Top Business Analyst Certifications - CBAP, CCBA, CSBA and PMI-PBA

Are you an analyst looking for career growth? Are you looking for a senior position in your current Business Analyst role? Are you looking for certification programs for Business Analyst to upgrade your skill set? Then this article may be helpful for you because I’ll be explaining top Certifications available for Business Analyst professionals which could be helpful to upgrade your skill set and get eligible for a higher position in your organization.




Experience matter a lot for Business Analyst professional’s mature skill sets then why the hell I should go for the Business Analyst Certification Program? Well, to clarify your doubt, I would like to highlight some of the major benefits of Business Analysts certification Programs:

  • It adds recognition and value to your profile as a Business Analyst in the Global market
  • It opens a good career opportunity for you.
  • It increases your self-confidence
  • It makes your Business Analysis fundamental clear.
  • You stand first in your peers, hence promotion opportunity is high for you.
  • It changes the way you work which helps to gain more respect from managers and stakeholders.


As you already know the benefit of doing Business Analyst Certification, let’s go ahead and see the certification options available for Business Analysts. Below I’ve listed four famous and widely recognized certifications which can upgrade your skill set and make you an ideal candidate for any Senior Business Analyst position.
There are to top two widely accepted and respected certifications offered by International Institute of Business Analysis.

  1. Certified Business Analysis Professional™ (CBAP®)
  2. Certification of Competency in Business AnalysisTM (CCBA®)




Most of the Business Analyst go for these two certifications as these are worldwide recognized, accepted and famous, however, there are other certifications also available which could be a good choice for a Business Analyst.

Both Business Analysts Certifications has the same fees i.e. same application fee, exam fee, and re-certification fees, however, the application fee is the same for members and Non-Members of IIBA but Members get a price break on the exam fee and re-certification fees.
Let’s discuss the Business Analysts Certification Program offered by the International Institute of Business Analysis in detail.


#1. Certified Business Analysis Professional™ (CBAP®)


The Certified Business Analysis ProfessionalTM (CBAP®) is widely recognized and opted Business Analyst certification. It is designed for professionals with extensive Business Analysis experience.
You can apply for CBAP certification if you have advanced knowledge and extensive working experience in any of the below roles:


  • Business analysis
  • Systems analysis
  • Requirements analysis or management
  • Process improvement
  • Consulting


Eligibility For CBAP:

  • Minimum 7500 hours of BA work experience aligned with A Guide to the Business Analysis Body of Knowledge® (BABOK® Guide) in the last 10 years
  • Minimum 900 hours in four of the six knowledge areas
  • Minimum 21 hours of Professional Development in the past four years
  • Two references from a career manager, client or Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP®) recipient
  • Signed Code of Conduct


Application Fees For CAB:

The application fee is $125 USD and is not refundable (i.e. regardless of whether your application is approved or declined).

The exam fee is $325 USD for IIBA members and $450 USD for non-members.


Maintaining a CBAP® Certification:

The CBAP® is maintained through earning continuing education credits which IIBA calls Continuing Development Units, or CDUs. Over a three-year cycle, CBAP® holders must earn 60 hours of CDUs. The re-certification fee is $85 for IIBA members or $120 for non-members.


Apply for the CBAP Certification


#2. Certification of Competency in Business AnalysisTM (CCBA®)

You don’t need extensive work experience in analysis role for the Certification of Competency in Business AnalysisTM (CCBA®) because it is designed for business analysis practitioners who want to be recognized for their expertise and skills by earning formal recognition. It requires only a minimum of 3750 hours of hands-on business analysis experience.

You can apply for CCBA certification if you have advanced knowledge and extensive working experience in any of the below roles (minimum 3750 hours):


  • Business analysis
  • Systems analysis
  • Requirements analysis or management
  • Process improvement
  • Consulting

Eligibility:

  • Minimum 3750 hours of business analysis work experience aligned with the BABOK® Guide in the last seven years
  • Minimum 900 hours in two of the six knowledge areas or 500 hours in four of the six knowledge areas
  • Minimum 21 hours of Professional Development in the past four years
  • Minimum high school education or equivalent
  • Two references from a career manager, client or Certified Business Analysis ProfessionalTM (CBAP®) recipient
  • Signed Code of Conduct


Application Fees:

The application fee is $125 USD and is not refundable (i.e. regardless of whether your application is approved or declined).

