Plenty of analysts keen to take formal exam

Almost 40 interested analysts turned up to a recent meeting on the subject

New Zealand’s business analysts are likely to get the right to a formal certified business analysis professional (CBAP) qualification, with local analysts showing a lot of interest in the qualification.

The International Institution of Business Analysts (IIBA) insists that at least 20 candidates be found in order to make it worthwhile conducting the exam. However, almost 40 interested analysts turned up to a recent meeting on the subject in Wellington, so the prospects look good.

However, moderator Paul Ramsay warned that only one exam is likely to be held for the initial batch of aspirants, and this will be in whichever centre puts up the most approved candidates for the examination. Analysts have until May 14 to submit their application.

Brian Levy, who passed the exam in Australia, addressed the meeting, detailing its format and procedures. He pointed out that business analysts were among the occupational classes listed as most favoured for immigration to New Zealand.

A candidate first has to demonstrate 7,500 hours of business analysis and related activity in the last ten years before being allowed to sit the exam. Tight restrictions are placed on what kinds of activities qualify. Managing a team of business analysts is not counted, for example. But close mentoring of an individual fledgling analyst does count.

There is a defined body of knowledge for business analysis, set out in a 300-page manual. Levy advises careful study of this, particularly any aspects which the candidate has not personally practised. The exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions “with a practical emphasis”, Levy says, “So you can’t pass by cramming.”

He advises potential candidates to form study groups for mutual assistance in preparing for the exam.

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