Bridging the Gap – Frequently Asked Questions About Our Online Courses and Template Toolkits

What courses do you offer on-demand?

We offer 4 individual, 12 credit courses on-demand. These courses are delivered completely online, and you can start at anytime.

What does it mean for a course to be offered on-demand?

On-demand means you can start anytime you’d like – and you have a full 90 days to complete the course and engage with our instructors for individual support.

What instructor support is included with an on-demand course?

As an active participant in any one of our online, on-demand courses, you receive the following instructor support:

  • Answers to questions about applying the course materials in your business analysis work.
  • Expert review of your course workbook (up to 2 reviews per course).
  • Opportunity to join Instructor Hours for small group coaching to talk through your questions or workbook with an instructor.

What are the days and times of the Instructor Hours?

Instructor Hours are scheduled twice each month based on instructor availability. We aim to vary the days and times to meet multiple schedules and time zones, as our participants are located all over the world.

Is there an instructor in my time zone?

Because the majority of instructor support is provided via email and work reviews, it is not necessary that we match you up with an instructor in your specific time zone. And the Instructor Hours are scheduled at different times so that no matter where you are in the world or what your work schedule is, there is typically a session that will work for you.

What order should I take your courses in?

Our online business analysis training courses can be taken in any order and there are no pre-requisites.

However, most participants start with the BA Essentials Master Class to learn how to apply our 8-step process framework for more effectiveness on a BA project.

Other options include:

  • Business Process Analysis – To analyze and improve a business process. This is also great for not-yet-BAs who need an entry-way into applying more BA skills in a business or IT-related role.
  • Use Cases and Wireframes – Perfect for BAs working on software, or functional requirements, and to help resolve challenges of getting business and tech stakeholders on the same page about the requirements.
  • Data Modeling for Business Analysts – A set of techniques that are increasing in importance for BAs, often critical to the success for data migration or systems integration projects and as precursor work to implementing business analytics and intelligence systems effectively.

How long will it take to complete a course?

Each of our courses is valid for 12 credit hours, and that is about the time you can expect to invest in the course + the application of the materials.

The course materials are released over your first 3-4 weeks in the program, and so plan to invest a few hours each week between learning and application. We provide an extra-long 90 day instructor window to give you ample time to complete the course requirements and engage meaningfully with our instructors.

Please note that if you are new to the concepts taught in the course and to business analysis generally, your successful completion of the coursework may require more time. Also, everyone has their own learning style. Some participants investment significantly more time to take advantage of every bit of instructor support possible, and maximize the value of their investment.

Can I get advance access to all the course materials?

Yes, we are happy to help with this situation. When you choose the full pay option and decline your money back guarantee, we can grant you access to all of the materials for a course. We recommend reviewing the first set of materials first to ensure you are satisfied with the course content, and then email us to decline the remainder of your guarantee period. We’ll grant you access to the complete course materials within 2 business days.

Will the BA Master Class be sufficient to get entry-level positions?

Success in obtaining a business analyst position is dependent on many factors – your career experience, your transferable skills, your local job market, how you craft your resume, and how confidently you show up in the interview. For this reason, and out of integrity, we do not guarantee job placement.

We can tell you that we see many participants go on from our programs to secure business analyst positions. The most successful participants are able to apply the course materials on-the-job, even if they are not in a business analyst role, and so they build up transferable work experience while in our training programs.

Specifically, check out Thomas Clarke’s Success Story as an example of someone who invested in the BA Essentials Master Class, and soon after made the transition from Research Analyst to Business Analyst through an internal promotion.

I want to start a career as a BA, but I’ve never worked as a BA or done formal BA work. Which course right for me?

The BA Essentials Master Class is a great starting point to understand what a business analyst does and how work flows on a typical business process improvement and software development project. It’s also a great refresher for professionals coming back from a career break.

The Business Analyst Blueprint® training program is a great way to gain experience in the specific techniques business analysts use, and apply them in your professional role (even if you aren’t formally in a business analyst position).

The programs can be completed in either order. Since we run just 2 live sessions of The Business Analyst Blueprint training program each year, it’s more a matter of timing.

  • If the next session of The Business Analyst Blueprint is starting soon, plan to join us for that.
  • If it’s a few months off and you are ready to get started now, jump into the BA Essentials Master Class.

