Top 10 Business Analyst Consultant Certifications
This article provides an overview of the most popular and sought-after business analyst consultant certifications to help professionals advance their careers.
Published 16 min read
Certifications are important for business analyst consultants in the job market because they demonstrate a level of expertise and proficiency in specific areas. They also serve as proof that the individual has gone through specialized training, which can make them more attractive to potential employers. Certifications can help candidates stand out from the crowd and validate their skillset, making them more competitive and increasing their chances of success in the job market. Additionally, certifications provide an opportunity for professionals to stay up-to-date with industry trends and best practices.
The purpose of the article is to provide an overview of the most valuable certifications for Business Analyst Consultants and explain how they can help advance their career.
What are Business Analyst Consultant Certifications?
Business analyst consultant certification is a professional certification which demonstrates an individual's expertise in business analysis and consulting. It is designed to help individuals develop the skills and knowledge needed to be successful in the field of business analysis and consulting. The certification program covers topics such as problem solving, data analysis, project management, process improvement, communication, negotiation, and change management. It also includes specific training on best practices for consulting engagements with clients.
Having a business analyst consultant certification can be beneficial for those looking to work in the field of business analysis and consulting. It shows potential employers that you have been trained in the necessary skills required for success in this profession. Additionally, it can give you an edge over other applicants who may not have formal training or experience in this area. Having a certification also provides an opportunity to network with other professionals in the industry and stay up-to-date on trends and developments within the field of business analysis and consulting. Furthermore, having a certification gives you credibility when working with clients as they know that you are knowledgeable about the subject matter and have been certified by a reputable organization.
Pro Tip: Before pursuing a business analyst consultant certification, make sure to research the certifying body and its accreditation. Look for courses that have been approved by industry-recognized organizations, such as the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA), to ensure you're getting a high-quality education.
Related: What does a Business Analyst Consultant do?
Top 10 Business Analyst Consultant Certifications
Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Business Analyst Consultants today.
1. Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP)
Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) is a certification offered by the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA). It is designed to recognize individuals with extensive knowledge and experience in the field of business analysis. The CBAP certification demonstrates an individual’s commitment to the profession and their ability to apply business analysis principles and practices.
It typically takes between 6-12 months to prepare for the CBAP exam, depending on your experience level. To become certified, you must meet certain eligibility requirements including having at least 7500 hours of professional business analysis experience over the past 10 years. You must also have completed 35 hours of professional development in the last 4 years, as well as two references from a current or former employer, client, or mentor who can attest to your knowledge and skills in business analysis.
Once you meet these requirements, you can register for the CBAP exam online through IIBA's website. The cost of the exam is $325 USD for members and $450 USD for non-members. The exam consists of 150 multiple-choice questions that are divided into six sections: Business Analysis Planning & Monitoring, Elicitation & Collaboration, Requirements Life Cycle Management, Strategy Analysis, Solution Evaluation and Underlying Competencies. Once you pass this exam, you will be awarded the CBAP certification which is valid for three years before needing to be renewed with additional professional development activities.
2. Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)
Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) is a certification program offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI). It is designed for project practitioners who are looking to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the principles and terminology of project management.
The CAPM certification requires a minimum of 23 hours of project management education. This can be obtained through a variety of sources such as PMI-approved courses, self-study, or online learning. After completing the required training, applicants must pass an exam that covers the five process groups and nine knowledge areas outlined in the PMBOK Guide.
In order to apply for the CAPM exam, applicants must have either a high school diploma or equivalent education, or at least 1,500 hours of professional experience working on projects. The cost of taking the CAPM exam varies depending on your location and whether you are a member of PMI or not; however, it typically ranges from $225 to $375 USD.
Once you have passed the exam, you will be awarded with your Certified Associate in Project Management credential. This credential is valid for five years after which time you will need to renew it by completing 60 professional development units (PDUs).
3. PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)
PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP) is a certification offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI) that recognizes an individual's knowledge and experience in agile practices. It is designed to demonstrate an understanding of the principles, processes, tools, and techniques used in agile project management. The PMI-ACP certification is intended for practitioners who have a minimum of 2,000 hours of general project experience and 1,500 hours of agile project experience over the past five years.
The PMI-ACP exam consists of 120 multiple choice questions and takes three hours to complete. To be eligible for the exam, applicants must have either a secondary degree (high school diploma or equivalent) plus 21 contact hours of training in agile practices; OR a four-year degree plus 1,500 hours of general project experience and 750 hours of agile project experience over the past three years.
