Use case diagram – It is a graphical representation that details which actors can operate which use cases
  • Use case description – It is a detailed textual step by step presentation of interactions and dialogue between the actor and the system.

8. What do you think are the key strengths of a Business Analyst?
Answer: Your answer to this question should show your interviewer that you understand what skills and abilities are necessary for success. A good answer to strength and weakness interview questions should include some examples of the hard and soft skills necessary in your profession:

“Technical skills like a strong aptitude for numbers and an ability to quickly pick up new systems and technology are key, but so are people skills like communication, facilitation, and negotiation skills.”

9. How is it different from other Professions?
Answer: Business analysis is distinct from financial analysis, project management, quality assurance, organizational development, testing, training, and documentation development. However, depending on the organization, a Business Analyst may perform some or all these related functions.

Business analysts who work solely on developing software systems may be called IT business analysts, technical business analysts, online business analysts, business systems analysts, or systems analysts.

The business analysis also includes the work of liaison among stakeholders, development teams, testing teams, etc.

10. In how many categories do business analysis techniques exist?
Answer:
There are over 100 business techniques that a business analyst can select when facilitating the business. These are categorized as strategic, investigative, analytical, project management, documentation, and modeling techniques.

11. What do you think is better: the waterfall or spiral model?
Answer: Although this question might seem like its looking for a simple definition, think again.

You’re listening for in-depth knowledge of both project management processes. Someone capable in the analyst position should be able to compare and contrast both methods, voice a preference for one, and argue why – even if their preference is different than yours. They should also be able to explain in which cases the spiral model is preferred by a project manager and in which cases the waterfall project management model might be a better choice, and what is at stake if the correct model is not used, and describe the project life cycle under each.

12. Why are you interested in this company?
Answer: Your interviewer knows you’re probably interviewing with other companies, but she wants to know, “Why us?” This is your chance to demonstrate a genuine interest in the company and opportunity by showing off what you know. This is a common business analyst interview question that you can prepare for ahead of time by doing your research. Recent company news and the company website are a great place to start to prepare an answer like the following:

“I want to work for this company because I associate with your commitment to sustainability. Working for a company that has a genuine commitment to sustainable practices has always been a goal for me, and I know I would conduct my work with the same approach.” 

13. What is your understanding of the SDLC?
Answer: The hiring manager wants to ascertain how involved you’ve been in past projects, and will probably throw a few Business Analyst interview questions that can explore this. Most employers are looking for Business Analysts with end-to-end project experience so being able to demonstrate your understanding of scoping a project, all the way through to go-live will be highly desirable, if not essential.

Rather than listing numerous projects and processes, talk more about the general phases or types of deliverables you might create, while letting the hiring manager know you can customize your approaches to projects.

Prospective employers love to hear about what you have learned from the projects you have worked on so make sure you share examples of creativity and adaptability.

14. What according to you are the major problems that a business can face in the present time?
Answer: Businesses are becoming more and more challenging at present. This is mainly because there are a lot of problems and issues they need to deal with to overcome the gap between the clients and the products. The main issue is finding the target audience. Marketing advertisements and campaigns don’t let businesses get the desired outcome when they lack it. In addition to this, there can be problems with quality. Moreover, anything that is enhancing the gap between a customer and an organization is nothing but the problems businesses usually face.

15. Do you think that a Business Analyst should have technical knowledge?
Answer: The Business Analyst has to access a lot of technology to find solutions to the problems concerned with the business. It is not always possible for them to depend on the other resources or employees for accessing the same. Thus, they must have good knowledge about the same. If a business analyst is from an IT background, there is nothing wrong to say that innovative solutions to the problems can also be assured by the organizations.

16. How can you categorize the problems that are mainly related to a business?
Answer:

The problems can be classified into the following:

1. Employees- Issues
2. Technology-related problems
3. Lack of access to the resources
4. Outdated Business systems/policies
5. Business model errors

17. How well can you explain the System Analysis in a business?
Answer: It is nothing but a simple process of interpretation of the business needs and all the rules imposed by the management for the use of technical systems. The restrictions and the boundations largely matters and businesses should pay very close attention to the same. (Business Analyst Interview Questions)

18. Do you think a Business analyst should be engaged in testing and integrating new solutions?
Answer: Of course, this is because a business analyst has the right knowledge about the challenges associated with most of the tasks. Very useful information can be driven and the testing procedures can be made more useful. In addition to this, a business analyst can simply guide an organization on what better can be done in a solution while it is under a test.

