We have compiled the top 20 system analyst interview questions that might be asked in an interview to test various aspects of system analysis skills, with tips and a sample answer for each of them. These system analyst interview questions will help employers to assess whether each candidate has the required knowledge and experience in performing system analysis.
1. According To You, What Is The Basic Role Of A Computer System Analyst?
The interviewer here wants to assess if you have ample knowledge regarding your subject. This is one of the most common questions you will encounter during your interview.
Tip #1: Revise the key points in your head promptly. Make it so prompt that the interviewer could not assess that you are mulling over it.
Tip #2: Be precise. Just let them know that you possess the knowledge they want from you.
First of all, a computer system analyst should provide a suitable user-friendly system through his/her analysis and evaluation skills.
Secondly, a system analyst should always recommend other possible adaptable solutions and within that, he/she should suggest what will be the quality solution as well as a cost-effective solution for a particular situation.
Thirdly, the analyst should create explicitly detailed specifications that will be easy to understand for a programmer as well as end-users.
Fourthly, the analyst should prepare a system design that is logical at the same time it should be modular in nature.
2. Can You Share Some Of Your Experience In The Most Recent Computer Programming Projects?
Before hiring any candidate the interviewer makes sure that the person is experienced enough to deal with shortfalls occurring in the job tenure.
Tip #1: Which are your most recent experiences? Think of those in mind. It can be anything from a college project to a training program.
Tip #2: Make sure that your experience is relevant to what the interviewer is expecting. Keep it short, informative, and simple.
In my present organization, I have successfully managed to finish a project regarding ABC working as a system analyst. Considering the user’s requirement, I undertook a feasibility analysis. After which I utilized the feasibility analysis report to come up with a system specification analysis. System specification analysis gave me an insight into the functional specification which ultimately enabled me to draw a logical and cost-effective design and test plan.
After that when the system was implemented through programmers again I evaluated the system based on the requirements. Few changes were required which I implemented and sent it back to the programmers. After the revision, it came out perfectly according to the requirement which initiated the deployment process. It’s now under the deployment process. After that maintenance work will follow and a feedback mechanism established. It was a great experience for me.
3. Explain The Process Of Analyzing The Existing System.
This system analyst interview question is simple, yet the interviewer wants to know whether you are aware of the protocols associated with system analysis.
Tip #1: Prepare a checklist in your mind.
Tip #2: Ensure that you stick to the checklist made and do not fumble in-between.
Well, to analyze an existing system:
- I have to analyze the system and its execution, note down the key personnel working on the system, and spend some time with the operating personnel to observe the finer details of the system performance.
- Then I have to define the scope and objective of the system and collect all-important output and documents of the system.
- After that, I have to make a guideline, note down the checkpoints and controls used in the system, study the data flow between units, understand output reports, memos, statements, etc. and create a base document to present before management.
- Feasibility analysis is very important after that which will determine whether the system met the intended objective or not. If there is any deviation I should be in a position to draw a revised system flow chart and discuss it with the operating personnel.
- Comparing the cost-effectiveness of the new system with the old is very important after that.
- If the revised system is cost-effective and needed, then after getting permission from the decision-makers about the revised version of the system, it should start with the documentation writing for departmental use.
4. How Will You Differentiate Between Functional And Non-Functional Requirements?
The functional and non-functional requirements of a system are different. It includes data flow, classes as well as functional activities.
Tip #1: Remember the key areas of functional outcomes of a program.
Tip #2: Then think of what can happen next after the functional aspects are clear.
To be very specific about functional and non-functional requirements, functional requirement describes what the system should do and non-functional requirements describe how the system should work. For instance, performance, capability, scalability, security, etc are the non-functional features of a system. So non-functional requirement describes actually the quality characteristics or attributes of a system. Whereas, authentication, administrative functions, business rule, transaction details, etc are the functional features of a system. So the functional requirement describes actually the behaviour or function.
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5. Have You Ever Been Asked To Design A New System With Limited Resources? Walk Me Through It.
The questions aimed at your experiences are a great way to win the interviewer. Make sure that you always cite at least one example and do not forgo the question at any moment.
Tip #1: Go back to your college days when the resources were limited yet you had to design software.
Tip #2: Let it be organic. Do not exaggerate.
