Your complete guide to Salesforce business analyst certification

May 2, 2023

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Considering a new career in Salesforce? Or wondering how to take it to the next level? Becoming a Salesforce Business Analyst is a great option. In this article, we’ll go over everything you need to know about Salesforce business analyst certification.

I’m including why it’s valuable. And how to achieve it. Plus, we’ll dive into a “real-life” case study to show you just how impactful a Salesforce Business Analyst can be.

But first, let’s start with some hot of the press news as per May 2, 2023: “Effective today, the Salesforce Administrator Certification will no longer be required prior to earning the Salesforce Business Analyst Certification.” Yahoo!! that’s just great news for those who are interested in a purely non-technical role in the Salesforce universe.

What’s the Salesforce business analyst certification?

Salesforce Business Analyst certification is a programme that’s designed to teach you the skills you need to analyse business processes and optimise Salesforce implementations. By obtaining this certification, you’ll be able to help companies identify areas of improvement, streamline processes, and increase efficiency.

The Salesforce Business Analyst certification program consists of a series of courses and exams that cover a range of topics, including Salesforce basics, business analysis principles, and project management methodologies. Salesforce administers this certification programme. This means that you can be confident that the certification is recognised and respected in the industry.

Why become a Salesforce business analyst?

You might want to consider becoming a Salesforce Business Analyst for several compelling reasons. For one, Salesforce is a rapidly growing technology platform that’s used by a wide range of businesses, from small startups to large corporations. As such, there is a growing demand for professionals who have the skills and expertise to optimise Salesforce implementations.

Additionally, becoming a Salesforce Business Analyst can help you advance your career. This certification demonstrates that you have a deep understanding of business analysis principles and how they apply to Salesforce. As such, it can help you stand out in a crowded job market and open up new career opportunities.

Steps to becoming a Salesforce business Analyst

If you’re interested in becoming a Salesforce Business Analyst, there are several steps you’ll need to take. Here’s an overview of what you can expect:

  1. Gain Experience in Salesforce: To become a Salesforce Business Analyst, you’ll need to have a solid understanding of the Salesforce platform. This means gaining experience in areas such as Salesforce administration, configuration, and customisation. Salesforce recommends 2+ years of Admin experience as a minimum.
  2. Learn Business Analysis Principles: In addition to Salesforce expertise, you’ll need to have a strong foundation in business analysis principles. This includes understanding how to gather requirements, analyse processes, and optimise workflows. Again, Salesforce recommends 2+ years of BA experience.
  3. Take Salesforce Business Analyst Courses: Salesforce offers a series of courses on Trailhead, its training platform. This trail is specifically designed to prepare you for the Business Analyst certification exam. These courses cover a range of topics, including business analysis principles, project management methodologies, and more. (See next section below).
  4. Pass the Salesforce Business Analyst Certification Exam: Once you’ve completed the courses, you’ll need to register and pass the Salesforce Business Analyst certification exam. This exam consists of multiple-choice questions and is designed to test your knowledge of Salesforce and business analysis principles. You can take the exam online or in any of its designated training centres. These days, you can take the exam also in certain Salesforce offices during ‘certification days’.

Exam breakdown

This exam will weigh each of the following topics as follows:

  • Customer Discovery: 17%.
  • Collaboration with Stakeholders: 24%
  • Business Process Mapping: 16%
  • Requirements: 17%
  • User Stories: 18%
  • User Acceptance: 8%.

In the Discovery course, you’ll learn about

  • Stakeholders
  • Work streams
  • Change management
  • Application Lifecycle Management
  • Product roadmaps
  • Release notes
  • Salesforce Customer 360.

In the Stakeholders course, you’ll learn about

  • Lead discovery
  • Agile
  • Whiteboarding
  • Journey map
  • Process design
  • Solution roadmap
  • Technical debt.

The Business Processes training talks about

  • Functional ownership
  • Version control
  • Capability map
  • Scope
  • Process map
  • Stakeholders.

The Requirements Review course explains

  • Pain points
  • Well-defined requirements
  • Lifecycle
  • Change sets
  • Business needs
  • Dependencies.

The course on User Stories teaches you all about

  • Acceptance criteria
  • Implementation
  • Testing
  • Sign-offs
  • Definition of done
  • Version controlled repository.

And last, the User Acceptance training covers the following concepts you’ll need for the exam:

  • Test scripts
  • Compliance
  • Testers
  • Go/no-go
  • Collaboration
  • Feedback
  • Data collection
  • Stakeholder sign-off.

This overview will already give you a snapshot what a Salesforce Business Analyst certification stands for, and thus what you will need to study for the exam.

It has a passing score of 72%. You will get 60 scored questions. Salesforce will add 5 extra questions which will not affect your score. Costs are $200 or equivalent in your local area. Be sure to ask around though, and take advantage of times where you can get a discounted or free exam voucher.

And, check out the link to the Trailhead courses below.

Case study: how a Salesforce business analyst transformed a company

To illustrate the impact that a Salesforce Business Analyst can have, let’s take a look at this sample case study.

ABC Company was a medium-sized business that had been struggling to manage its customer data. The company had been using Salesforce for several years. But the implementation was disjointed. And inefficient. That is: Customer data was spread across multiple systems, and the sales team was struggling to keep up with lead management and follow-up.

Enter Jane, a Salesforce Business Analyst who obtained her certification a few years ago. Jane was tasked with optimising ABC Company’s Salesforce implementation and improving the company’s overall efficiency.

A typical BA approach

Here’s how Jane approached the project:

  1. Analyse Current Processes: Jane started by analysing ABC Company’s current processes to identify areas of improvement. She spent time speaking with stakeholders to understand their pain points and challenges, and also reviewed data to gain a better understanding of how the company was using Salesforce. (We use many analytical tools at CloudAnalysts. But in general, a Discovery workshop with follow-up interviews are a common way of data collection.)
  2. Develop a Plan: Based on her analysis, Jane developed a plan for optimising ABC Company’s Salesforce implementation. This plan included consolidating customer data into a single system, streamlining lead management workflows, and developing custom reports and dashboards to help the sales team better track their performance.
  3. Implement Changes: With a plan in place, Jane began implementing the changes. She worked closely with the IT department. They ensured that the changes were made in a way that was both efficient and effective. She also provided training and support to the sales team to ensure that they were comfortable using the new workflows and tools.
  4. Measure Results: Finally, Jane measured the results of the changes to determine their impact. She found that ABC Company was able to close leads more quickly, reduce the amount of time spent on administrative tasks, and improve overall customer satisfaction.

Thanks to Jane’s efforts, ABC Company was able to transform its Salesforce implementation and improve its overall efficiency. The company was able to better manage its customer data, streamline its lead management processes, and provide its sales team with the tools they needed to succeed.

Your next steps

Becoming a Salesforce Business Analyst can be a great career move for anyone looking to advance their career in the Salesforce ecosystem. By obtaining the certification, you’ll have the foundational skills and expertise needed to analyse business processes, optimise Salesforce implementations, and provide real value to your organisation.

Interested in becoming a Salesforce Business Analyst? Follow the steps outlined above:

  • Gain experience in Salesforce,
  • Learn business analysis principles either on the job, and/or ..
  • Take Salesforce Business Analyst course (Trailhead is a great start), and
  • Pass the certification exam.

The BA exam is relatively easy exam to pass. This is particularly true if you already have some years as the Salesforce Admin certifications and other certs. The Salesforce exam questions are written in a certain way. Once you figure out how the questions are structured, you can practice this style of questioning. That certainly helps to build your test taking skills! Gotta have them.

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