December 2014

Happy Holidays from Watermark Learning!

Sharing with others is the best way we know how to show our appreciation to you, our loyal customers and associates. As we have in the past 21 years, Watermark will contribute to local, national, and international charities.

This year, in honor of #GivingDecember, we asked our social media followers to weigh in on which charities to contribute to in 2014.  The votes were tallied and the vote was tied, so we donated to both charities:

In addition, as we do every year, we asked the Watermark Learning team to recommend charities they would like to support. Based on our staff's choices, we also donated to:

We invite you to consider supporting these or other organizations in need.

Happy Holidays from all of us at Watermark Learning!

October 2014

Watermark Learning Staff Earn PMI-PBA Credential

5 Watermark Learning staff and instructors became some of the first in the world to receive the PMI-PBA credential.  

Congratulations Rich Larson, Elizabeth Larson, Vicki James, Dayle Beyer, and Stevie Peterson!  

Watermark Learning Adds CSM and CSPO Training

In October, we expanded our Agile certification prep class offerings to include a Certified Scrum Master (CSM) course and a Certified Scrum Product Owener (CSPO) course. Read more about CSM/CSPO Certification.

September 2014

Watermark Learning Launches PMI-PBASM Resources and Training

Watermark Learning launched its first PMI-PBA Certification Preparation class and PMI-PBA Online Study Exam, featuring over 750 practice questions modeled after the real exam!  We also added a PMI-PBA Application Worksheet, available as a free download for our members.

Watermark Learning Names Brian Maas As Director of Client Solutions


Brian’s responsibilities include developing business plans and setting sales strategy. He also works directly with our clients to help them grow their businesses through the use of Watermark's training and development products and services.

Whether you or your organization need on-site Agile training and coaching, CBAP exam preparation, or requirements management training, Brian is exceptionally qualified to find a solution that meets your unique needs.

May 2014

Watermark Learning Announces PMI-PBASM Resources and Training

PMI-PBA Certification Webinar

Get your PMI-PBA certification with the help of Watermark
Learning! Watermark Learning Principals, Elizabeth and Richard
Larson, are part of the select team writing the practice guide for the
new PMI-PBA. Read more about the PMI BA Practice Guide.

For more information, see our PMI-PBA informational page which
outlines practical steps to getting your PMI-PBA certification, or
listen to our pre-recorded webinar.

March 2014

Watermark Learning Expands Agile Curriculum, adds Certificate Programs

Agile Training

Watermark learning has expanded our Agile Training Curriculum, with
three new courses including Agile PMI-ACP Preparation. Our Agile
Project Management
and Agile Business Analysis courses are practical
and engaging, which enables you to immediately apply the concepts and
skills back on the job,” said Elizabeth Larson. 

As with all Watermark Learning courses, our Agile Project Management
and Agile Business Analysis training courses translate complex industry
standards into practical application.

February 2014

Watermark Learning Celebrates 50,000th Student

Ericka Fisher

Watermark Learning has reached an important milestone, having provided training
to over 50,000 business analysts, project managers, and others since its inception.
We celebrated during a February class to present one lucky student with a special
prize honoring the occasion.

Congratulations to Ericka Fisher of Chevron Corporation, who is Watermark
Learning's 50,000th Student! Ericka participated in the Minneapolis CBAP/CCBA
Preparation Class held Feb. 3-5, 2014. At a celebration held in her honor during
class, she was awarded a certificate for a new Microsoft® Surface tablet by
Watermark Learning Principals Elizabeth Larson, PMP, CBAP, CSM and
Richard Larson, PMP, CBAP.

January 2014

Watermark Learning Names Vicki James, PMP, CBAP As Director of Business Analysis

Vicki James

Watermark Learning has named Vicki James, PMP, CBAP, to the position of Director of Business Analysis. James joins Watermark Learning with 15 years’ experience in the public and private sectors as a project manager, business analyst, author, and independent industry consultant and trainer.

