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Business Analyst Certification

What is the Most Recognized Business Analyst Certification?

Businesses often have to analyze their processes, systems, markets, products, customers, strategies, and even structures from time to time to make radical decisions that will spur growth and give them a competitive advantage. Analysis in business fundamentally entails identifying business needs and areas of improvement and determining solutions using data. Yet, this process is not as simple as it sounds. This is where business analysts come in. 

The business analysis profession is vital for strategic planning and change implementation in the organization. Business analysts are agents of change whose roles cut across all levels in the organizational structure right from enterprise, organizational, operational, down to project level. Analysts perform research, plan and manage requirements, perform elicitation, analysis, documentation, communicate requirements to stakeholders, recommend appropriate solutions for the prioritized requirements, and thereafter support the implementation of solutions.  

The technological advancements that we have witnessed in recent years have evolved this role to not only involve crunching numbers but also require technical know-how. Seasoned business analysts have built vast experience over the years as they upgrade their skills. Pursuing a business analyst certification course is a good way to upgrade one’s skills. 

Most recognized Business Analyst certifications

It is important to know which course is best for you at your level and one that will give you the skills required for the position and industry you are aspiring for. Most importantly, certifications are not equal. The globally recognized business analysis certification bodies that set standards and best practices in the business analysis field include 

  • IIBA – International Institute of Business Analysis 
  • PMI – Project Management Institute 
  • IQBBA – International Qualification Board of Business Analysis 
  • IREB – International Requirements Engineering Board
  • BCS – British Computer Society 

Below we highlight five most recognized business analyst certification courses you may be interested in. 

Level  Certification  Requirements 
Beginner  ECBA – IIBA  – 21 professional development hours in the past four years 

– Agree with ECBA code of conduct 

Foundation in Business Analysis – BCS  -No entry requirements 
Intermediate  CCBA – IIBA  -ECBA Certification 

-3750 business analysis work experience in the past 7 years 

-21 professional development hours in the past four years 

-Two professional references

-Agree to CCBA code of conduct 

PMI-PBA  -Three years business analysis experience + four-year degree or five years business analysis experience + high school diploma 

-60 professional development units 

-35 contact hours of business analysis education 

Advanced  CBAP – IIBA  -7500 business analysis work experience in the past 10 years 

-60 professional development units 

-35 contact hours of business analysis education 

– Two professional references 


Business analysis certifications for beginners 

  • Entry Certificate in Business Analysis (ECBA) – IIBA 

This certification exam, procured by the International Institute of Business Analysis, is the foundation level certification offered to analysts with little or no experience or to those desiring to launch a career in the business analysis field. It is the first of a series of three levels of business analysis certifications. This certification generally covers the fundamental concepts and processes of business analysis. 

Requirements for the exam 

  • 21 hours of relevant professional development accumulated in the past four years 
  • Agree with the ECBA code of conduct for business analysts 
  • Foundation in Business Analysis – BCS

This business analyst foundation certification by the British Computer Society is designed for BAs, managers, project managers, and team members who wish to familiarize themselves with the business analysis processes and best practices. Topics covered include the roles and core competencies of a business analyst, how to document, manage, and validate requirements as well as to identify and support the implementation of business solutions to drive change and improve business processes. 

After passing the certification exam, candidates may consider advancing to the International Diploma in Business Analysis.  

Requirements for the exam

  • There are no entry requirements for the Foundation in Business Analysis exam

Business analysis certifications for Intermediate professionals  

  • Certificate of Capability in Business Analysis (CCBA) – IIBA 

The CCBA business analyst certification by IIBA is a recognized mid-level certification for professionals with two to three years of experience. This may include product managers, trainers, Non-BA consultants, project managers, change managers, QA professionals, and others. It is the second level of the three business analyst certifications offered by IIBA.  

The CCBA certification exams cover the fundamentals, core concepts, competencies, and techniques of business analysis as well as the six business analysis knowledge areas outlined in the BABOK Guide. The examination questions are scenario-based multiple-choice questions. 

Requirements for the CCBA Certification 

  • ECBA certification 
  • 3,750 hours of relevant business analysis work experience within the past seven years, of which:
  • 900 hours should have been accumulated in each of two of the six BABOK Guide Knowledge Areas or, 
  • 500 hours accumulated in each of four of the six BABOK Guide Knowledge Areas 
  •  21 relevant professional development training hours completed within the last four years 
  • Agree to the CCBA code of conduct and terms and conditions 
  • Provide two professional references 
  • PMI Professional in Business Analysis Certification 

The Business Analysis Certification by Project Management Institute is best for professionals who are involved with defining requirements for stakeholders. This may include product developers, project managers, program managers, and others who are involved in business analysis. 

Requirements for maintaining the PMI-PBA 

  • 35 contact hours of education in business analysis
  • 60 professional development units (PDUs) in business analysis after every three years
  • Three to five years of business analysis experience with a four-year degree qualification or five years of business analysis experience with a high school diploma or associate degree  

Business analysis certifications for senior professionals 

  • Simplilearn Business Analyst Master’s Certification 

Simplilearn’s Business Analyst Masters Certification is good for all levels of business analysts from beginner, intermediate to advanced. This online certification program is a rigorous curriculum offering more than just business analysis competency.  

It is good for fresh graduates who wish to venture into the business analysis field, IT professionals, business and IT administrators, project managers, product managers, sales and marketing professionals, and many more. 

This comprehensive business analyst program covers the fundamentals of business analysis including planning and monitoring; as well as requirements elicitation, management, and communication. 

  • With the endorsement of IIBA, professionals will earn 35 Continuing development units, 25 PMI professional development units towards CBAP certification, OR 22 PMI professional development units towards CCBA certification. This prepares professionals for the IIBA business analyst certifications. 
  • In collaboration with IBM, professionals will earn an IBM content certificate 
  • In collaboration with EY experts, professionals will have access to a comprehensive business analysis masterclass with Havard business case studies and a capstone project covering three domains.  

Upon completing this program, professionals can opt to earn the following certifications 

  • CBAP 
  • CCBA 
  • Agile ScrumMaster 
  • Digital Transformation for leaders 
  • Python for Data Science 
  • R programming for Data science 

Candidates also get to gain skills like Excel, Tableau, and SQL. 

Requirements for Simplilearn’s Business Analyst Master’s Certification 

  • There are no requirements for the Business Analyst Master’s Certification by Simplilearn. However, some experience is recommended 
  • Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) – IIBA 

The certified business analysis professional credential is the third and most advanced level of IIBA’s business analyst certifications. This certification is designed for professionals with vast business analysis experience. 

Requirements for the CBAP Certification Exam 

  • At least 7500 hours of relevant work experience accumulated within the past 10 years
  • 900 hours of the earned professional work experience should have been accumulated in each four of the six BABOK GuideKnowledge Areas 
  • 35 hours of professional development within the past four years 
  • Two professional references 
  • 60 hours of continuing development units every three years after passing the exam

In Summary

With their data skills and business acumen, business analysts play to make the most of the data available to the business and drive results. Possessing recognized business analyst certifications demonstrates that an analyst is aligned with international business analysis standards and is competent enough to recommend solutions that the business needs. Finally and most importantly, certifications provide a stepping stone for BA professionals to advance their careers.  


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