To obtain the PMI-ACP certification, applicants must successfully pass the exam and submit proof that they meet all eligibility requirements. Once certified, individuals are required to maintain their credential by earning 30 professional development units (PDUs) every three years.
The cost for taking the PMI-ACP exam varies depending on whether you are a member or nonmember of PMI. For members it costs $435 USD while for nonmembers it costs $495 USD.
4. Six Sigma Green Belt Certification
Six Sigma Green Belt Certification is a professional credential that recognizes individuals who have achieved a level of mastery in the Six Sigma methodology. It is awarded to those who demonstrate an understanding of the principles and tools used to improve quality and reduce costs in any organization.
The certification process typically takes three to four months, depending on the individual’s background and experience. To become certified, applicants must pass a written exam administered by an accredited organization such as ASQ or IASSC. The exam covers topics such as Six Sigma concepts, project management, problem solving, data analysis, and team dynamics.
In order to prepare for the exam, applicants should take courses or training programs offered by various providers. These courses cover topics such as Six Sigma principles and tools, project management techniques, statistical analysis methods, and Lean principles. Most providers also offer study materials such as textbooks or online resources to help candidates prepare for the exam.
The cost of obtaining Six Sigma Green Belt Certification varies depending on the provider and the type of program chosen. Generally speaking, it can range from $500-$2,000 USD for self-paced programs to $3,000-$5,000 USD for instructor-led programs.
5. Certified Scrum Master (CSM)
Certified Scrum Master (CSM) is a certification program offered by the Scrum Alliance to professionals who wish to demonstrate their understanding of Scrum and its core principles. The CSM certification is designed to provide individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary to effectively lead and manage projects using Scrum, an agile software development methodology.
The CSM certification requires applicants to attend a two-day training course, which covers topics such as the fundamentals of Scrum, roles and responsibilities within a Scrum team, sprint planning and execution, product backlog management, and other related topics. Upon successful completion of the course, participants are required to take an online exam in order to receive their certification.
The cost of attending the two-day CSM training course varies depending on location but typically ranges from $1,000-$1,500 USD. The cost of the online exam is $250 USD.
In order to maintain their CSM certification status, certified professionals must complete at least 20 hours of continuing education every two years. This can be done through attending additional courses or workshops related to Scrum or participating in webinars or other activities that help keep your knowledge up-to-date.
6. ITIL Foundation Certificate in IT Service Management
The ITIL Foundation Certificate in IT Service Management is an entry-level certification that provides a comprehensive understanding of the ITIL framework and its core principles. It is designed to provide individuals with the skills and knowledge necessary to understand, implement, and manage best practices within an organization.
It typically takes around 20 hours of study to prepare for the ITIL Foundation exam. The exam itself consists of 40 multiple choice questions and requires a minimum score of 65% to pass.
To get the ITIL Foundation Certificate, you must first register for the exam through an accredited training provider or examination institute. You can then purchase study materials such as books or online courses to help you prepare for the exam. Once you have completed your studies, you will be able to take the exam at an accredited test center near you.
The cost of taking the ITIL Foundation Certificate varies depending on where you take it and which training provider or examination institute you use. Generally speaking, it costs between $200-$400 USD to take the exam.
7. Lean Six Sigma Black Belt Certification
Lean Six Sigma Black Belt Certification is a professional certification program designed to help individuals develop their knowledge and skills in the areas of Lean and Six Sigma. It is typically awarded to professionals who have completed a series of courses, workshops, and projects related to Lean Six Sigma.
The Lean Six Sigma Black Belt Certification program typically takes around 8-10 weeks to complete, depending on the provider. The program consists of several modules that cover topics such as process improvement, problem solving, data analysis, project management, and change management. Participants must also complete a project or case study in order to demonstrate their understanding of the material.
In order to get certified as a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt, individuals must first pass an exam administered by an accredited organization such as ASQ or IASSC. The exam covers topics such as statistics, process improvement tools and techniques, and project management principles. Individuals must also demonstrate mastery of the material by completing a project or case study.
The cost for obtaining Lean Six Sigma Black Belt Certification varies depending on the provider but can range from $2,000-$5,000 USD. This cost usually includes tuition fees for the course material and exams as well as any materials needed for the project or case study component of the certification program.
8. Project Management Professional (PMP)
Project Management Professional (PMP) is a certification program offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI). It is designed to recognize the knowledge, skills, and abilities of project managers who have demonstrated their expertise in leading and directing projects. PMP certification is globally recognized and demonstrates that a project manager has met the highest standards of professional excellence.