Her responsibilities will include developing and maintaining Watermark Learning’s Business Analysis Training programs and serving as an instructor for both live in-person and virtual online classes. James will continue to work from her office in Seattle, Washington.
Read more about this exciting change
.

Watermark Instructor Stevie Peterson Earns PMI-ACP Designation

Stevie Peterson Watermark Senior Instructor Stevie Peterson, PMP, CBAP, recently added PMI-ACP® to her signature after passing her PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)® certification exam, making her one of approximately 4,400 PMI-ACP® certified agile professionals in the world. "Stevie has a breadth of experience across so many different types of organizations and with so many different types of projects, including agile, that it only makes sense that she’s added this certification to her list of formally acknowledged credentials,” said Andrea Brockmeier, PMP, Watermark's Director of Training Services.

“As we move ahead with the development of our agile curriculum in the first part of this year, she will be invaluable, both as a subject matter expert and instructor. The benefit of Stevie’s background is that her experience resonates really well in the classroom with both BAs and PMs, and now she’ll be able to lend perspective to how those skills translate in an agile environment,” Brockmeier explained. “And, of course, our PMI-ACP Certification Prep course is something we’re excited for her to be involved in .”

December 2013

Happy Holidays from Watermark Learning!

Sharing with others is the best way we know how to show our appreciation to you, our loyal customers and associates. As we have in the past 20 years, in lieu of holiday gifts, Watermark will contribute to local, national, and international charities. As an additional way of giving back, we also volunteer for organizations like PMI® and IIBA®. This year, we are proud to make contributions to:

  • Cure Alzheimer’s Fund
  • Glaucoma Research Foundation
  • Humane Society International
  • International Center for Research on Women
  • Mercy Corps
  • Open Arms International Program

We invite you to learn more about these organizations and to consider supporting these or other organizations in need. And of all the gifts we might wish you during this holiday season, one stands out as most important - peace to you and your loved ones, and peace to all!

Happy Holidays from all of us at Watermark Learning!

Online Study Exam Use Expands To 71 Countries

Subscriber Map

Watermark Learning’s CBAP/CCBA Online Study Exam is now used by more than 2500 people from 71 countries, with new CBAP and CCBA exam candidates from four additional countries. The latest additions include candidates from the Czech Republic, Senegal, Sweden, and Zambia. Click here to see a map of subscriber locations.

Learn more.

November 2013

First Germany-Austria Business Analysis Summit a Huge Success

Featuring a high-caliber roster of experienced presenters, the first ever Germany-Austria Business Analysis Summit exceeded all expectations. The Summit was held in Salzburg on October 11, 2013 and is the first German-language session for the business analysis profession held in Europe.

Summit sponsors included both Watermark Learning and its German partner, masVenta. Among the presenters were Watermark Learning principals Elizabeth Larson, CBAP, PMP, CSM, and Richard Larson, CBAP, PMP, while Rainer Wendt, CBAP, PMP, Managing Director of masVenta, co-chaired the event.

keynote group

Elizabeth Larson delivered the opening keynote, presenting The Influencing Formula: Three Steps to Influencing when you don’t have the Authority to a standing-room only crowd. Richard Larson led off an afternoon track session with Fantastic Voyage or Impossible Dream: The BA as Management Consultant.

The Summit was organized by the Austrian Chapter and the German Chapter of the International Institute of Business Analysis® (IIBA®). Rainer Wendt, who currently serves as Vice President of the German Chapter, presented opening remarks at the Summit, along with Peter Gerstbach, representing the Austrian Chapter of the IIBA.

Visit the Summit website for more information and access to downloads of the presentations.

October 2013

New Exam Results Summary Added to Watermark Learning Online Study Exams

The best online study exam for CBAP,CCBA, and PMP just got better! Based on subscriber feedback, we have added another significant feature to help certification candidates focus their study time and be better prepared to take their exam.

The previous release of our online study exams gave subscribers access to their past exam result history. This has been helpful for people to track their progress one exam at a time and for feedback on which areas are most in need of improvement.