19. As a Business Analyst, what is your role in an organization?
Answer:
A Business Analyst plays a vital role in a project for an organization.

i) The main role of a Business Analyst is to find out the needs of an organization, finding out their problems, even predicting future issues to an extent and suggesting suitable solutions for the same and drive through the organization’s achievements.

ii) Business Analyst role varies from organization to organization, project to project and even from domain to domain.

iii) BA in a project can play the role of a Business Planner, System Analyst, Data Analyst, Organization Analyst, Application Designer, Subject Area Expert, Technical Architect, etc.

iv) Core skills of a BA are a good grip on system engineering concepts, leadership qualities, technical knowledge, writing, and verbal communications.

v) BA’s job may vary as per the employer’s requirement like some are limited to IT projects, even few of them extend their responsibilities to areas such as finance, marketing, accounting, etc.

20. Differentiate a Risk and an issue?
Answer:
‘Risk’ is nothing but a problem or something that can be predicted earlier so that some improvement plans are used to handle them. Whereas an ‘Issue’ means the risk that had happened or occurred.

The role of a BA is not to solve the issue instead should suggest some plans to control the loss/damage caused. And this should be marked as a precautionary measure for other projects.

Example: On some roads, few caution boards are stating that “Road under repair, take diversion”. This is called Risk.

If we travel through the same route which is under repair, then there caused some damage to the vehicle. This is called an issue. 

21. What does INVEST mean?
Answer: INVEST means Independent, Negotiable, Valuable, Estimable, Sized Appropriately, Testable. With this INVEST process, the project managers and technical teams can deliver the good quality of the product and can provide quality service.

22. What are Project deliverables?
Answer:
The project deliverables are the set of measurable goods and services that are delivered to the end customer after the project. It is the outcome of the project.

23. What is your requirement elicitation strategy?
Answer: The elicitation strategy depends upon the type of the project.

One can take advantage of direct collaboration with the client and have facilitated workshops, interviews and observe the end-users. In conjunction, we can use techniques that provide us with more precise information like prototype and scenario building.

24. Who Uses The Output Produced By Business Analyst?
Answer:
The output will be used by Both IT and Non-IT People, as IT people use this document as key for the building of the application and Non-IT people use those documents where they can see a prototype of their application.

25. What Is The Educational Qualification Required For A Business Analyst?
Answer:
There is no specific qualification for a business analyst. Well, if you are a management graduate it is an added advantage since they have better communication skills. One important thing a BA needs to have is domain knowledge or business knowledge. Unless he/she understands the client’s business process thoroughly they cannot draft the requirements properly. 

26. Why Is Business Analyst Position Vital In An Organization?
Answer:
The position is important because a BA is a people’s person when it comes to the users and an IT person when it comes to the developers. He can communicate with the users in jargon that they are comfortable with and can understand them to collect solid business requirements. Simultaneously he can effectively communicate these requirements and support them with the documentation for a developer’s benefit.

27. What Is The Relationship Between Use Case And Test Case?
Answer:
A use case is written from a “user” perspective describing the interaction of a piece of software between the user and the software. These are written in common language typically from the business or user point of view and in enough detail for the developer to create a piece of software. Typically written in an MS Word type tool. Use cases capture the functional requirements of the system. It describes the expected interaction the user will experience, in detail. The audience is the business, for signoff, and technology for development. 

28. What Do You Understand By The Term Uml?
Answer:
The term UML is an abbreviation of the term Unified Modeling Language which is the standard language used in the construction of as well as visualization and documentation of varied system components. It has a collection of graphical notation techniques used in the development of abstract models for certain specific systems.

29. What is the typical role of a Business Analyst, what does he do and what are his responsibilities?
Answer:

  1. This is a typical question that would be quintessential to be answered by every candidate who is appearing for the job.
  2. The most important responsibility of a business analyst, you could sum up as saying would be that of an excellent communication conduit.
  3. He or she would be required to conduct this smooth communication between the actual stakeholders and the entire team that is present. Remember, it depends upon organization to organization to answer such a question.
  4. Thus basic research about the company you are giving an interview is a must. You can choose from these points when you are answering the requirements of the responsibilities for the interview.
  5. Thoroughly investigating various goals and small issues.
    Detailed analysis of information.
    Rapport and being in talks with a wide variety of people.
    Document findings and research.
    Evaluating good solutions.

30. What is the difference between re-insurance and insurance claim handling?
Answer:

  • Such tricky questions can be asked with the sole purpose of being too out of the candidate on a big worry-cycle.
  • The answer the employer expecting is a direct answer which you as a probable candidate can mess up if you are tensed about it. Remember an interview is there just to know how confident you are.
  • Thus, you must be completely aware of the difference that exists between an Insurance claim and reinsurance claims.
  • An insurance claim is something that is settled in the company whereas a re-insurance claim would be a thing that is settled by Reinsurance Company.

31. Do you think a business analyst should be involved in testing?
Answer:
Yes. Because a business analyst understands the overall system requirements and challenges associated with it very well. Hence, he can be instrumental during the testing phase to run it appropriately and resolve any system-related query.