It typically takes about 6-12 months to complete the requirements for PMP certification. To get certified, you must first meet certain eligibility criteria such as having at least 4500 hours of experience leading and directing projects over the past 8 years, or 7500 hours if you have a bachelor’s degree or higher. You must also pass an exam which consists of 200 multiple-choice questions.
The cost of getting PMP certified varies depending on your PMI membership status. If you are not a member of PMI, it will cost $555 to take the exam. If you are already a member, then it will cost $405 to take the exam. In addition to this fee, there may be other costs associated with preparing for and taking the exam such as study materials or courses.
9. Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN)
Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN) is a graphical notation used to model business processes. It provides a standard way of representing business processes in a visual manner, making them easier to understand and communicate. BPMN can be used to model any type of process, from simple to complex.
BPMN does not require any special training or certification and can be learned quickly by anyone with basic knowledge of business processes. It typically takes one to two days to learn the basics of BPMN and become comfortable using it. There are several resources available online that provide tutorials on how to use BPMN, such as the official BPMN website and various books and courses.
BPMN is free and open source, so there is no cost associated with using it. However, if you want access to additional features such as automated process simulations or collaboration tools, you may need to purchase a license for these features from a vendor such as Signavio or Camunda.
10. Certified Software Quality Analyst (CSQA)
Certified Software Quality Analyst (CSQA) is a professional certification program offered by the American Software Testing Qualifications Board (ASTQB). The CSQA certification is designed to help software professionals demonstrate their knowledge and experience in software quality assurance, testing, and related disciplines. It is an internationally recognized credential that can be used to enhance career opportunities.
The CSQA certification requires passing a comprehensive exam that covers topics such as software development life cycle, software testing principles and practices, defect management, test planning and design, test automation, test execution and reporting. The exam consists of multiple-choice questions and takes approximately three hours to complete.
To become certified as a CSQA, applicants must have at least two years of relevant experience in the field of software quality assurance or testing. Applicants must also submit an application form along with proof of their experience. Once approved for the exam, applicants must take it within 12 months and pass with a minimum score of 70%.
The cost of the CSQA certification exam varies depending on where you take it but typically ranges from $200 - $400 USD.
Do You Really Need a Business Analyst Consultant Certificate?
In short, the answer to whether or not you need a business analyst consultant certificate depends on your individual needs and goals. Depending on the type of position you are looking for and the level of expertise you possess, a certificate may be beneficial.
For those who have little to no experience in the field of business analysis and consulting, obtaining a certificate can be helpful in demonstrating your knowledge and skills in the field. A certificate also serves as an indicator that you have taken the time to invest in yourself by acquiring additional training or education. It shows potential employers that you are serious about pursuing a career in this field and that you are willing to go the extra mile to gain knowledge and experience.
On the other hand, if you already have extensive experience in business analysis and consulting or if you already hold an advanced degree related to this field, then a business analyst consultant certificate may not be necessary. Employers may still consider it as a positive addition to your resume, but it is likely not essential to showing that you possess sufficient knowledge and skills for the job at hand.
Ultimately, it is up to each individual’s specific situation when deciding whether or not they should pursue a business analyst consultant certificate. If it is something that will add value to your credentials then it may be worth considering; however if your current qualifications are sufficient for what employers are seeking then there would be no need for one.
Related: Business Analyst Consultant Resume Examples
FAQs About Business Analyst Consultant Certifications
Q1. What is a Business Analyst Consultant Certification?
A1. A Business Analyst Consultant Certification is a type of certification that demonstrates an individual’s ability to analyze and interpret business data, develop solutions for complex business problems, and provide advice and guidance on how to improve operational efficiency.
Q2. How do I obtain a Business Analyst Consultant Certification?
A2. To obtain a Business Analyst Consultant Certification, you must pass the relevant exams offered by the Certified Professional in Business Analysis (CPBA) program or similar accredited certification programs such as the Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) program.
Q3. What are the benefits of having a Business Analyst Consultant Certification?
A3. Benefits of having a Business Analyst Consultant Certification include increased job opportunities and higher earning potential, improved credibility among colleagues and employers, access to exclusive resources and support networks, and enhanced professional development opportunities.
Q4. How long does it take to get a Business Analyst Consultant Certification?
A4. The time it takes to get certified depends on the exam you choose as well as your preparation level; however, most certifications can be completed within 6-12 months if you have adequate experience in the field or have taken formal training courses prior to testing.
Q5. Are there any prerequisites for becoming certified in Business Analysis?
A5: Yes, most certification programs require applicants to have at least three years of related experience or equivalent education before they can apply for certification exams such as CBAP or CPBA. Additionally, many programs also require applicants to attend specific courses related to business analysis prior to applying for certification exams.