Now we provide another new feature - a convenient and valuable results summary that displays a table of all exams, in reverse order, showing:

  • Percentage correct on each exam’s knowledge area for each practice exam
  • Aggregate score for each exam by averaging the knowledge areas
  • Overall average for all exams taken. We advise candidates to achieve an 80% or higher average to be prepared, and our results summary gives subscribers a quick way to view their overall score.
  • Ability to scroll through past exams at a glance, and view the results screen for any past exam.

These newest changes will provide even more feedback on progress and readiness for taking the actual exam. An example of the new results summary is shown below. Just click on the image to enlarge it.

Results Summary

August 2013

Watermark Learning Partner Vellicate Technologies Participates in BA Convention in Bangalore, India

Surendra Saxena, Managing Partner of Vellicate Technologies, Watermark Learning's training partner in India, submitted this report on the 2013 BA Convention. The BA Convention in Bangalore, India concluded last week and it was very well received. This was an exclusive conference to bring together experts from the industry, academia and other national bodies, harmonize the perception of Business Analysis, and discuss current related issues.

BA Convention Talk Vellicate Table

This event spread over two days, attracted over 90 companies and more than 850 participants. It proved to be a great networking venue while simultaneously educating people from different spheres of the challenges, situations and circumstances faced by BAs.

My talk on "BA as Trusted Business Advisor" was received with great enthusiasm. About 450 people attended it, even though there was a workshop by Accenture running in parallel. The talk was voted as one of the best sessions by the participants.

The talk was successful due to Watermark Learning’s wonderful work in developing the SARIE consulting process, defining the forms of power and the four quadrants from order-takers to trusted advisor. People kept mentioning these slides throughout the rest of the day. At the end of the workshop, one person literally pleaded for a copy of "The Influencing Formula" book.

Watermark Learning and RBN Consulting Announce Partnership to Offer Training Programs in Brazil

RBN Logo Watermark Learning is pleased to announce a partnership with RBN, one of Brazil’s largest business consulting and training firms, to offer Watermark Learning courses in Brazil.

“Watermark Learning is pleased to partner with RBN to offer our business analysis and project management training programs in Brazil” said Richard Larson, PMP, CBAP, President of Watermark Learning. “Our shared philosophy and focus on training and development leadership make this collaboration an excellent fit.”

“Some years ago when I discovered the IIBA and Business Analysis, I saw it as the missing piece for my consulting work on Project Management,” said Rodrigo Neves, PMP, MSc, RBN Managing Director. “So when I decided to educate myself on Business Analysis, I searched for the best courses that I could find worldwide, and Watermark Learning emerged as the obvious answer.

“Now RBN is a proud Watermark training partner. We can offer in Brazil its courses in Project Management, Business Analysis, Business Process Management and Influencing Skills, all of which my consulting team and I use to increase our own business knowledge. Through this partnership, RBN becomes an important ally for those who seek to improve their knowledge, optimize their work and pursue PMI or IIBA certification.”

About RBN Consulting
Founded in 2001, RBN Consulting and Training has solid experience in consulting and training, with branch offices in Sao Paulo and Porto Alegre, Brazil. We are a company specializing in the development of business solutions to improve human relations at work and, consequently, the results of the business. For this we use the most advanced tools and management techniques, such as Project Management, Business Analysis, and Business Process Management. For more information, contact RBN at comercial@rbnconsultoria.com.br or visit http://www.rbnconsultoria.com.br/

April 2013

Bob Prentiss Presentation Breaks Attendance Records for Central Iowa IIBA Meeting

Bob Prentiss

A presentation by Bob Prentiss, Watermark Learning's Director of Client Solutions - Business Analysis, recently broke all attendance records for the Central Iowa Chapter of the IIBA. The meeting, held March 28 at John Deere Financial in suburban Des Moines, drew over 150 registrants, beating out previous meeting registrations by 20%!

