Business Analysis (BA) is the process of facilitating change in the organizational context, by defining requirements and formulating solutions that deliver utility and value to the stakeholders. This process has been gaining enormous reach and recognition in all sorts of industries that employ different varieties of Project Management methodologies. To pick and choose the apt Business Analyst, apart from the number of years of experience, companies rely on certifications held by the applying candidates, which makes them stand out from the rest. 




Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP®) certification empowers you to master the immense skills of business analysis including exceptional documentation, efficient and effective planning, and developing business solutions.  


Professional in Business Analysis (PMI-PBA®) is the most drastically growing certifications in the subject-matter of Business Analysis and Project Management. PMI-PBA® professionals know how to elicit information from stakeholders, collect and analyze data, identify and recommend solutions, and establish consensus for action.


Certifying Authority




It is granted by the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA®). It is a not-for-profit association aiding the flourishing field of business analysis. It is one amongst the global thought leaders and the sole voice of the entire business analysis community.




It is offered by the Project Management Institute (PMI). It is the world’s leading non-profit professional association for the program, portfolio and project management profession.






  • In the last 10 years, at least 7500 hours of Business Analysis Work experience.
  • Within the 7500 hours, completion of at least 900 hours in each of the 4 out of 6 BABOK® Guide Knowledge Areas 
  • In the last 4 years, at least 35 hours of Professional Development.
  • Two References – either from a CBAP, client, or a career manager.




Option 1:




  • Secondary degree (associate’s degree / high school diploma)
  • 35 contact hours in business analysis




  • In the last 8 years, at least 7500 hours (5 years) in Business Analysis




Option 2:




  • Any Bachelor’s degree or its globally recognized equivalent
  • 35 contact hours in business analysis




  • In the last 8 years, at least 4500 hours (3 years) in Business Analysis.


Examination Blueprint 




  • Based on – Business Analysis Body of Knowledge (BABOK®)
  • No.of Questions – 120 multiple choice
  • Duration – 3.5 hours
  • Break – not permitted during the exam


Domain 1 Business analysis planning and monitoring 14%
Domain 2 Elicitation and collaboration 12%
Domain 3 Requirements life cycle management 15%
Domain 4 Strategy analysis 15%
Domain 5 Requirements analysis and design definition 30%
Domain 6 Solution evaluation 14%




  • Based on – Business Analysis Body of Knowledge (PMBOK®)
  • Questions
    • Total no.of Questions – 200 (multiple-choice)
    • No. of Pre-test Questions (Unscored) – 25
    • No. of Scored Questions – 175
  • Duration – 4 hours
  • Break – permitted during the exam


Domain 1 Needs Assessment (5 tasks) 18%
Domain 2 Planning (6 tasks) 22%
Domain 3 Analysis (8 tasks) 35%
Domain 4 Traceability and Monitoring (5 tasks) 15%
Domain 5 Evaluation (4 tasks) 10%


Available Languages


Apart from English, the CBAP® exam has been translated into Japanese and is available at test centers in Japan.


As of now, the PMI-PBA® certification examination is offered in English only.






  • Application fee – US$125 
  • Exam fee 
    • Member – $450
    • Non-Member – $450
    • Corporate Member – $290
  • Exam Rewrite Fee 
    • Member – $250
    • Non-Member -$375
  • Special 20% Discount applicable on exam fee and exam rewrite fee, until Dec 31, 2019.




The cost of both Computer-based & Paper-based test administration types is the same


Member of PMI: US$405 (340 Euros)


Non-member: US$555 (465 Euros)


Which is better?


That’s a tough question. PMI-PBA® is for business analysts who undertake projects and programs and have sufficient project management experience in their career. Contrastingly, IIBA® views Business Analysis in a much wider perspective and comprises of activities that exceed beyond project and program and applies to the entire organizational initiative.


Both certifications are significant because they validate the fact that business analysis is crucial. Holding both will certainly heighten your resume credentials.


The key difference can be found if you go through the Course Guides of both certifications. The IIBA® BABOK is equipped not only for the business analysis role at the project level but goes up to enterprise-level, where business analysis is done for understanding the tactics and strategies peculiar to an organization. Whereas, the PMI-PBA® guide is directed a bit further toward working on agile initiative projects in association with the project management role.


Final Word


If you’ve been like a cat on the wall for a while, we guarantee you that now the best time to begin your Business Analyst career considering the rise in opportunities recently. Although we have looked into the merits of opting either of the certifications, the choice ultimately lies in your hands. One thing for sure is that once you are done acquiring either of the certifications, you’re guaranteed to receive offers and callbacks from a substantial number of recruiters.

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