Yes, a year ago I was in a situation where resources were very limited. So I had to strategize. First of all, I assessed and diagnosed the team structure to have clear knowledge about the potential of the team. After the proper understanding of the team, I did a requirement analysis, business and process need, cost and quality analysis. Based on all the analysis decisions, I designed the system. After the system implementation, what followed was system evaluation to mitigate future system failure risk. Through this strategy, I achieved great success with limited resources.
6. How Do You Deal With Frequent Changes In User Requirements?
Your interviewer here is trying to assess your patience and ability to deal with troubling situations. Without further ado jump to the question rather than create a framework.
Tip #1: Keep it simple.
Tip #2: Do not complicate as the next question might come out of your answer.
Change management is imperative to bring success to any role. If I’ll ever deal with frequent changes in user requirements, I’ll analyze the situation, invest adequate time to track all changes done so far, and discuss with concerned personnel the reasons for new changes expected. I’ll also make sure that we have a clear vision and practical plan in place to accommodate all changes that are needed for the company’s growth.
7. What According To You Are The Skills Required To Become A Good Computer Analyst?
The interviewer wants to know if you are aware of the skills and inculcate them in your behavior.
Tip #1: Do not fluff skills at any point.
Tip #2: Do not cite your examples. Let the interviewer decide.
I believe that a good computer analyst should have an eye for intricate details as they would come across several troubleshoots in a given time. They should have the problem identifying and solving capacity along with a sound knowledge of software applications and networking.
8. Are You Aware Of The Requirements That A System Analyst Should Gather And Analyze?
Again, a technical question to assess your technical knowledge in the field.
Tip #1: Think of the projects you carried out and speak from your past experience.
Tip #2: Arrange your different answers systematically.
System analysts should gather and analyze basically two types of requirements.
- Functional Requirements: It provides the details of what the system is going to do. For example, business rules, administrative functions, authentications, transaction details, etc. The functional requirements tell about the behaviour or function of the system.
- Non-functional Requirements: It provides details about how the system should work. For example, performance, capability, scalability, security, etc. The non-functional requirements tell about the quality characteristics and the attributes of the systems.
9. Have You Ever Devised A Flowchart Or Diagram To Describe The Logical Operational Steps Of A Program?
Flowcharts and process flow diagrams aids to clearly convey the step-by-step instructions a system would follow. The interviewer is trying to understand how well you can convey your ideas via an effective visual representation.
Tip #1: Understand the motive behind the question asked.
Tip #2: Revise your flowcharts in the head.
Yes, sir, I believe that any operation requires a logical representation in the form of a flowchart. I do draw out a flowchart after deciding on a program. It helps me in assessing critical parameters that I have to ensure while devising the program.
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10. What Should A System Analyst Document?
Documentation is an integral part of a system analyst. Make sure that you answer this question to a perfect spot.
Tip #1: Do you know the importance of documentation? Great, include it in your answer.
Tip #2: Turn it relevant with the system analyst profile.
A system analyst should document what is going on in the system and what has not been built yet. It is often done with the participation of technical writers and system designers. It should include user scenarios, functional activities, data flows, classes, and interfaces between systems for comprehensive understanding.
11. How Would You Do A Software Registration?
As a system analyst manager, one should be well aware of the process of getting the software registered. The interviewer will try to understand whether you are familiar with the process or not.
Tip #1: The registration is done at the inventory. It should be your first step to answering the question.
Tip #2: Fabricate the latter processes by remembering different areas in the industry.
I would register the software by checking it with the inventory upon purchase and before installation. Then the software receiving department would complete the registration form and return it to the software publisher. Lastly, the software would be named after an organization and not an individual.
12. What Do You Think – How Often Systems Should Be Updated?
Updating your system is crucial in order to maintain and monitor it properly. The interviewer wants to know if you know the importance of update. The answer should be simple because exaggerating it might put you in trouble.
Tip #1: Start your answer by underlining the need to keep software updated regularly.
Tip #2: Be confident while answering the question.
Generally, a system update is required for the security issues, bug fixing, etc. It’s prudent to install updates to cater for these issues. Every program typically has some regular minor updates and major updates in every 1-3 years.
13. How Would You Explain A Complex Technical Problem To Non-Tech Stakeholders?
There are times when you have to interact with non-technical people and make them understand the complex concepts of technology. Here, the interviewer is trying to know whether you can tackle such stakeholders.
