As a Functional Analyst, it’s of the highest importance to expand, improve and refine your skills. One way of doing that? Read books!
There’s an abundance of great – and less great – online resources which can be used to facilitate this process. However, with these type of resources, you often jump from one tutorial to the other. Each time you have to deal with a different author whose opinionated view and approach can differ from the previous author’s. This might leave you unnecessarily confused and it might prove more difficult this way to get a good overview of the subject you’re studying. This is why books still are very relevant and useful when learning new subjects related to IT. Books offer authors with – almost always – a proven track-record, a consistent view, a consistent approach and a full and in-depth coverage of the subject.
Below, you’ll find a list of books about topics that are very relevant to junior functional analysts at the start of their professional career, willing to hone their skills. Happy reading!
Books with a relevant topic for functional analysts
1. Agile Estimating and Planning
This book provides an introduction to Agile concepts and covers topics like Scrum and Agile planning.
- Author: Mike Cohn
- Topic: Agile Software Development
2. The Sketchnote Handbook
While not focused solely on facilitation, this book introduces visual note-taking techniques that can be valuable for facilitating workshops and meetings.
- Author: Mike Rohde
- Topic: Facilitation
3. Business Model Generation
This book explores the Business Model Canvas, a widely-used tool in business analysis.
- Authors: Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur
- Topic: Business Analysis
4. User Story Mapping
Learn about story mapping, a technique used for high-level analysis and visualizing the user’s journey.
- Author: Jeff Patton
- Topic: High-Level Analysis
5. User Stories Applied: For Agile Software Development
This book provides a beginner-friendly introduction to writing user stories in Agile projects.
- Author: Mike Cohn
- Topic: User Stories
6. UML Distilled: A Brief Guide to the Standard Object Modeling Language
This book offers a concise introduction to UML and its various diagrams.
- Author: Martin Fowler
- Topic: UML
7. Don’t Make Me Think
While not specific to mockups and screen flows, this book is an excellent starting point for understanding user-centered design principles.
- Author: Steve Krug
- Topic: UI/UX Design
8. Agile Testing: A Practical Guide for Testers and Agile Teams
This book covers various aspects of Agile testing, including writing acceptance criteria and User Acceptance Testing (UAT).
- Authors: Lisa Crispin and Janet Gregory
- Topic: Testing
9. Software Architecture in Practice
This book introduces software architecture principles and considerations, including non-functional requirements and web service design.
- Authors: Len Bass, Paul Clements, and Rick Kazman
- Topic: Application Architecture
10. SQL For Dummies
A beginner-friendly guide to SQL, covering database basics and query writing.
- Author: Allen G. Taylor
- Topic: Databases
11. A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) – Sixth Edition
While not strictly for beginners, this is a foundational resource for project management that covers forecasting and risk management.
- Author: Project Management Institute (PMI)
- Topic: Project Management
These books are great starting points for beginners in each respective area. Depending on your specific interests and needs, you can choose the books that align best with your learning goals.