Tag Archive Business Analyst interview questions

Entry level business analyst interview questions

Entry level business analyst interview questions

Are you going for a business analyst job interview? What are the typical entry level business analyst interview questions? In this post, we are presenting some important questions.

These questions are taken from my book Business Analyst interview questions and answers, available on Amazon.

The questions along with the answers follow:

Why should we consider you for this profile? What do you bring to the table?

This question can be unnerving for you, if you are not prepared for it. This question requires some preparation.

Firstly, you should know about the key responsibilities areas and skills expected for this profile. This can be found in the job description (JD).

Secondly, map your existing skills and/or experience to the required skills and responsibility areas. Let’s take an example to understand the approach to answer this question.

Key Skill: UML Modelling

 UML Modelling is used to model requirements. Use cases, Activity diagrams and scenario development are specific skills.

If you have used these in any of your projects, brief the interviewer about the project and the models, you have used. It’s possible that you may have used it in more than one project. Be ready for creating one during the interview. So, practice it well.

If you have not used in your project but are familiar with the skill, you can say so. Prepare well with the concepts and examples if possible from your project.

What’s the difference between needs and requirements?

Requirements are the useful representation of the needs. Needs are high level description of the customer needs. Requirements are the expanded and detailed out description of the customer needs.

Let’s take an example of a need: 

Only authenticated users can enter the system to access the member only features.

Let’s detail out customer need as requirements:

Create a login screen which will allow the members to enter loginID and password and click on submit button to access the member only area. In case of a wrong loginID and/or password, the system throws an error.

Have you participated in requirements elicitation meetings? What are the major challenges you faced?

Yes, I have participated in the requirements elicitation phase in my last project. This project was for ‘National Bank’ (Change it as per your customer name). We were doing this project for the retail banking group. Though there were several challenges, I would like to point top two:

>> Even though we had scheduled the requirements elicitation meetings, well in advance and had also communicated to the bank, we found that the stakeholders were not available at the scheduled time and we had to wait for hours sometimes. This was going to have an impact on the overall schedule, so we involved the senior management and urged them for better participation.

>> We found this customer to be tech savvy in general and that was a good thing. But some of the stakeholders were going overboard in explaining their requirements. They were also giving their wish list as well. We tried telling them that this was probably out of scope, but they were not ready to listen. So, we decided to handle these out of scope later, as we didn’t want to interrupt the requirements gathering process.

>> I have also come across different versions or contradictory requirements coming in from different stakeholders.

As a business Analyst, which all documents have you prepared?

I have prepared quite a number of documents, some of them are:

>> System Requirements Specifications document

>> Use case Specifications document

>> Requirements Traceability Matrix

>> Change Request Document

>> RACI Matrix

>> Gap Analysis Document

Please use only those, which you are familiar with as you will get follow up questions.

What is Gap Analysis?

 Gap Analysis is a term used in product implementation lifecycle, generally.

In product implementation, we conduct “AS IS” process study to understand the existing business processes in detail.

Next step is to study the “TO BE” process. The “TO BE” processes represent the desired processes. This is the primary reason why this project is underway.

Once the “TO BE” processes are studied, the product is configured to incorporate the “TO BE” processes in the product, whatever is configurable. Remaining processes are either developed as product customization or custom build process.

Finally, the configured product is demonstrated to the customer. During this session, all the gaps in the system are identified e.g. custom reports, yet to be implemented business processes, search etc.

What are non-functional requirements? Did you capture them in SRS? Why are they important?

Non-functional requirements represent the characteristics of the application under development (AUD) rather than the behaviour of the system.

These requirements are related to performance, user interfaces, security, auditing etc. We do capture them in the SRS document along with functional requirements, but in a different section.

They are important because they allow us to identify the need for skills/resources outside the project team.

What are the key elements of an SRS?

Key elements of an SRS are shown below:

  • Scope of Work
  • Assumptions, Constraints and Dependencies
  • Functional Requirements
  • Data Model
  • Non-Functional Requirements
  • Acceptance Criteria

You mentioned Assumptions & constraints? Why are they important and what’s the difference?

Assumptions, Constraints and dependencies are important aspects of any software project as they represent the context and constraints within which, the project has to be executed.

The schedule is created considering the assumptions and constraints and if any of the assumptions becomes invalid, it might have an adverse impact on the project. So, identifying them in the Requirements specifications document becomes important.

Difference between Assumptions & constraints

>> Assumptions are scenarios and situations that are considered to be as facts for the project under development. E.g. The customer will provide access to a test PayPal system for testing payment process.

>> Constraints are restrictions that are agreed upon and recognized by all the stakeholders. E.g. A software will not be compatible with all the versions of all the browsers.

How did you make sure that requirements were good to go for next stage?

This is generally a two-pronged approach.

Firstly, we conduct reviews on the requirements. In one of the projects, the review was conducted by another business analyst, who had worked on similar project in the past.