Bob's presentation, "Requirements Held Hostage - Elicitation in Crisis" presented the parallels between hostage negotiations and requirements elicitation in the life of a typical BA. "Bob absolutely crushed this presentation," said Andrew Walling, the Chapter's Director of Programs. "The facility where the meeting was held is somewhat remote, and the record attendance demonstrates the drawing power of Bob's topic," he added.

Bob's interactive presentation allowed the audience to make choices based on events presented in video clips. Bob then presented the outcome of each situation based on the audience's choices.

Attendees had many positive comments on the program. Here are just a few:

"Love the parallels between hostage negotiation and requirement elicitation. Very good things to think about and tips for practice -- this was engaging and fun!"

"This technique can be applied to my job. Thank-you for providing this presentation to us!"

"Reminders about building relationships and what to consider."

"Entertaining and informative. Great way to look at eliciting requirements."

February 2013

Helpful Books and Publications from Watermark Learning

Did you know that Watermark Learning offers several books to help in your prep efforts? Our Practitioner's Guide to - Part 1: Requirements Planning, has even been selected by a major university as required reading for a . Here is an overview of these publications. Click on the links to learn more about each book and how to order each.

The Influencing Formula: How to Become a Trusted Advisor and Influence Without Authority
This new book by Elizabeth Larson and Richard Larson covers every aspect of developing the skills to influence to enhance your ability to effectively manage projects by establishing yourself as a trusted advisor. The unique project-focused book, packed with countless practical tips, techniques, and examples of how to influence without authority, is receiving positive reviews. Learn more.


The Influencing Formula

CBAP Certification Study Guide
This comprehensive study guide highlights all the important points of the CBAP® 2.0 exam. Readily master all knowledge areas of the BABOK® Guide and focus your study time. Our guide comes with a free trial of our Exam, with hundreds of practice questions and answer explanations. The only study guide you will need to help you pass the CBAP exam. Great for the CCBA®, too! Learn more.


CBAP Guide

Practitioners Guide to Requirements Management, Part 1: Requirements Planning
If you are a business analyst or project manager involved in business analysis, you understand how important it is to plan your work. Aligned with both the BABOK Guide and the PMBOK® Guide, this practical guide leads you through the maze of requirements planning. This step-by-step guide has been selected by a major university as required reading for a BA course. Learn more.

Requirements Management

A Brockmeier

Andrea Brockmeier Named Director of Training Services for Watermark Learning

Andrea Brockmeier, PMP, has been named to the position of Director of Training Services for Watermark Learning. Andrea's new responsibilities include managing all Watermark Learning instructors and class production, in addition to continuing to teach classes and developing and maintaining courseware.

Andrea Brockmeier, PMP, has been named to the position of Director of Training Services for Watermark Learning. Andrea's new responsibilities include managing all Watermark Learning instructors and class production, in addition to continuing to teach classes and developing and maintaining courseware.

"We are excited to have Andrea take on these new responsibilities," said Chris Anderson, Watermark Learning's Vice President of Sales and Delivery. "She will be instrumental in managing our courseware development, internal and contract instructors, and process improvement and communication for our educational programs as Watermark Learning continues to expand."

Andrea has been Client Solutions Director - Project Management for Watermark Learning since 2009. Since joining the company in 2001, she played a key role in leading and strengthening Watermark's Project Management curriculum, including its Professional (PMP®) program. Her background includes over 20 years of project management experience in non-profit and for-profit organizations, as well as experience in developing and leading technical project teams.

An active member of the Minnesota Chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMI®), Andrea is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and a Certified Scrum Master (CSM). She has also published articles on the topics of Project Management and Virtual Teams.

Andrea holds a Master of Arts degree from Southern Methodist University and a Bachelor of Arts Degree from North Dakota State University.

SEAN Conducts First Watermark Learning Courses in Mexico City

The first workshop for CBAP® and CCBA® Certification to be held in Mexico City was conducted by SEAN (Servicios Educacionales en Analisis de Negocios), the foremost Business Analysis training provider in Mexico, in December. SEAN partnered with Watermark Learning, a leading worldwide provider of Business Analysis, Project Management, and Business Process Management training, to offer the workshop.

