Professional in Business Analysis (PMI-PBA)® Certification

Business Analysis

The Project Management Institute (PMI)® has defined business analysis as "the evaluation of an organization's needs – followed by the identification and management of requirements – to arrive at a solution." In short, it is the discipline of working with stakeholders to define an organization's requirements in order to shape the output of projects and ensure they deliver the expected business benefit.

Recently PMI has decided to put a significant emphasis on the practice of requirements management, even launching the Requirements Management Knowledge Center of Excellence (CoE). As part of this CoE, they are developing a Business Analysis Practice Guide which links Business Analysis practices with the Requirements Management section of the PMBOK v5 and are planning to come out with the Practice Guide in Requirements Analysis in 2014. To drive adoption, they have developed the Professional in Business Analysis (PMI-PBA)® Certification.

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PMI-PBA Certification

The PMI-PBA Certification carries a high level of professional credibility as it recognizes individual expertise in business analysis as well as the tools and techniques used to improve the overall success of projects. The certification shows that the individual can wear both the Business Analyst and Project Manager "hat" within a project.

The first step in the development of this certification is the pilot phase which begins May 12th, 2014 and is also when PMI will start taking applications. The certification exam for the pilot will run through August 4th, 2014.

Eligibility Requirements

  With HS Diploma, Associate's Degree or Global Equivalent With Bachelor's Degree or Global Equivalent
Minimum Business Analysis Experience 7,500 hours within the past 8 years 4,500 hours within the past 8 years
Project Team Experience* 2,000 hours within the past 8 years 2,000 hours within the past 8 years
Business Analysis Education 35 hours 35 hours

*If you have a PMP® or PgMP® you do not need to show any project team hours, your credential covers the hour requirements. Also, you can overlap your BA experience requirement with your project experience requirement, if applicable.

Application Process

Once you start the application process you have 90 days to complete it. It takes five business days for an electronic application to be reviewed. Individual paper applications take 10 business days and corporate paper applications take 20 business days. You cannot schedule your exam until your application has been approved and fees have been paid. If you are audited, you must present a higher level of detail related to your business analysis experience and will have 90 days to respond. You will not be eligible for certification until your audit is complete. PMI reviews audit materials in 5-7 days. You have one year to take the exam after you application has been approved and you can retake the exam three times during that year.

Fee Structure

In order to submit your application for PMI-PBA certification you must be aware of the fee structure and eligibility requirements.

  PMI Member Non-member
Computer-based Testing $405 $555
Paper-based Testing $250 $400
Re-examination CBT $275 $375
Re-examination PBT $150 $300
CCR Certification Renewal $60 $150

*Re-exam PBT is not available during pilot.


PMI-PBA Exam Content Overview

PMI-PBA Exam Blueprint

Scored Questions
Unscored Questions
Total Exam Questions
Allotted Examination Time
4 Hours
*Examination is preceded by a tutorial and followed by a survey. Both are optional.
Examination Administration
Prometric CBT Site
Corporate Sponsors
  Percentage of Questions
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%
Total: 100%
Domain 1: Needs Assessment (18%)
Understanding business problems, evaluating options, and finding solutions
Task 1 Define or review a problem, use problem or opportunity analysis techniques, develop scope statement to provide business case input
Task 2 Use valuation tools and techniques to determine value proposition of initiative
Task 3 Provide clarification of business needs and solution scope to align product with organization's goals and objectives
Task 4 Identify stakeholders
Task 5 Determine stakeholder values using elicitation techniques to provide baseline for prioritizing requirements
Domain 2: Planning (22%)
Managing business analysis activities by establishing requirements management plan, requirements traceability, change management document control, and acceptance criteria
Task 1 Use business case and project goals and objectives to plan activities
Task 2 Define requirements traceability, use traceability tools and techniques to monitor and validate requirements
Task 3 Develop requirements management plan. Identify stakeholders, roles and responsibilities, communication protocols and methods for eliciting, analyzing, documenting, managing and approving requirements
Task 4 Develop methods of requirements change control to hand managing changes and incorporate into the change management plan
Task 5 Select methods of document control. Use documentation management tools and techniques for a standard tied to requirements traceability and versioning
Task 6 Define business metrics and acceptance criteria by collaborating with stakeholders for use in evaluating when the solution meets the requirements
Domain 3: Analysis (35%)
Requirements management activities including elicitation, analysis, decomposition, acceptance, approval, specification, and validation of the requirements for a product or project
Task 1 Elicit or identify requirements using elicitation techniques in order to discover or capture requirements with supporting details (origin or rationale)
Task 2 Analyze, decompose, and elaborate requirements using techniques such as dependency analysis, interface analysis, and data and process modeling to find product options and capabilities
Task 3 Use decision-making and valuation techniques to accept, defer or reject requirements
Task 4 Allocate accepted or deferred requirements by balancing scope schedule, budget, and resources constraints with the value proposition using prioritization, dependency analysis and decision-making tools and techniques
Task 5 Obtain sign-off on requirements baseline, use techniques to facilitate stakeholder approval
Task 6 Write requirements specification using tools (like use cases or user stories), to communicate requirements that are measurable and actionable
Task 7 Validate requirements using tools to ensure requirements are complete, accurate and aligned with goals, objectives, and value propositions
Task 8 Build acceptance criteria metrics to validate whether the solution meets requirements
Domain 4: Traceability and Monitoring (15%)
Managing the life cycle of requirements. Tasks include continuous monitoring and documenting of requirements as well as communicating status to stakeholders
Task 1 Track requirements using traceability artifice or tools, capturing the requirements' status, sources, and relationship to show proof of delivery
Task 2 Monitor requirements throughout lifecycle using tools like models, documentation and test cases
Task 3 Update requirements status through its lifecycle. Communicate changes and track
Task 4 Communicate requirements status to project manager and other stakeholders
Task 5 Manage changes to requirements in accordance to the change control plan
Domain 5: Evaluation (10%)
Assessment of how well the delivered solution fulfills the requirements and meets the business needs. Tasks within this domain include testing the solution, determining if there are gaps, and obtaining sign-offs
Task 1 Validate the solutions test results, reports, and other test evidence against the requirements acceptance criteria to determine solutions match to need
Task 2 Analyze and communicate the solution's identified haps and deltas using quality assurance tools and methods in order to enable stakeholders to resolve discrepancies between solution scope, requirements, and developed solution.
Task 3 Obtain stakeholder sign-off on the developed solution using decision-making techniques in order to proceed with deployment
Task 4 Evaluate the deployed solution using valuation techniques in order to determine how well solution meets the business case and value proposition

