Susan Vongkhotsombat

Business Systems Analyst

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc.


Tips and Info:

There is a high need for project management skills from business systems analysts.

Becoming an expert in Microsoft tools (Excel, Word, Visio, Project) to visually translate information is very helpful for this role.

Being able to interpret what non-technical users are telling you and conveying that to technical users is essential.

Decisions are data-driven for upper management; being able to understand data at a higher level and do forecasting is highly sought after.

It's important to be able to facilitate meetings and take good meeting minutes.

Be sure to detail what was on the agenda and what action items the team has.

Share your meeting minutes with attendees to make sure everyone is on the same page.

It is helpful to understand data management, trending, and collaborative tools.

Some examples would be:

Microsoft Power BI



Microsoft Sharepoint

What's the difference between a Business Systems Analyst (BSA) and a Business Process Analyst (BPA)?

A BSA is more involved with application software and development.

A BSA needs to understand what the user wants while developing requirements.

A BPA deals with process changes involving work instructions, standard operating procedures, and organizational policies.

Both roles are very engaged with stakeholders at a high level.

Work hard, take initiative, and never burn bridges.

Honest is the best policy, as well as transparency.

Transparency makes sure that team members have insight into what you're doing and allows for more effective collaboration.

In order to be a productive team, it's important to be honest and upfront.

Recommended book:

Radical Candor

A degree can help you secure an interview, but it's not going to secure the job, it's your characteristics that will.

Be genuine, trustworthy, and someone who takes initiative while also being a pleasure to work with.

Show that you know how to prioritize tasks and that you're able to adapt to change.

"Figure out how to figure it out" - Professor Blair Baker

Certifications are also key. Bosses want people who can get things done now, so someone who is certified in that task has an advantage.

Recommended certifications:



It's good to build rapport and shadow IT, they can help you learn and understand the tools you use.

Try not to be around complainers, or at least try not to engage or participate.

Never say "I don't get paid enough to do this" or "this is not my job" with things that need to get done.

Staying motivated is a mental thing, it's what you tell yourself.

Meditation can be a great tool for mental strengthening.

During times of uncertainty, don't dwell on negative things, be grateful for all the things and people you have.

When feeling overwhelmed, deal with what's immediately in front of you, then deal with the rest.

Reduce anxiety by having things that you can control in your life. Cooking, reading, working out.

Having a hobby really helps balance work and life.


MIS Society

CSUSM College of Business Administration

CSU San Marcos

333 S. Twin Oaks Valley Rd.,

San Marcos, CA 92096

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