"The objective of the workshop is to prepare students to take the exam for the Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) or Certificate of Competency in Business Analysis (CCBA) designations and help them make the most of the limited study time they have,"said Gabriel Almeida, Vice President, Educational and Professional Services of SEAN.

"It is current with the framework of knowledge outlined by the Business Analysis Body of Knowledge (BABOK®) version 2.0,"Almeida added. "Students learn test-taking tips and strategies, along with practice questions and exercises to reinforce the material."

"Going forward, the CBAP/CCBA Workshop will be available as both a virtual course and as an instructor-led course in Mexico City," said Richard Larson, CBAP, PMP, President of Watermark Learning. "The workshop is designed for experienced business analysts who qualify to sit for the CBAP or CCBA exam, and who wish to successfully pass the exam on their first attempt,"Larson added.

The CBAP/CCBA workshop is the first in a series of Watermark Learning Business Analysis courses to be offered by SEAN. The additional courses will be added as interest in Business Analysis education continues to grow in Mexico.

About SEAN
SEAN is a 100% Mexican company dedicated to the development of content for training courses in business analysis topics. It is made up of national professionals in this area of competency and supported by experts of international stature. SEAN has strategic partners which allow it to keep up to date on the latest topics in business analysis that are submitted for consideration for course agendas. For more information, visit www.seanmexico.com.

January 2013

Watermark Learning Partners with Leading German Training Firm
masVenta to Provide Business Analysis Courses

Watermark Learning is pleased to announce a partnership with masVenta Business GmbH, a leading German-based training, consulting, and software services organization, to offer Watermark Learning Business Analysis and CBAP® certification study courses in Germany.

The Business Analysis courses offered through this new partnership are designed to help business analysts develop the valuable skills needed to analyze competing business needs and solve underlying business problems. The program also offers exam preparation courses for both the CCBA® (Certification of Competency in Business Analysis) and CBAP (Certified Business Analysis Professional) designations offered by the IIBA (International Institute of Business Analysis).

"Watermark Learning is delighted to partner with masVenta to offer the first public CBAP course in Germany" said Richard Larson, CBAP, PMP, President of Watermark Learning. "The course is designed to increase CBAP candidates' confidence and improve their chances of passing the CBAP certification exam," he added.

"Our partnership with Watermark Learning provides us with best-of-breed learning materials for Business Analysis with which we effectively prepare candidates for their CBAP exams," said Rainer Wendt, CBAP, PMP, Managing Director of masVenta. "By including Watermark's excellent CBAP Study Guide and the flexible Online Exam Simulator in our courses, we make sure that our students pass the exam on the first try." Wendt added.

Among the first courses to be offered by masVenta in the Business Analysis curriculum is Facilitation Skills for Project Managers and Business Analysts. "This course empowers participants with the skills needed to effectively manage people dynamics, build teams, resolve conflict, and identify and solve problems," said Elizabeth Larson, CBAP, PMP, CSM, and CEO of Watermark Learning. "It is an excellent example of how this partnership will provide attendees with the hands-on training and skills practice needed to be an effective and confident business analyst." masVenta regularly offers various Watermark Learning courses in both German and English language in major European cities; the very first CBAP Preparation course in Germany will take place end of January in Dusseldorf.

About masVenta

Founded in 2007, masVenta aims to offer best services in areas of business analysis and project management. This is achieved by providing coaching, training, and the initialization of highly-qualified staff. The masVenta Corporate Philosophy is to professionally support companies during the process of ongoing improvement by providing business analysis and project management to close the gap between strategy and solution. The name masVenta originated with a CRM project and is Spanish for "more sales" (mas venta). For more information, visit www.masventa.eu.

