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With evolving economic and technological needs, career moves are practically universal in today’s job market.

Some of these career moves are actually leaps, such as an accountant transitioning to become a nurse, but others are much closer jumps, such a technical writer or documentation specialist moving into the often similar business analyst’s role.

Indeed, in smaller organizations (or larger organizations eyeing their bottom line) one person may handle both the business analysis and technical writing roles since the required skills often overlap so smoothly.

Additionally, in many companies, a business analyst position is in a higher salary range than that of a technical writer, making the transition financially appealing.

If you are a technical writer wondering what you might have in common with a business analyst, consider these commonly shared skills and character traits: Despite these similarities, becoming a business analyst may not be the right choice for every technical writer.

The role of a business analyst requires effective oral presentation skills and no small amount of diplomacy.

If the following are a natural part of your work persona, you will want to do some careful consideration before applying for a business analyst’s position: 1.

You enjoy working alone most of the time, spending most of your day reading, writing, and editing.

Throughout a project, business analysts continually interact with stakeholders, project managers, developers, and even training and customer care. You do not enjoy oral presentations, or explaining concepts to larger groups.Requirements are normally presented to all stakeholders in meetings, and the analyst must be prepared to explain and defend them. You do not want to host multiple meetings to facilitate a project from scope to conclusion.Depending on the company, meetings to define scope, business reviews, usability reviews, and technical reviews are all part and parcel of an analyst’s work. The thought of working to resolve conflicts between stakeholders sounds disagreeable you.Almost no business analyst enjoys resolving conflicts when stakeholders offer contradictory wish lists for inclusion in a requirements document, but such conflicts are often a regular part of the requirements cycle, so one must at least be amenable to addressing them.If you’re still wondering whether a business analysis position may be a good fit for you, the answers to these three questions may reveal the answer: (1) Would I enjoy business analysis work?If you enjoy technical writing, the chances are pretty good that you have the temperament to enjoy business analysis.But one easy way to find out is to volunteer for a small business analysis project within your project management division.(Most analysis groups are overloaded and would be glad for the help.) Go through the entire process of discovery, writing your requirements documentation, soliciting feedback, and getting final approval.Not only will this reveal whether you have an affinity for business analysis, but if you decide to pursue it as a career, it will give you some experience for your resume.Of course, before you can “try on” the role of the business analyst, you may need a bit of training.(2) Where will I find the proper training and resources to make such a career transition? (I know business analysts with degrees ranging from accounting to English literature.) And although it will help, you don’t need a college course to get started.

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