It’s important to make a choice. You don’t ever know for sure whether it will be right or wrong till you don’t choose.
I received a call some 2 years back in September from the Executive Manager of an Insurance company for an interview. I could not have cared less at the time as I figured they’d want the same thing that the others (companies) in the market(The Caribbean market) wanted, i.e., someone with networking experience. There were only a handful of business that had an I.T. department in house. The interview went fine I guess. To be honest, I don’t remember half of it right now. I just did not expect to hear that they were looking for someone to play the role of a Business Analyst. At the time I was not aware exactly what my role demands of me. However, after talking things through with the gentleman who took my interview, I figured this shouldn’t be so tough. In my head, at the time, I was probably thinking….’ hmmmm, this shouldn’t be so difficult. After all, it’s just a lot of talking with different people and documenting what they need.’ Boy! was I in for a surprise!
Now, don’t get wrong here, I did a couple of small projects here and there but never saw the involvement of a business analyst. Of course those in the I.T. field would have some basic knowledge of this but nothing in depth unless you have applied for some certification or attended some classes specifically for this. I started doing my share of research of my new role. I was not aware of the insurance domain which made things very difficult. But thankfully there were some experts in office that helped me with that.
I was basically learning while on the job. I would read blogs, articles, whatever I could get my hands on. I would attend webinars, and even search for business analysts on social media and have conversations with them. I’ll be honest it was frantic and stressful but I can’t deny it was exciting and a learning experience. I must say that the knowledge in this field are imparted to a handful of people. Owing to social media a lot of people are realizing the need of specializing in this area resources were plenty.
The difficult part of it, in the beginning at least, was where do I start. I knew about elicitation techniques and I read about agile, scrum and various methodologies. I read about UML and use cases. I read about insurance as it was the domain. I read up on the company’s policy booklets and asked a bunch of questions from a lot of people at various levels in the organization. I received information from all sorts and it was overwhelming. But I wasn’t sure on how much is enough information and what do I do with it. And therefore I chose to base first post on where to start.
This field has been evolving rapidly and I am learning something new all the time. I would like to know some of your apprehensions or anxieties when you first began your journey. Please do share in the comments section.
Until next time……