December 2012

Happy Holidays and Thank You from Watermark Learning

Looking back over 20 successful years of serving the industry, we realize that we couldn't have done it without our past, present, (and future) clients and students. We have much to be thankful for and we are grateful to all those we have trained, mentored, and helped obtain their certification.

Sharing with others is the best way we know of to show our appreciation to you, our loyal customers and associates. As a way of giving back, we volunteer for organizations like PMI® and IIBA® and groups like the Alzheimer's Association, the MS Society, and Cancer Society. Watermark Learning also contributes 5% of its net profits to charities and non-profit organizations. Here is a list of the organizations our staff are most connected to and thought were most in need this year. We invite you to learn more about these organizations and to consider supporting these or other organizations in need.

  • Alzheimer's Association: Empowers and equips people affected by Alzheimer's disease and related disorders with expert information and resources.
  • American Cancer Society: The leading organization for research into cancer prevention and treatment.
  • Feeding America Food Network: The largest charitable hunger-relief organization in the United States.
  • Humane Society International: Working to protect animals in countries all over the world to provide direct, hands-on care to animals in need and spread the culture of compassion.
  • International Center for Research on Women: Works to make women in developing countries an integral part of alleviating global poverty. Identifies women’s contributions as well as the obstacles that prevent them from being economically strong and able to fully participate in society. ICRW translates these insights into a path of action that honors women’s human rights, ensures gender equality and creates the conditions in which all women can thrive.
  • Mercy Corps: Assists people in the world's toughest places to turn the crises of natural disaster, poverty, and conflict into opportunities for progress.
  • Open Arms International Program: Open Arms partners with non-profit organizations in sub-Saharan Africa to provide nutrition and technical assistance to people infected and affected by HIV/AIDS, from daily hot lunches to community gardens and food parcels to clean water projects, to help bring hope to communities in South Africa, Namibia and Ethiopia.
  • Salvation Army Heatshare Program: Provides emergency assistance with heating and utility bills on a year-round basis.

Happy Holidays from our family to yours!

July 2012

Watermark Learning Announces Partnership with Equinox IT to Offer Training Programs in New Zealand

Watermark Learning is pleased to announce a partnership with Equinox IT, one of New Zealand’s largest IT consulting, development, and training firms, to offer Watermark Learning courses in New Zealand. The partnership was launched in Wellington, New Zealand, on June 11 and 12 with presentations by Elizabeth Larson and Rich Larson to Business Analyst meetings sponsored by Equinox IT. Elizabeth presented on Seven Trends in Business Analysis and Richard’s topic was Fantastic Voyage or the Impossible Dream? The BA as Management Consultant.

:We are pleased to partner with Equinox IT to offer this training,"said Elizabeth. "Our shared philosophy and focus on training leadership make this collaboration an excellent fit."

"The partnership with Watermark Learning will further our goal of working with partners from around the world to bring the best value to the software development and IT community," added Roger Dalgleish, Managing Director of Equinox IT. "This partnership contributes to our vision of the best people doing the best work to make a positive and significant difference for our customers."

About Equinox IT

Providing expert, independent IT consulting, development, and training since 1995, Equinox IT is a New Zealand-owned IT business with offices in Wellington and Auckland. With over 60 employees and a selection of key partner and associate relationships, Equinox provides a full set of services "in and around" the software development lifecycle. For more information, visit www.equinox.co.nz.

June 2012

Watermark Inaugurates Indian Partnership with BA World Presentations

Elizabeth Rich and Surendra BA World

Watermark Learning recently announced a partnership with Vellicate Technologies to begin offering Watermark courses in India. In conjunction with this partnership, Rich and Elizabeth Larson met with Surendra Saxena, Managing Director of Vellicate Technologies, while in India to present at Business Analysis World 2012. Sessions for BA World were held in two Indian locations, first in Pune May 21 – 22, and then in Bangalore May 24 – 25.

