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Business Analyst in a Software House — Everything You Need To Know

Business

Mar 7, 2022 - 5 minute read

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Weronika Morisson-Glapa Team Leader Senior Business Analyst
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Working in a software house is different from what we can experience in start-ups or typical product companies. It’s extremely advanced and dynamic. The variety of clients, domains, and project-specific requirements is bigger than in any other environment. When you’re considering taking on a new job, it’s good to learn the specifics first. What’s it like to be a Business Analyst in a software house? Read on to find out.

Meaningful Relationships

Objectivity is a company that supports its clients on many different levels — from building products and running projects to providing consultancy services. We’re frequently faced with new domains, and drilling into them requires fast learning skills. It also takes courage to meet new people from different cultures and build long-lasting relationships.

As Business Analysts (BAs), we often take the responsibility for the success of a given initiative. Personally, what I like the most in this job is the influence on the relationships we build. As the liaison between the client and our colleagues, we help to build one big team and see the cooperation improve over time. Of course, we’re not the only ones who make it happen, however, our impact on the collaboration is significant.

Establishing a good relationship helps the team achieve their goals and results in the success of the product. BAs are treated as valuable business partners and people have a lot of trust in our expertise. Therefore, we might feel a bit stressed when the project is being finalised. Following Scrum guidelines, we regularly check with our stakeholders if the features delivered are what they were asking for. Sometimes we wish we had more direct feedback from end users, but it’s not always achievable, and we need to trust our partners do their job well. When we get the opportunity, we jump into the Product Owner’s shoes and see the products in action. It gives us this extra motivation when we see that the results of our work are actually used by people and make a difference in their daily work.

Expertise and Trust

We participate in projects of various domains and sizes, which allows us to experience many different ways of working. The best practices we follow help us excel in business processes, however, we also remain flexible. Very often our clients have specific ways of working which we need to understand and comply with. This means that without changing jobs, we get to experience a whole new world. There are times when a BA gets the opportunity to settle in a longer project and perfect their skills. Such a long-term assignment makes us proud because it means we’re being perceived as trustworthy partners in business.

Working in a mature software house gives you the chance to cooperate with other experienced and skilled people. You can benefit from your colleagues' knowledge not only when it comes to business analysis skills. Learning on the job is one of the best methods to expand your competency portfolio. In my job, I’ve learned from people with many different roles but also personalities. When I’m facing difficulties, I can always count on the support and advice from my colleagues. This is something you won’t get in a start-up where you often seek advice outside of your team or company. When you join a software house, you gain comprehensive experience from dealing with varied product types, domains and challenges. At the same time, you are supported by a set of tools, processes, and in-house knowledge.

Unique Experiences

Over the last 5 years at Objectivity, I’ve learned and experienced things I wouldn’t find anywhere else:

  • Leverage different tools and best practices — there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. Years of experience allowed the company and its employees to prepare a list of tools useful in our daily job.
  • Collaboration is key. Your job isn’t the only thing that matters, it takes teamwork to deliver value. You must learn how to cooperate with different personalities and adapt when the team is changing. Teammates need to support each other.
  • People can have different objectives and expectations. It requires a lot of openness to understand the client and the challenges they’re facing.
  • BAs may have different sets of skills. Having worked with over 40 different analysts, I discovered that there‘s no universal set of skills one should have to be a good BA. Everyone is unique and should focus on using their strong suits. We should also be aware of where help might be needed.

Fast Track to Excellence

There are, however, a few things I miss from my previous job at a start-up. Working in a small company gave me the feeling of being part of a family. Everyone knows each other well. The relationships are more personal. There’s much more direct contact with everyone: your boss, other employees, the client, and end users. Maybe it’s not the same in a software house, but if a matrix organisation model is applied, one might feel that there are multiple start-ups within one big company. At Objectivity, BAs are assigned to specific teams working for a client (this changes over time), but they also belong to one group of analysts for the entire duration of their employment.

In my previous roles, there was a bit more autonomy when it came to managing a product, and a lack of pressure connected with the cost of the project. In a start-up company, I had the feeling that we all wanted to improve, but there was no tension if it didn’t happen. We did set some goals to achieve and were proud if we succeeded. In a software house, we strive for excellence in our work and there is very little space for mistakes. However, thanks to the support we get from other roles and fellow BAs, the risk of failure is minimised.

I daresay that working in a software house speeds up the process of getting experience in different domains and working environments. It’s a bit like using Scrum to accelerate your career — you learn and adapt through iteration.

Join Us!

If you’d like to grow your skillset in interesting projects, have a look at our current job openings. Let’s meet and talk about your goals.

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Weronika Morisson-Glapa Team Leader Senior Business Analyst
See all Weronika's posts

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