Certifiably a business analyst? Step 1: IIBA CBAP application submitted!

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Alas, my CBAP app is finally submitted! Last week I read Laura Brandenburg’s post on her CBAP process and I laughed because it sounded a bit like my story: I have put it off getting my CBAP as long as I could, I’m dreading taking the test, and I’m having a baby in 4 months…so I’m trying to cram it in before that!

I’m not going to detail my entire CBAP process about application and prep tips at this point because I think there are many other posts out there on that subject. Instead I will share the things I found most interesting only.

  1. The application – what a pain! I can’t deny it, it’s one of the most unenjoyable things I’ve done as a business analyst. In total it took me 3 weeks duration to complete it, though “only” about 22 hours of actual work to complete it, with all but an hour or two focused on the work experience section. My 1 tip to you if you are not applying yet – start keeping good notes about what BA work you have been doing over the years. Luckily I have been at ArgonDigital for almost 9 years, so I have detailed timesheet records of projects and the type of work I did for all of those years. And in my case, I was fortunate, I didn’t even go to past jobs because I had plenty of experience in this one to meet the minimum hours required
  2. Also, I won’t deny it, I am extremely nervous about studying for and taking the exam. I actually feel like I know the field of business analysis pretty well at this point. And, being part of the core team for version 3 of the BABOK, I feel like I know version 2 of the BABOK really well also. Yet, I have taken practice tests, and based on that, I believe this will be more of an exercise in how well I can take a test than how well I know the material. This is definitely frustrating. I am just outright an awful test taker and always have been. But more importantly, at least the practice tests are tricky, to say the least.
  3. I am going through this process and actually don’t yet know what value it will bring to me or ArgonDigital. I hope it will be worth it, and I expect in the years to come we’ll have more ArgonDigital folks get theirs, as organizations  we work with start to see value in it. That said, it seems like a win-win time for me to do it now because I’ll hopefully have it behind me before my life changes drastically AND it’s actually really helped me to become even more intimately familiar with the BABOK as I work with the team on version 3.

So, with that said, at this point, my application is submitted and I just sit back and relax while I wait for news about whether it was accepted. And then, I begin the final prep leading up to the test itself, hopefully before October when I’m sure I’ll be exhausted!!

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