32. Which model is better than the Waterfall model and Spiral Model?
Answer:
Selecting the life cycle model for a project is based on its type, scope, and limitations. It is solely dependent on the culture of the organization, its terms, and conditions, policies, a process of developing the system, etc.

33. What is the feasibility study?
Answer: The requirements and problems of the Business/ project should be studied and understood by a BA and he should set a scope for the business problem. A feasibility study is identifying the possibility(success rate) of the proposed idea for a business problem. It helps to identify new opportunities and focus on the project.

34. How do you define the role of a BA in an organization?
Answer:

  • A business analyst is a liaison between different stakeholders in an organization. He acts as a bridge, a connector and helps the complete project teamwork as a tightly integrated unit.
  • Since stakeholders belong to different domains (e.g. finance, business, marketing) a business analyst needs to be able to sort and balance the needs of these stakeholders while fulfilling the business objectives at the same time.

35. Tell us the difference between an alternate flow and an exception flow of a use case?
Answer: Alternate flow are the alternative actions that can be performed apart for the basic flow and might be considered as an optional flow whereas Exception flow is the path traversed in case of the error or an exception being thrown. E.g., on a Login page the ‘Forgot password’ is the alternate flow and system showing ‘404 error’ when correct username and password are entered is exception flow.

36. Mention Some Of The Important Points A Business Analyst Must Take Care While Preparing Business Plan?
Answer:
 While Creating Business Document, Make sure you start from small problems. Don’t jump to big problems right way. Keep the Business sponsors and IT folks in the loop. Make sure your document clearly states Exceptions, Assumptions, and Limitations. Sometimes you need to keep in mind the legal issues. The business document should be well written for usability and future projects.

37. How Is Requirement Analysis Done By Business Analyst?
Answer:
Requirement session is usually done through the JAD session. Business Folks and Major sponsors are always there along with some technical folks. The business analyst then goes through each requirement and asks for the feedback. If Business Sponsors and Technical Folks think that all the requirements are according to the business and won’t be a barrier to the existing system. They get the official signoff on the Business Requirement document. IT manager and Business manager both do the sign off on that business requirement document.

38. What Would You Do If The Client Says That You And The Other Analysts Cannot Directly Talk To The Users?
Answer:
If this happens then explain the purpose of your talk (e.g. capture requirements) and why it’s important to talk to users directly (e.g. the quality of requirements will be better if they come directly from the user’s mouth). Explain to them that it will be a high risk to the project if the analyst can’t talk to the users directly. The client can give access to indirect (surrogate) users but explain that the quality of requirements will be not good. Hopefully, your client will agree by now otherwise flag it as a higher risk in Business Requirement Document and highlight during your meeting with your PM and Project Sponsors. Now, it’s your PM or project sponsors’ duty to provide you access to those direct users. If they can’t then you are safe anyways. 

39. When would you use Pugh Matrix?
Answer: It is a decision-making method that helps in the evaluation of advantages and disadvantages against a reference system.

40. Explain the steps that turn an idea into a product?
Answer: The steps include Market Analysis, Competitor Analysis, SWOT Analysis, Personas, Strategic Vision and Feature Set, Prioritize Features, Use Cases, SDLC, Storyboards, Test Cases, Monitoring, Scalability. The role of personas and feature prioritization is extremely crucial.

41. What is a BCG Matrix?
Answer:
To evaluate and analyze the business units and product offerings of corporations, the Boston Consulting Group developed the BCG Matrix in 1986. Companies use this simple 2 x 2 matrix as an analytical tool in portfolio analysis, strategic management, product management, and brand marketing.

BCG Matrix model:
Question Marks: These are the business having a low market share in a fast-growing market. As market growth is strong, there is a potential for Question Marks to grow. They require large amounts of capital to gain market share.

Stars: These businesses enjoy a large market share in a fast-growing market. Stars boast a prominent market position for the time. They require an investment of resources to maintain or increase its market share if the market continues to grow.

Dogs: These businesses have a low market share in a slow-growing and mature market. They are small projects with a small amount of capital allocated to support them. They barely make enough to sustain themselves and are the weakest of situations.

Cash Cows: These businesses enjoy a relatively high market share with low market growth. It represents the already matured market and the business is well established and positioned in the market. These businesses generate revenue which is imore thanwhat is required for sustenance.

42. What are the roles and responsibilities of a business analyst?
Answer: The primary role of a business analyst is to organize requirements and documents in a clear format and make sure that the coordination is proper between the client and the development team.

43. What Can You Do for Our Company that Other Candidates Can’t?
Answer: This question gives candidates a chance to show their character.