"Vellicate Technologies will be a fantastic partner for us in India," Rich Larson said. "Surendra Saxena was our host while we attended BA World, and was instrumental in making the trip a success." Both Rich and Elizabeth were presenters at the BA World sessions in Pune and Bangalore. Rich gave his talk on "Bulletproof Business Cases," while Elizabeth presented on "The Influencing Formula."

"This partnership reflects an increased demand for a higher level of skills in all areas," Surendra Saxena said. "We are excited to partner with Watermark Learning to help organizations develop skills and expertise needed to be successful."

There were enthusiastic attendees for each session in both cities. "Common issues raised by participants included projects getting launched by solution without a business case, lack of cost-benefit analysis, business leaders responding to the wrong stakeholders, launching projects with inappropriate features, and projects being scrapped because they lacked business value," Rich said. "It is obvious that the profession of Business Analysis is thriving in India," he added.

About Vellicate Technologies

Vellicate Technologies Private Limited is a Training, Consulting, and Software Services Organization providing cost effective, innovative, and high-quality solutions to their customers with a passion for excellence. They provide training and consulting to help their clients develop the necessary skills and processes to improve business and employee performance. Vellicate is an IIBA® Endorsed Education Provider (EEP) and their key focus areas are business analysis, project and program management, business process management (BPM), leadership development, and power engineering. For more information, visit www.vellicate-tech.com.

March 2012

Watermark Leaps into its 21st Year

The date has finally passed. March 2 marks the 20th Anniversary of Watermark Learning’s founding. Like 1992, 2012 is also a leap year, and with the passing of the anniversary date, we take the leap into our 21st year.

Watermark Learning began as Watermark Technical Services, a one-person operation offering a handful of IT training courses, and is now, literally, an international institution. We offer our college-accredited training in business analysis, project management, and business process management not only as in-person courses, but also as live, virtual classes attended by people all over the world. We also license our course materials to companies in South Africa, India, and Mexico.

The significant events of Watermark’s first 20 years are highlighted in our 20th Anniversary Timeline. View the Timeline.

Read more about 1992 happenings.

January 2012

Watermark Learning to Launch Training Programs in Mexico

Watermark Learning is pleased to announce that it will launch courses in Business Analysis in Mexico beginning in 2012. The courses are being offered in conjunction with SEAN (Servicios Educacionales en Analisis de Negocios), the foremost Business Analysis training provider in Mexico.

The first course to be offered will be a workshop for those preparing for the Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP®) or Certificate of Competency in Business Analysis (CCBA®) designations. The CBAP/CCBA® Workshop will be available as both a virtual course and as an instructor-led course in Mexico City.

"Watermark Learning is pleased to partner with SEAN to offer this training in Mexico" said Richard Larson, CBAP, PMP, President of Watermark Learning. "The CBAP/CCBA® prep course is designed for experienced business analysts who qualify to sit for the CBAP® or CCBA® exam, and who wish to successfully pass the exam on their first attempt," he added.

"As interest in CBAP/CCBA® certification has grown, so too has the availability of both online and instructor-led courses. We are proud to be affiliated with market leader Watermark Learning in offering this course in Mexico," said Gabriel Almeida, Vice president, Educational and Professional Services of SEAN.

CBAP/CCBA® is a registered certification mark of International Institute of Business Analysis

December 2011

Watermark Learning to Offer College Credit through Concordia University, St. Paul

Watermark Learning has signed an agreement with Concordia University, St. Paul for Watermark students to earn college credit for Watermark Learning Courses in Project Management, Business Analysis, and Business Process Management.

"We at Watermark are very excited about the new collaboration with Concordia University. This option will help fill the void for some of our clients for whom it is difficult to attend and pay for training that isn’t tied directly toward a degree, either at the Bachelor’s or Master’s level," said Chris Anderson, Vice President of Sales and Delivery at Watermark Learning.

"We are pleased we can enrich the academic experience of Concordia students through the addition of targeted, relevant training on topics of high value to employers and students alike," said Dr. Eric LaMott, Concordia senior vice president and chief operating officer. "Watermark’s up-to-the-minute expertise aligns well with Concordia’s practitioner-focused degree programs. We appreciate the mutual benefit to both Concordia and Watermark students."