Tip #1: Your answer should reflect your efficiency in making complex technical concepts and problems sound simple.
Tip #2: Try demonstrating with an example.
Firstly, I will not assume that my audience, in this case the stakeholders, that they have any basic technical knowledge. I will keep a cheat sheet of technical terms handy to make things easily understandable for them. I’ll choose everyday examples to make my point and refer the context well to ensure the problem is comprehensible for them.
14. What Would Be The First Action If The Production Is Down?
Situational questions are put up to detect your attitude towards dealing with the issue.
Tip #1: Make it more relevant by examples.
Tip #2: You can also include your theoretical knowledge.
First of all, I will identify the root cause of the issue, whether it is a database issue, application issue, or infrastructure issue. Production down can be a result of a failure in a process or system management. Hence, I will first check the database and reports to address the problem and analyze the error logs. After that I will take the necessary measures to bring everything back to order.
15. How Would You Evaluate And Examine Our Existing Systems To Suggest The Scope Of Improvement?
Here, the interviewer wants to know how you can be an addition to the quality team. They will also test how detail-oriented you are.
Tip #1: Make sure to emphasize more on the company than you.
Tip #2: Define the scope of improvement clearly.
As a system analyst, it will be my key responsibility to evaluate and examine the existing systems and try to give suggestions on the scope of improvement. So, first of all, I would like to engage the user and get try to get their feedback about it. Then I would like to analyze the whole thing and suggest what process can be improved or shortened or what new features can be proposed to the user.
16. How Do You Plan And Prioritize Your Work?
The interviewer here is trying to assess your planning and work management skills.
Tip #1: Focus on how you can be a valuable addition to the organization.
I have a habit of organizing my tasks on a to-do list. I prioritize my work according to an urgent and important basis. I carry out first those tasks which ask for my instant attention by managing time. I’ll also be flexible to accommodate any priority task without affecting my whole schedule.
17. Suggest An Effective Method To Monitor And Maintain Computer Systems.
System performance matters. The interviewer here is trying to know what you can do to enhance existing computer systems.
Tip #1: Focus on how you can improve a computer system. The answer will come to you immediately.
Tip #2: Device a method out of the answer.
I believe that computer systems are monitored and maintained by following stringent rules. First of all, the database should be monitored weekly to work upon the flaws in the system. Secondly, the flaws should be addressed promptly. Proper training of individuals in doing the same can help in maintaining the computer system in the longer run.
18. Have You Modified A System To Enhance Its Workflow? Share Your Experience.
If you are an experienced system analyst, the interviewer would want to know your ability to improve workflow with ease.
Tip #1: Give relevant examples from your recent experience.
Tip #2: Do not fluff and exaggerate.
I have worked on different software systems in my past role. I came across a situation where I had to make a couple of modifications to enhance workflow. So, first of all, I analyzed the hardware as well as the software of the system. Secondly, I reduced the unwanted tasks to improve the workflow process. Finally, made a report and evaluated the system for improved performance.
19. What Is Client-Server Architecture?
The interviewer here is checking your technical know-how.
Tip #1: Do not fluff on technical questions.
Tip #2: Answer it confidently and give the crispest definition to create an impact.
Client-server architecture is a model in computers in which the server hosts, delivers, and manages resources and services for the clients. It’s a distributed system that offers a better way to share the workload and centrally control the security & backup.
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20. How Would You Handle High-Severity Issues And Escalations?
Issues can arrive at any moment, and when left unattended, it can escalate and demand urgent attention. The interviewer here is trying to check your approach to handle such challenging issues.
Tip #1: Such questions can sometimes be tricky. Hence, be smart.
Tip #2: Don’t get too personal.
I believe that pressure is any day good for me to outperform myself.
In case of an escalation, like when a mission-critical application gets crashed, I’ll make sure to dedicatedly assess the problem and find a solution to defuse it. If need be, I’ll check with management and concerned peers to get the issue resolved faster.
With these questions and answers, you will be able to get the right person to be your next manager as a System Analyst for your organization. Take time and ask the right questions and see if the answers are correct. Your next manager for the role of System Analyst is waiting so start the hiring process and ask the right questions now.