He reviewed the documents and pointed out gaps about logical errors, missing requirements, subjectivity etc.

Secondly, the requirements were validated by the customer. We created a prototype to demonstrate the system to the customer and discussed each and every screen diligently.

What is requirements prioritization and why it’s important?

As per IIBA BABOK Guide:

Prioritization provides a framework for business analysts to facilitate stakeholder
decisions and to understand the relative importance of business analysis
information.

Requirements prioritization is the process or stage, where we allocate requirements to different phases or iterations, based on business urgency, schedule, cost etc.

Creating a prioritized requirements list helps in handling requirements in order of their importance to the customer.

There are multiple techniques, which are used for requirements prioritization like:

>> MoSCoW Technique

>> 100-dollar method

>> Requirements Ranking Method

>> Five Whys

>> Kano Analysis & More

Further Reading

Another post in this blog provides some scenario based questions for business analysts and elements of an SRS interview question.

You can also buy the book, written by me from Amazon:

Business Analyst Interview questions

 

About Techcanvass

Techcanvass offers IT certification courses for professionals. We are an IIBA endorsed education provider (EEP), iSQI ATP (for Certified Agile Business Analyst Training) as well as Agile Testing alliance partner for CP-SAT certification training in Selenium.

We have a Business analyst training course with domain training in-built into it. This training program offers you the opportunity to get certified with ECBA certification as well as have banking domain understanding.

Business Analyst Training - ECBA Certification

Business Analyst Course

Business Analyst Training with Banking

Business Analyst Training with Banking

Agile Business Analyst Training

Agile Business Analyst Training

Business Analyst Training with Trade Finance

Business Analyst Training with Trade Finance

 

 

 

ECBA Exam Simulator

ECBA Exam Simulator

BA Training with Healthcare Domain

BA Training with Healthcare Domain

BA with Investment Banking Domain

BA Training with Investment Banking

Business Analyst Interview question on Requirements Gathering / Elicitation

Business Analyst Interview question on Requirements Gathering / Elicitation

I have been writing posts dealing with typical business analyst interview questions. In this post, I am going to deal with Business Analyst Interview question on Requirements Gathering / Elicitation techniques.

Business Analysts’ interview is different from that of project managers or technical programmers. They typically face scenario based or conceptual questions. You can read the previous post also on business analyst interview questions:

What are some scenario based and logical questions that are asked in a Business Analyst interview?

 

We have launched this series, where we would be presenting typical questions and answers asked during the Business Analyst interviews. This series is based on multiple sources. Some of these sources are as follows:

a) Questions asked and collected from Quora

b) Questions sent by our own students of AGILE BA, ECBA, CCBA/CBAP and BARM programs, based on their interviews.

Business Analyst Interview question in this post

You are contracted to gather requirements for a software system involving multiple divisions of an organization. Each division is going to provide requirements and there are approximately 25 divisions. How will you go about requirements gathering?

This is a scenario based question and is asked to test your understanding of elicitation techniques.

You are a business analyst and are asked to conduct requirements elicitation in this scenario. The organization is diverse with 25 divisions indicating that each of the division will have their own set of representatives or stakeholders.

During the business analysis planning phase, if you plan to meet each of the division representatives, it’s going to take a lot of time. This is not a feasible option at all.

So, in this case, you are expected to use the elicitation technique known as User Groups. A user group is headed by a moderator or a leader and members are chosen from the customer division. This user group gathers the requirements by interacting with internal users.

Each of the divisions will be represented by one group and they can work in parallel. This shortens in the requirements elicitation time frame. You and/or team of business analysts, then, co-ordinate with these user groups to consolidate the overall organization wide requirements into a specifications document.

I used this approach in one of my projects, which was executed for one of the largest private sector banks in India.

Pitfalls of the user group approach

A major challenge with this approach is to find right members of the user group. The members of the user group should have basic understanding of the requirements formats. It’s potentially a risk and as a business analyst, you must provide the training to the user group members and leaders to ensure the desired result.

I will continue to write a few more business analyst interview questions, which are scenario based and is usually asked to measure your understanding of business analysis practices.

About Techcanvass

Techcanvass offers IT certification courses for professionals. We are an IIBA endorsed education provider (EEP), iSQI ATP (for Certified Agile Business Analyst Training) as well as Agile Testing alliance partner for CP-SAT certification training in Selenium.

We have a Business analyst training course with domain training in-built into it. This training program offers you the opportunity to get certified with ECBA certification as well as have banking domain understanding.

Business Analyst Course | ECBA Certification training

Business Analyst Course | ECBA Certification training

Business Analyst Training with Banking Domain

Business Analyst Training with Banking

Business Analyst Short Courses

Business Analyst Training Self-learning Course

What are some scenario based and logical questions that are asked in a Business Analyst interview?

What are some scenario based and logical questions that are asked in a Business Analyst interview?

