Jan 15, 2019

How to Prepare for a Business Analyst Interview

Being unprepared is one of the worst faux pas you can make in a job interview. If you're up for a great business analyst job, these practice questions can help you put your best foot forward and show your prospective new bosses just how much they should hire you.

Tell me about a time you had a conflict with a coworker or client.

Behavioral questions like this give the interviewer insight into two key elements of who you are: how you behave in a tense situation and how much expertise you have in your job. That means you'll want to have a story ready to go. Any examples you can give that are relevant and recent will be great. It can even be a minor disagreement that was resolved quickly and amicably. If you aren't the kind of person who really gets worked up around work conflicts, that's worth showcasing. The stories you tell in response to these behavior-focused business analyst interview questions don't have to be dramatic examples. They should just be true and relevant to the question. Ideally, the example should be recent and focus on something that's relevant to the job you're applying for.

Do you have any experience with user testing or acceptability testing?

If this job is a step up from where you've been or you simply weren't expected to do any testing in your old job, you may not have a direct answer for this question. That means your priority in answering will be to be honest, but not just say "no" and leave it at that. You'll know if there's a possibility that this question might come up if these types of testings are listed in the job posting. If they aren't, you can say you don't have experience and turn the question around, asking if it's a big part of the job. That might give you some context to show your knowledge or familiarity with the topic on some level. If you can't do that, just be honest about your lack of expertise but indicate that you'd be happy to learn on the job.

What frameworks and other tools do you use on a regular basis?

Again, it's important to be straightforward with questions like this. Don't misrepresent your actual experience. If there's a specific tool or framework that you know they want (like Rational Tool Suite) and you don't have much experience with it, you can simply say that you're familiar with it.

What modeling technique would you use for...?

Your interview may include some questions that ask you to demonstrate your knowledge and problem-solving abilities on the fly, like recommending a specific modeling technique for a given dataset. Remember that these answers are designed to do a few things, including showing how you think on your feet. That means you can and perhaps should ask clarifying questions to make sure you understand the scenario before giving your answer.