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Make a U-turn to IT

It was getting dark. In my case, my career had been created during 20 years in a reputable financial institution that granted stability in various political environments. However, turbulent political events in Ukraine and dramatic inflation in the middle of 2010th brought clear markers of downgrading changes, particularly in banking systems. To express a general perception, I can say: life has got a groundhog day style, laden by salary in national currency. I was 44 years old at that time, by the way.

Boredom and desire for bigger adventures made me think about the possibility of switching to IT. Having a technical background (an engineering degree, it's not a piece of cake) and a good level of English (I thought it was), I started to learn Java by myself after contemplating the advice of some experts. In four months, I obtained some tangible results. However, as often happens, another routine distracted my focus from the subject.

Later I saw in a LinkedIn timeline that my friend passed CBAP certification. I applied for consultation and concluded that Business Analysis (BA- further) would be more realistic in my case than coding. Eventually, I managed a loans monitoring department, and even more – I drank coffee with smart people from the IT department.

The mentioned CBAP nominee recommended me to enroll in a course "Art of Business Analysis" led by Denys Gobov ( I was not sure that the Application fee was a reasonable price for five days of "BA deep dive". However, boredom makes miracles. In advance, I had read BABOK twice. By the way, BABOK is a bible of business analysis, and it seems to be written for sinners...

So, the course had begun. Denys described the various levels of processes in a clear, intelligible way Sometimes, when I heard some terminology like 'requirements', 'feature', 'ARTIFACT', I felt like a Hero of Might and Magic: hop by hop and – Artefact! – BANG! Brilliant…

However, I had been approaching the thought step by step that BA is a curious subject and, as foreigners tend to say – it's not rocket science! Actually, the course enrolment was one of the best life investments.

Anyway, in summary, without jokes: Denis has an incredible natural teaching ability (revealing a secret – he's a vice president of IIBA in Ukraine). Those five days gave me a core understanding of what a BA is in IT and lit up my curiosity about this area.

The next half year was dedicated to self-education in BA knowledge arias. Thanks to the course, I was acquainted with many experienced BAs and related specialists, so there was no lack of advice on what to read and what to learn. Yes, it was an exciting process; plus, it was already a BA activity – examining related areas of knowledge and application tools for formation of structural understanding about a subject.

During this half-year period, I applied for several vacancies and failed them properly. No worries – I knew that I was not ready yet. Eventually, in the end, I felt that I was ready to start.

So, I was proposed to be interviewed for the fin-tech project in Odesa (Kyiv is my origination). Yes, it was passed successfully, and, in a week, I was provided with an offer to enroll in a reputable outsourcing company!

…she was, as usual, in daily balancing the budget at work when I asked:

  • "Dear wife, I've got a proposition to work in Odessa. Will you let me go?"

  • – She replied: 'easily, no worries!'

  • - okay

  • -'…. Wait a minute. It's a joke, isn't it ?!'

  • Nope, and thank you, darling! All formality is settled!'

So, I reached Odessa and started my first BA journey in IT. The project had a start-up configuration in the fin-tech area (…architectural commercial secret….). Everything was new for me in this way, but the dev team consists of fabulous engineers (I do not include myself to this level as even my English appeared not as good as I assumed) whose effort brought value to the Client, regardless of …...

A year later was another project in Pharmaceutics. It was a solid enterprise with more stable developing processes that made me feel more suitable and productive.

Resuming the above, it's not the most appropriate time for humor. However, this essay probably was written to bring some ideas to those who are balancing on the swing "to be or not to be":

  • BA in IT it's not an easy practice, but undoubtedly - interesting and exciting.

  • Business Analysts have a lot of work. They need to settle proper communication with the client and dev team (launch stakeholders to a single alive net to produce a result in concrete terms)

  • If you tend to produce standard monthly reports and operate in a steady routine, probably BA/IT is not for you. BA is about requirements elicitation, formalization, and creativity in approach to various stages/styles of projects.

  • Your age is not a stumbling block on the way to starting something from the initial stage to achieve financial stability, …. wherever you need it.

  • As for now, I would say tech education is a "nice to have" condition. Nevertheless, there is a lot of genius without it. Basic conditions, in my opinion, are mathematical inclinations, readiness for communication & reaching a compromise, and capability to bring a deal to the result.

  • Working in IT – is a practical integration of western values in straight and portable meaning, avoiding pompous and idle declarations.

  • IT guys occasionally describe their work by the phrase 'rowing in the galley', but frankly speaking, I haven't seen many of them earning a cab and switching to the taxi driver to get far from the monitor and closer to people.

  • So, as mentioned in the advertisement in the dashing 1990th: 'your voucher - your choice'!

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