Business Analysts’ interview is different from that of project managers or technical programmers. They typically face scenario based or conceptual questions.

We have launched this series, where we would be presenting typical questions and answers asked during the Business Analyst interviews. This series is based on multiple sources. Some of these sources are as follows:

a) Questions asked and collected from Quora

b) Questions sent by our own students of AGILE BA, ECBA, CCBA/CBAP and BARM programs, based on their interviews.

In this post, we are going to list down some scenario based and logical questions and over the next few posts, will provide the answers to those questions.

  • Interview question on Process Modelling: Are you familiar with Process Modeling? If your customer is not familiar with either DFD or UML diagrams, will you still use process modeling? What would be your approach?
  • Interview question on Elicitation Techniques: You are contracted to gather requirements for a software system involving multiple divisions of an organization. Each division is going to provide requirements and there are approximately 25 divisions. How will you go about requirements gathering?
  • Interview question on SRS Document: Your organization does not have a standard SRS or FSD template? You need to put together a format for the requirements specifications document? What constitutes an SRS DOCUMENT (Which all sections are there?)
  • Interview question on Use cases and User Stories: Are you familiar with use cases and user stories? How are they different or they are the same?
  • Interview question on Stakeholder Analysis: Have you been involved with stakeholder Analysis? What does it involve?
  • Interview question on BRD: What is BRD? Have you prepared a BRD? Is it different from SRS? Explain the similarities or differences?

In this post, let’s discuss the first question:

Are you familiar with Process Modeling? If your customer is not familiar with either DFD or UML diagrams, will you still use process modeling? What would be your approach?

Process modeling is the technique of visually representing the system processes. A top level diagram shows high level processes and it is further detailed out in next few levels. Typically 3 levels of detailing is good enough for every project. Process modeling helps in analyzing the processes better and also helps in optimizing it, if needed.

Process Diagram

Data Flow diagrams (DFD) and UML diagrams are more powerful modeling techniques but requires learning curve to understand it. In case, the customer or technical team is not familiar with these two techniques, we can use flow charts which is probably one of the simplest techniques. It’s simple to understand.

Purpose of this question is to test to your ability to react to a situation and find a simple solution to a problem rather than sticking to a standard process & technique.

I will provide answers to other questions in the subsequent posts.

Next:  Business Analyst Interview Question #2

Business Analyst Interview question on Requirements Gathering / Elicitation

 

About Techcanvass

Techcanvass offers IT certification courses for professionals. We are an IIBA endorsed education provider (EEP), iSQI ATP (for Certified Agile Business Analyst Training) as well as Agile Testing alliance partner for CP-SAT certification training in Selenium.

We have a Business analyst training course with domain training in-built into it. This training program offers you the opportunity to get certified with ECBA certification as well as have banking domain understanding.

Business Analyst Training - ECBA Certification

Business Analyst Course

Business Analyst Training with Banking

Business Analyst Training with Banking

Agile Business Analyst Training

Agile Business Analyst Training

Business Analyst Training with Trade Finance

Business Analyst Training with Trade Finance

 

What is your experience with analyzing and documenting the business processes?

Objective of this question is to gauge your experience and ability on process modeling. Process modeling is one of the most important skills for a business analyst.

So one can answer this question as follows (However it will greatly depend on the technique you used in your projects):

I have used process modeling in couple of my projects, I have been involved with as a business analyst. Even though I know UML and DFD modeling techniques, we used simple flow charts to model the processes as our customer wanted it that way. (You can, of course, choose to replace this answer with the techniques you are most comfortable with)

So, in the first project, which was a Loan application and approval system, we started by creating the top level context diagram (a DFD terminology) to showcase the modules of the system and the interactions amongst them. Next to that, we decomposed the modules to identify the key processes and modeled them using the flow charts. In this case, some of the steps at this level, needed further decomposition and hence we went to the next level of decomposition and at that level, we found it to be good enough to proceed to data modeling.

In case, the interviewer would like to dig deeper he/she may ask you to draw one of these diagrams and you should be in a position to do so.

If you would like to know more about Process modeling, you can watch this video to know more about it (It’s a recording of the webinar on Requirements modeling using UML)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CsgPetK9MUU

Which requirements elicitation approach will you use in the given situation?

Question

You are contracted to develop a software system involving multiple divisions of an organization. Each division is a stakeholder in the organization and there are approximately 25 divisions. How will you go about requirements gathering?

Question Objective: This is a scenario based question and is asked to check your understanding of processes and the ability to customize approach based on situations.

Answer

In this case, I would like to create a small team for each division by choosing members from the customer teams themselves. Each team will be led by process champion. Each divisional team will be responsible for interacting with divisional stakeholders to gather requirements and document it. It will require some training for the process champions and that can be done in an consolidated manner.

Once the process champions, complete their work, my team (of business analysts ) will sit with the process champions and their respective team for further discussion, interviews etc to elicit & to consolidate the requirements.