Watch out for the egotistical job seeker, and look to hire a business analysis candidate who expresses a mature analysis of their role in a team. They should be able to mention specific and unique skills that contribute to their success in the analyst position but portray a strong affinity towards teamwork. It also takes some communication skills to find that balance.

44. What sets you apart from other business analysts that we’re interviewing for this position?
Answer: This is your time to shine! Don’t hold back. Tell the interviewer about any skills or experiences that make you special.

Try something along these lines:

“As a business analyst, I would be able to contribute to your company immediately with my deep understanding of how to deliver business insights from raw data. I have experience working with SQL, data models, and Agile product development. I am also very comfortable working with clients to assess and analyze their business needs.”

When choosing what skills and experience to highlight, make sure to focus on ones that were outlined in the job advertisement.

By preparing your answers to these 10 business analyst questions in advance, you’ll be able to answer with confidence and impress your interviewer. It may sound silly, but don’t forget to practice! Giving the questions a run-through with a family member or friend, or even in front of the mirror, will make a big difference during your real interview.

45. What do you think about our business/product/ website?
Answer:

  • As a hiring manager, I only wanted to work with people that were passionate about the business and the mission. I also only wanted to work with people that went the extra mile and showed that they were hungry. This question’s goal is to test if the candidate spent any time researching the company he or she is applying to. Most interviewees I interviewed hadn’t even visited my company’s website which was always shocking to me.
  • If the candidate has little or nothing to say to this question then it may indicate that the candidate is just treating this interview as just another interview.
  • How to answer this question: Firstly you should do as much homework as you can on the company you are interviewing for. You need to understand that you are competing against the market so you want to stand out. Visit the website, sign up for the service, even contact support. Go on LinkedIn and stroll through the positions in the company. Try and get a sense of the makeup of the company. Look at the list of open positions to understand where the company is looking to scale.
  • You want to give your opinion and be brutally honest. If you think the website needs work then say so. You aren’t being hired for your looks. Share your opinions but make sure you have solid reasoning behind them so you can push back when you get challenged.
  • Don’t overdo it but the worst thing you can do is give a one-sentence answer to this question.

46. What motivated you to pursue a career as a business analyst?
Answer: This is a common business analyst interview question that interviewers use to get an understanding of your interests and career goals. This is a great opportunity for you to speak to your academic pursuits and any related jobs that you’ve held.

“One of the main reasons I want to be a business analyst is because I like to be able to see a direct relationship between my efforts and the company’s success. In my summer work term, I was able to improve the company’s operational efficiencies resulting in a cost savings of 2%.”

47. Do you have any questions for me?
Answer:

  • A good hiring manager will leave some time towards the end of the interview for the candidate to ask questions.
  • How to answer this question: If the interviewer has done a good job and shared with you a lot of info on the company, role, team, and responsibilities, and you’ve paid attention, then you should have one or two questions to ask the interviewer.
  • Don’t feel that you have to ask a question if this question comes up but if it does and you do have questions then use the opportunity. Depending on the interview process you may receive an offer the very next day and you’ll want to think through the opportunity. Without fully understanding the role and responsibilities you may be stuck and struggle to make a decision. If you find yourself in this position then try and get someone on the phone so you can ask your questions.

48. Do you think the role of a Business Analyst is a need for a project?
Answer:

  • Yes, because the role of a Business analyst is extremely beneficial from the kick-off to the implementation of a project. Here are the top 5 reasons:
  • During the project kick-off session, there are high possibilities that some technical queries come up from stakeholders and clients. As we don’t involve the technical project team during this phase and immediate answering is essential, a business analyst may play a pivotal role to answer those queries.
  • The next phase after the kick-off session essentially involves some gap analysis, business process analysis, documentation, SOW review, project scheduling and of course preparing requirement specification documents.
  • During the development and testing phase, a business analyst can play a significant role to resolve any requirement related queries from the project teams. Besides that, he can validate whether the requirements are correctly implemented and tested considering different functional and non-functional scenarios.
  • In a waterfall model, new requirements or modifications of requirements can be asked from stakeholders considering changing business needs. In this case business analyst is the person who can handle this change request with proper validation and analysis.

49. Difference between extreme programming and scrum?
Answer:
Scrum and extreme programming both follow iterations which are known as sprints. However, the sprints in a Scrum process last up to two weeks to one month long whereas in extreme programming (XP) team the iteration lasts for one or two weeks. Extreme programming is more flexible than Scrum as Scrum does not allow any change in during iterations.

Though we have categorized the above business analyst interview questions based on the experience levels, however, it could be mixed and match for any career level depending on the organization and their requirements. 

50. What is the universe in Business Analytics?
Answer:
The universe is a kind of semantic layer in between database and user interface or more correctly it is one of the interfacing layers in between the client (business user) and data warehouse. It defines an entire relationship between various tables in a data warehouse.

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