Business Analyst vs Business Analytics: How To Distinguish?

difference between business analysis and business analytics

90% of freshly graduated Business Analyst and Business Analytics international students struggle to find a job in the field.  

Surprise, right? 

Experts realize that out of a thousand impacts, the major one is that students can’t distinguish the difference between business analyst vs business analytics. Additionally, the misconception of international students about the Australian recruitment market leads to the insufficient process of job selection and decision-making.

This blog precisely defines business analyst vs analytics, their differences. Most importantly, the ITPA expert’s diverse POV on the two concepts as well as practical recommendations for those who struggle. Stay tuned because the good part starts soon!

difference between business analysis and business analytics

What Is Business Analytic?

Business analytics are tasks focusing on utilizing data, statistical analysis, and quantitative methods to report the current performance and predict the future development of a business.

Experts, mainly in charge of code, data, and statistics, are Data Analysts (DA) and Data Scientists (DS). Their day-to-day tasks are mostly performed through collecting data and processing to analyze and make informed decisions about the next development step. 

By examining historical data and applying advanced analytical techniques, business analytics help businesses uncover valuable insights about their customers, products, processes, and market trends.

While being the ‘ace’ in a business, these experts must have exclusive logical thinking skills, coding, and mastering mathematics to grow their business exclusively. 

Here are some examples of business analytics in various fields:

1. Banking

Business analytics is used in banking to analyze customer data, detect fraud patterns, assess credit risk, and optimize pricing strategies for financial products.

2. Finance

Financial institutions leverage analytics for portfolio analysis, risk management, fraud detection, and forecasting to make informed investment decisions.

3. Human Resources

HR departments use analytics to analyze employee data, identify trends in attrition rates, optimize workforce planning, and improve employee engagement and performance.

4. Supply Chain Management:

Analytics is applied to optimize inventory management, logistics, demand forecasting, and supplier performance, improving efficiency and cost savings.

5. Healthcare

Business analytics aids in optimizing hospital operations, analyzing patient data to improve diagnosis and treatment, predicting disease outbreaks, and managing healthcare costs.

What Is Business Analyst?

A business analyst (BA) is a job title that describes a professional who works in the field of business analysis. Simply put, their job is to analyze the needs of an organization and propose better solutions to help with growth. 

business analyst vs analytics

And because these solutions normally require advanced technicality, business analysts must prepare themselves a firm domain knowledge and software development life cycle SDLC.

Most of their tasks involve communicating with stakeholders to collect and evaluate the needs to gain insights for their technical works. Hence, comparing business analytics vs business analyst, BAs aren’t usually involved in code.

These professionals must have a strong understanding of business SOP, software development, and project management processes. In addition, knowledge of basic programming or data analysis will be a huge competitive advantage.

Depending on the business model and job requirements, you would normally see the two main groups:

  • Non-IT BA: specializes in analyzing and finding solutions to optimize business operation procedures. 
  • IT BA: connects the business and development teams to build products as required. Thus, this group requires a higher base of SDLC.

Business Analyst vs Business Analytics: Similarities & Differences

When comparing business analytics vs business analyst, there are similarities and differences. 

Similarities

1. Similarity: Data Analysis

As previously mentioned, both roles focus on data analysis to gain insights into a specific business performance. 

They identify relevant data sources, gather data from various systems and databases, and ensure its quality, completeness, and accuracy. Their responsibilities aim to interpret the findings and draw conclusions that can inform decision-making and drive business improvements. 

business analytics vs business analyst

2. Similarity: Collaborative Approach

Both business analysts and business analytics professionals often collaborate with cross-functional teams, including IT, operations, finance, and marketing, to gather data, understand requirements, and implement solutions. 

To maximize the work’s efficiency, they work as intermediaries, ensuring business stakeholders and technical teams know others’ expectations and commitment while targeting the same outcomes. 

3. Similarity: Communication Skills

Every job must involve communicating and reporting, right? Well, then, there is no exception to business analytics vs business analyst. 