Knowledge and Skill Areas Covered

There are forty knowledge and skill areas covered in the PMI-PBA certification exam. The top 20 include:

  1. Analytical tools and techniques
  2. Backlog management
  3. Business rules analysis and techniques
  4. Change control tools and techniques
  5. Data analysis tools and techniques
  6. Development methodologies including Agile
  7. Elicitation tools and techniques
  8. Facilitation tools and techniques
  9. Interface analysis (prototyping/storyboarding)
  10. Planning tools and techniques
  11. Prioritization tools and techniques
  12. Problem solving and opportunity identification
  13. Process analysis
  14. Requirements traceability tools and techniques
  15. Requirement types
  16. Root cause analysis
  17. Stakeholder analysis
  18. Validation tools and techniques
  19. Valuation tools and techniques
  20. Version control tools and techniques

Continuing Certification Requirements (CCR)

The PMI-PBA certification cycle is three years from the date you passed the PMI-PBA exam. PMI-PBA certification holders must maintain a minimum of 60 professional development units (PDUs) in a specialized area of business analysis (PBA PDUs). However, you cannot have more than 45 Category D PDUs. Category D PDUs are earned by creating new knowledge for business analysis. Qualifying activities include authoring or co-authoring a business analysis textbook, peer-reviewed article or article for PMI's Knowledge shelf, presenting a webinar or podcast, creating or developing a course or serving as a speaker or moderator for a relevant presentation.

Only 20 PDUs can be carried over to another cycle. Meaning, if you earn more than 60 PDUs in your three year certification cycle, a maximum of 20 PDUs will be applied towards your next continuing certification cycle.

Finally, you PBA PDUs can count towards your PMP or PgMP certification. However, PMP PDUs, PDUs specific to the area of project management, cannot be counted towards PMI-PBA certification. For further explanation on obtaining and maintaining multiple PMI certifications, please see page 45 in the PMI Professional in Business Analysis (PMI-PBA) handbook.


PMI, PMI-ACP, PMP and PgMP are registered marks of the Project Management Institute, Inc.

Courses related to this certification:
  • Education

PMI Member: $405
PMI Non-Member: $555

Exam Details

200 multiple choice questions over 4 hours proctored at Prometric testing facility

Exam questions based on PMI-PBA Exam Content Outline

Required Education

Secondary degree (high school or equivalent)

Four-year degree (bachelor's degree or equivalent)

Required Experience

7,500 hours of business analysis experience; 2,000 hours working on project teams (PMP will suffice)


4,500 hours of business analysis experience; 2,000 hours working on project teams

Required Training

35 contact hours of business analysis training approved by PMI (PMI-PBA PDUs)

Other Requirement Details

Comply wth PMI Code of Ethics (


60 PDUs/3 years

Must be compliant with PMI Talent Triangle (