How will your course help me build hands-on experience writing a Business Requirements Document (BRD) or Functional Requirements Document (FRS) or Software Requirements Specification?

While we don’t teach or provide templates for BRDs or FRSs specifically because we find that many organizations are moving away from longer documentation, even if they aren’t fully going agile, the techniques we teach in each of our courses will help you put together a typical business requirements document or functional / software specification.

And because you apply these techniques on your real-world case studies, you’ll be building hands-on experience.

Here’s how to evaluate the opportunity provided by our courses:

  • BA Essentials Master Class– For the business benefits and scoping information that would go into a BRD.
  • Business Process Analysis – For the business process information that would go into a BRD.
  • Use Cases and Wireframes – Use cases and wireframes are a powerful analytical tools that help you identify the functional / software requirements to go into an FRD or SRS.
  • Data Modeling for Business Analysts – The data modeling techniques covered here, like Entity Relationship Diagrams and Data Mapping, are often a necessary accompaniment to successfully completing an FRD or SRS.

Do you offer personalized training?

All of our online, on-demand courses follow a specific syllabus and cannot be customized for individuals. However, since you choose your own examples to work on for the course and receive individualized instructor support on those work samples, the training is highly individualized.

Can I attend one of your training sessions in-person?

We serve participants from all over the world and fully leverage the benefits of online training to offer a flexible, intensive, individualized learning experience. We do not offer our courses in an in-person format.

I would like to earn 21 PD Hours to be eligible to apply for the ECBA™ or CCBA® exams. How can I do this with Bridging the Gap courses?

Bridging the Gap is an Endorsed Education Provider™ with the International Institute of Business Analysis™ (IIBA®), and so all of our courses are valid for PD and CDUs you may need for the following IIBA certifications: ECBA™, CCBA®, and CBAP®.

Participants needing 21 credit hours will choose 2 of our 12 credit courses to meet these requirements. You can choose the courses in any combination and there are no pre-requisites, but the most common combination is the BA Essentials Master Class and Business Process Analysis.

I would like to earn 35 PD Hours to be eligible to apply for the CBAP®  exam. How can I do this with Bridging the Gap courses?

Bridging the Gap is an Endorsed Education Provider™ with the International Institute of Business Analysis™ (IIBA®), and so all of our courses are valid for PD and CDUs you may need for the following IIBA certifications: ECBA™, CCBA®, and CBAP®.

Participants needing 36 credit hours will choose any 3 of our 12 credit courses to meet these requirements. The Business Analyst Blueprint® training program also offers 36 professional credits.

I have a certification from PMI. Can I use this course credits towards PDUs for PMI-PMP or PMI-PBA?

The Project Management Institute (PMI) is in the process of retiring its Registered Education Provider (REP) program, of which Bridging the Gap has been a participant since 2015, allowing us to guarantee PDUs and Contact Hours towards the PMP and PMI-PBA certification and re-certification.

At this time, we are not planning to apply for their new program and our Registered Education Provider status expires at the close of 2020.

However, as someone who already has their certification from PMI, you can still elect to submit your participation in The Business Analyst Blueprint® training program as part of your re-certification requirements, you may just need to provide additional documentation to support your claim. Be sure to check your re-certification guidelines for these details.

Do you provide a case study for me to use?

We do provide samples of each technique we teach so you can see what the end product should look like, but we do not provide a case study sample for you to work through. When you join one of our on-demand courses, you create your own case study and apply the course materials in your real-world work, even if you aren’t formally in a business analyst position.

We do this because this is how we see participants achieve significant career transformations, often while they are in the course or soon after, and take their careers to the next level. This also means that you get to leverage our instructor support on your real-world project work for the full 90-day window of your course (or 4 months for The Business Analyst Blueprint®).

I’m a contractor or have confidentiality concerns, so I cannot use my active project work. How can I complete the course?

While we do provide guidance inside the programs on choosing a fictitious project to complete the course, you’ll receive the most benefit from the program when you use your active project work. What’s more, this means the work you do to complete the course is part of the work you are doing anyway. Many participants experience immediate wins when they use their active project work, as their current project work improves and gets noticed by managers, stakeholders, and clients.