Due to the technical aspects, these roles exclusively require advanced communication skills as they must transfer complex understanding to simple explanations to diverse stakeholders, including non-technical audiences.

business analyst vs business analytics

Differences

1. Difference: Scope and Focus

In comparing business analytics vs analyst, business analytics has a broader scope and focuses on using data-driven insights to drive strategic decision-making and optimize overall business performance. 

On the other hand, business analysts specifically focus on understanding and transferring business needs into functional requirements. They work explicitly with stakeholders to improve business processes, identify gaps, and propose solutions that align with organizational goals.

2. Difference: Technical Skills and Expertise

Business analytics requires strong technical skills in data manipulation, statistical modeling, programming, and data visualization. Professionals in this field must be proficient in using tools like Python, R, SQL, and data visualization platforms to conduct complex analyses and generate insights.

business analyst vs business analytics salary

However, as a business analyst, you only need a basic understanding of data analysis and visualization techniques. Because most of the analysis’s tasks rely on business process modeling, goal identification, performance analysis, and project management. A business analyst requires proficiency in tools like flowcharts, diagrams, and collaboration software to facilitate their work.

3. Difference: Outcome and Deliverables

The outcome of business analytics is focused on generating insights and recommendations based on data analysis. These professionals must deliver reports, visualizations, and predictive models that provide valuable insights to support strategic decision-making.

Besides, business analysts’ outcomes must surround improving business processes and delivering solutions. They must provide documentation, process maps, and functional specifications that guide the development and implementation of solutions to address business challenges.

4. Difference: Salary

As different roles require different technical knowledge, their salary is also diverse. 

So, here is a brief report about business analyst vs business analytics salary. According to Talent.com, business analyst salaries in Australia are:

  • The average annual salary is around AUD$112,762 per year.
  • Entry-level typically starts at around AUD$ 99,500 per year.

However, due to more advanced technical requirements, professionals who perform business analytics, like Data Scientists and Data Analysts receive higher salaries:

  • The average salary for a Data Scientist is A$121,750 per year in Australia. (Glassdoor)
  • Entry-level positions start at $103,921 per year. (Talent.com)

Expert Thought

To all international students who have little or no experience in the IT market, based on my expertise, the most secure approach for all Australian newcomers is to take your first step into data science or business intelligence (BI). Why?

Cause its acceptance rate is relatively less complex than other IT industries, especially for those who take Business Analytics courses, ICT BA, or BIS. Other than that, don’t start yet.

As an IT Vietnamese-Australian expert, I recommend not immediately starting your business analysis journey when first arriving in this country. 

Unbelievable, right? Totally understand. But unfortunately, that is the best recommendation I can give to you at the moment. 

The fact is, Vietnamese students don’t have room in becoming business analyst, and the biggest barrier is somehow predictable, language. 

Needless to say, the English level of Vietnamese (and some Asian countries) is not certified by Australians. It is undeniable that business analysts must score high-level English skills, or sometimes more advanced, to catch up with all the technical language. Hence, struggling to understand English can give them a hard time working and cause them to fall behind compared to native speakers. 

Here is another case. Let’s say your English is good enough to pass the resume screening round. Yet, most likely, it would just stop there because you cannot display your technical skills. As previously mentioned, being a business analyst requires communication and documentation, making it relatively difficult to showcase these skills on your resume, even if you are competent.

Conclusion

After a long reading about the difference between business analysis and business analytics, any advice yourself? 

We all know that business analytics will not be an easy pathway, especially working in a foreign country. But knowing how to distinguish precisely between business analyst vs business analytics allows you to avoid unexpected changes, making your progress smoother. 

Once again, all the information above is based on my expertise as a Vietnamese business analyst working in a competitive Australian IT market and my observations through my professional network. Hence, take it wisely. 

It’s always up to you to do careful research and decide who you want to become and what goals you want to achieve. Remember, the best way to start progress is a firm base of knowledge. So, focus on taking your degree seriously, and good luck on your journey!

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