Cape Town Branch Special Event: Launch of PMI-PBA Certification on 20 July 2017 

 

Backed by the global standard for project management, the PMI South Africa Chapter continues to make its mark as a thought leader in the field of project leadership, by facilitating discourse and engagement on emerging trends and competencies for industry professionals across all sectors. 

Acknowledging the ever-growing need for professional Business Analysts on both an international scale and local scale, the South Africa Chapter recently initiated the first of four branch meetings introducing new PMI Professional in Business Analysis Certification.

Hosted by current Cape Town branch leader Marko Divac and his team, the guests were welcomed personally and provided with refreshments while given some time to browse through the PMI certifications literature and printed booklets on the new BA Certification.  The first presentation was by Karen Taylor-Vermaak, VP Marketing and Communications, who offered an overview of PMI global and the SA Chapter’s mandate and activities, encouraging members to attend meetings and be part of this growing community of best practice for project management.

The president of the Chapter, Dr Lynn Keeys, then proceeded with an in-depth presentation about the new Business Analysis certification. Information shared included the current relevance and growing need for Business Analysis, statistics supporting the business case for such a certification, projected numbers of BA positions requiring skilled workers in the field, as well as the link between project management and business analysis in delivering not only project but also strategic business goals, value creation and benefits realization.

Lynn’s presentation resulted in an engaged and interactive audience, who were given the opportunity to respond to and ask questions regarding their professional experiences and challenges.

Questions volunteered by members of the audience indicated that business organisations both large and small from diverse sectors experience challenges on a daily basis that could benefit significantly from a deeper understanding and implementation of efficient project management processes. It was also evident that there is a need to strengthen the understanding of how business analysis and project management are two sides of the same strategic coin.

Some of the issues raised and discussed by attendees included relationship challenges such as defining the relationship between the business analyst and the project manager: Is it hierarchical or is BA part of the project team?  Should project managers fulfil both functions? Other issues raised included the differentiation of the role and coordination required between process manager and business analyst, and linking organization concerns with project concerns.

Organizational challenges raised in determining the role of the Business Analyst included the changing perception and transformation of the role of Business Analysts in South Africa required for a dynamic market and increasing organizational agility.  The varied organizational context and culture from which the attendees hailed, also illustrated how business analysis and how the role is defined, differs amongst organisations.

The prolonged and lively Q&A session resulted in the meeting being wrapped up by Marko Divac a bit later than anticipated, with an open invitation to the next Cape Town branch meeting on 24 August. The topic for the next branch meeting is on the role of data in Business Analysis.   Branch meeting presentations will be available to PMI South Africa Chapter members on the members-only portal from 15 August.

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