Rest assured that all work submitted for individual instructor review is kept confidential between you and your instructor. And if you still have concerns, you can edit aspects of your documents to blur out any private information.

How quickly will I receive feedback from my instructor?

All questions are answered within 2 business days, and all workbooks are reviewed within 5 business days.

Does the course provide support for job seekers, like resume reviews or job interview prep.

All of our on-demand courses focus on helping you build your on-the-job experience and business analyst skills. Resumes reviews and interview preparation are not included. We can connect you with one of our trusted partners for these additional services.

What is The Business Analyst Blueprint® training program and when is the next session scheduled?

The Business Analyst Blueprint® is our most comprehensive program which runs for 4 months and includes the following modules: Business Process Analysis, Use Cases and Wireframes, and Data Modeling for Business Analysts.

The content of each module is identical to the on-demand versions of the courses, but since The Business Analyst Blueprint® is an interactive session, it also includes additional live webinar sessions and Instructor Hours calls to help with project selection and to get your questions answered in real-time. It also represents significant savings over investing in each of the 3 modules separately.

Click here to learn more about the next session – if we are not currently in an open registration period, you can join the interest list to be the first to receive pre-registration details.

How can I join the Circle of Success coaching program?

The Circle of Success coaching program provides career coaching to cultivate your growth mindset so you can achieve more success in your business analyst career.

Many members join before or after their first course with us.

Click here to learn more about the Circle of Success coaching program – if we are not currently in an open registration period, you can join the interest list to be the first to know when we re-open the program, which typically happens twice each year.

Do you offer on-the-job support?

Yes, we offer on-the-job support through our Circle of Success coaching program.

How can I work with Laura Brandenburg 1-1?

Laura Brandenburg does not offer 1-1 coaching services. The best way to work with Laura Brandenburg currently is through our Circle of Success coaching program.

Can I review samples of the Template Toolkits before purchasing?

Yes! Click here to watch a video showing samples from each of the 5 template toolkits we offer at Bridging the Gap.

Can I get a discount, scholarship, or financial aid on your courses or templates?

We appreciate that in today’s economy, everyone is looking for the best value for their money. We do run specials from time to time, provide team training discounts for 3+ participants joining the same course from the same team, and offer past course participants a customer loyalty discount on future course investments. The best way to be sure to hear about our specials is to join our email list.

Outside of these special offers, we have found that the financial investment for our courses represents an equitable number for participants and for us. What’s more, we’ve found that making the financial investment leads to making the time investment, which leads to successful completion of the course.

We understand that now might not be the time to make the financial investment in a course, and invite you to benefit from our expansive collection of free resources until the time is right.

Can I pay in different installments or get an extended payment plan?

All of our courses offer payment plan options and these are the best offers we can provide, as they are split across the duration of your 90-day instructor support window.

We do not offer payment plans on our template toolkits since the entire download is delivered immediately upon making your investment.

I want to invest in multiple courses at once. Can I get a bundle offer?

While it is atypical for our course participants to invest in more than 1 of our courses at a time, certain circumstances make this a good approach – such as a sabbatical from work, downtime between projects, or a period of time off before starting a new job.

Each individual course includes 90 days of instructor support from the day you start the course (or make your investment). When participants choose to invest in 2+ courses at a time, we can extend the instructor support time for 6 months total for all the courses you start.

As far as bundling, each of the on-demand courses is priced at $1297 individually. We offer a 10% customer loyalty discount on subsequent courses, so your second and third course options would be $1167.30.

If you’d like to purchase 3+ courses at once, we can offer you the 10% discount on all the courses for a lump sum investment of $3501.90. Please contact us for these logistics. (This offer cannot be combined with any other special offers.)

I’d like to speak to someone before I join one of your programs. How can I do that?

We are a virtual organization with team members in 3 countries and multiple states within the United States, work in multiple time zones, and we offer customer and instructor support via email, online communication tools, and pre-scheduled webinar sessions.

We find the best way to communicate with customers prior to making a purchasing decision is using these same tools. If you have a specific question about our training programs that is not answered on this page, please email us at info [at] bridging-the-gap [dot] com and we’ll reply within 2 business days. If for some reason we cannot answer your question via email, we’ll provide a link to schedule a brief personal consultation.