The Difference Between Business Analysis and Systems Analysis

The work of a business analyst and system analyst differ greatly in relation to the set of skills required although there may be some overlap between the two. Some organisations repeatedly use these two terms to describe the same job despite the fact that they both have totally different positions and distinct duties/descriptions.

There are numerous differences between these positions and they become more elaborate depending on the corporation or the business. The job title is not the only characteristic that differentiates them, however as explained below:

Duties of a Business Analyst

The main skill of a business analyst is detecting opportunities that can enhance business operations while recommending technology, where necessary, to eradicate the issues that impact an organisation’s output, productivity and bottom line. In addition, business analysts are also involved in:

  • Assessing the business practices of an organization for inadequacies
  • Making recommendations for improvement or recommending solutions that can be realised using existing technology or new technology
  • Liaising between business shareholders and the management, IT and end-user teams
  • Assessing and communicating the needs raised by shareholders through the translation of business requirements into software requirements
  • Managing stakeholder requirements

Duties of a System Analyst

System analysts make use of the IT systems in an organisation to help them achieve their tactical business goals. This may include designing and developing new systems through the configuration of new software and hardware or using current systems. The duties of a system analyst may include:

  • Discussing with management and users to determine system requirements
  • Identifying the inputs and outputs that will meet the users’ needs when the system is developed
  • Using the principles of structured analysis, sampling and accounting to ensure that the solution offered is effective, cost-efficient and financially viable
  • Creating diagrams, flowcharts, and specifications to be used by programmers
  • Administering the application, coordinating tests, and observing system performance to ensure improvement.  

What other differences do you think should be on this list?

Picture Attribution: “Full Length Portrait Of A Young Businessman Standing” by stockimages/