The exam fee is $325 USD for IIBA members and $450 USD for non-members.

Maintaining a CCBA® Certification:

In order to maintain their certifications, CCBA® holders must take 60 hours of continuing education over a three-year period. The renewal fee is $85 for IIBA members and $120 for non-members.


Refer to the CCBA Handbook for the exam booking process.

Refer the Certification FAQs for any more information.


You might have doubt on which Business Analyst Certification to go for i.e. whether to go for Certified Business Analysis Professional™ (CBAP®) or Certification of Competency in Business AnalysisTM (CCBA®)?, below the difference between CBAP and CCBA can help you to choose one:


CBAP® and CCBA® have the following differences:

  • CBAP is more difficult than and CCBA, hence has more weight

  • The CBAP® exam requires applicants to have 7500 hours of business analysis work experience within the last 10 years including 900 hours in each of four of the six knowledge areas whereas The CCBA® demands 3750 hours of business analysis work experience within the last seven years including 900 hours in each of two of the six knowledge areas.



No need to stop here, I would like to introduce two more Business Analysts Certification Programs which you can choose to enhance your skills.


#3. Certified Software Business Analyst – CSBA

Certified Software Business Analyst certification is designed for the software professionals and one can opt for better career growth as Business Analysts in Information Technology.

Eligibility:

To qualify for candidacy, each applicant must meet ONE of four prerequisites listed below:

  • 4-year degree from accredited college-level institution & 2 years of experience in the information services field
  • 3-year degree from accredited college-level institution & 3 years of experience in the information services field
  • 2-year degree from accredited college-level institution & 4 years of experience in the information services field
  • Six years of experience in the information services field

AND

Are working, or have worked at any time within the prior 18 months, in the field within covered by the certification designation.

Application Fees:

The CSBA application fee is: US $350.00

Note: The candidates Initial Exam which must be taken within one year from the date payment was processed or the application will expire.

Exam Type:

The exam itself consists of two parts:

  1. Parts 1 – Multiple choices (100 questions - 75 minutes) 
  2. Parts 2 – Short answer / essay (12 questions - 75 minute).

There is a total of 112 questions and the exam will take over 2 1/2 hours to complete which includes an optional 10-minute break after part one. The passing mark is 70% which is the average score of both parts.


Maintain your CSBA:

Recertification is required every three years before the anniversary date of the current certification. Multiple email reminders will be sent out to the default email address entered in the Portal starting 180 days out, with the final going out 30 days from the expiration date. It is the member's responsibility to ensure their email address in the Portal is correct and up-to-date so that they will receive the re-certification reminders.

Book Certified Software Business Analyst


#4. PMI Professional in Business Analysis (PMI-PBA)®

PMI Professional in Business Analysis Certification is designed and well suited for professionals who are a project or program manager but performs business analysis in their role.

Eligibility:

Secondary degree (high school diploma, associate’s degree) or

  • 7,500 hours of business analysis experience
  • 2,000 hours working on project teams
  • 35 contact hours of education in business analysis

OR
Bachelor’s degree or the global equivalent

  • 2,000 hours working on project teams
  • 4,500 hours of business analysis experience
  • 35 contact hours of education in business analysis

*Project experience can include your business analysis experience. A current PMP® or PgMP® will satisfy this requirement but is not required for the PMI-PBA.


Application Fees:

Member: US$405.00
Non-member: US$555.00


Exam Type:

The certification exam has 200 multiple-choice questions and you have four hours to complete it.


Maintain Your PMI-PBA

To maintain your PMI-PBA, you must earn 60 professional development units (PDUs) in business analysis topics every three years.




Hope you found this article useful. Do share your experience and view on best certification for business analyst.


Thank you for reading and share to help other Business Analyst.  All the best for your next certification.

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