The collaboration will apply to all Watermark Learning open-enrollment classes currently offered in Minneapolis, MN, Chicago, IL, Phoenix, AZ, and Toronto, as well as additional cities to be added in the future. All internet-based virtual training courses are included and offer access to Concordia credits to students around the world.

As part of the agreement, Watermark will promote the collaborative courses and training to its clients and Concordia will promote the courses and training to its undergraduate, graduate and certificate students.

Watermark Learning will provide credentialed instructors for each class, and will provide Concordia with information on student attendance, assignments, and other accreditation information on which grades will be based. Watermark will also provide students with course materials and the courseware requirements necessary to receive college credit.

Concordia will register all "for credit" students, process their payments, answer student inquiries, and share registration information with Watermark. These students will have access to all Concordia resources, including the university’s library. Watermark Learning students who are not Concordia students will be enrolled as visiting students and receive a Concordia student identification number.

Concordia will also provide all "for credit" students with grades and transcripts upon request, and provide classroom space for courses held at Concordia as requested by Watermark.

Learn more about Concordia University

Happy Holidays from Watermark Learning

Reflecting back on the 19 years that Watermark Learning has served the industry, we have much to be thankful for. We have benefited from and are grateful to the past, present, (and future) clients and students we have trained and mentored. As a way of giving back to the community, we volunteer for organizations like PMI® and IIBA® and groups like the Alzheimer's Association, the MS Society, and Cancer Society.

Like you, our time is limited, so we also donate financially to worthy causes. There are an endless number to choose from, so we polled our staff again to create this year's list. We all feel strongly about the world around us and giving to others in need.

Here is a list of the organizations our staff are most connected to and thought were most in need this year. We invite you to consider supporting these or other organizations in need. We donate over 5% of our pre-tax earnings in dollars and time each year to charitable and industry causes.

Happy holidays from our family to yours!

  • Alzheimer's Association: Empowers and equips people affected by Alzheimer's disease and related disorders with expert information and resources.
  • American Cancer Society: The leading organization for research into cancer prevention and treatment.
  • Feeding America Food Network: The largest charitable hunger-relief organization in the United States.
  • Humane Society International: Working to protect animals in countries all over the world to provide direct, hands-on care to animals in need and spread the culture of compassion.
  • International Center for Research on Women: Works to make women in developing countries an integral part of alleviating global poverty. Identifies women’s contributions as well as the obstacles that prevent them from being economically strong and able to fully participate in society. ICRW translates these insights into a path of action that honors women’s human rights, ensures gender equality and creates the conditions in which all women can thrive.
  • Mercy Corps: Assists people in the world's toughest places to turn the crises of natural disaster, poverty, and conflict into opportunities for progress.
  • Open Arms International Program: Open Arms partners with non-profit organizations in sub-Saharan Africa to provide nutrition and technical assistance to people infected and affected by HIV/AIDS, from daily hot lunches to community gardens and food parcels to clean water projects, to help bring hope to communities in South Africa, Namibia and Ethiopia.
  • Salvation Army Heatshare Program: Provides emergency assistance with heating and utility bills on a year-round basis.


November 2011

Project R.E.A.L. Receives 2011 PMI Continuing Professional Education Product of the Year Award

Watermark Learning’s Project R.E.A.L. training has been honored by the Project Management Institute (PMI®) as the recipient of its Product of the Year Award in the Continuing Professional Education Category. Project R.E.A.L. (Real Experience; Applied Learning) was selected for the award from numerous submissions received from around the world. The award was presented during PMI’s annual Awards Ceremony on Saturday, October 22 at the Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center.

"We are proud to be the recipient of this prestigious award," said Elizabeth Larson, CEO of Watermark Learning. "Project R.E.A.L. teaches students how to lead and make the tough decisions in moments of difficulty. The course shares real life success stories and failures that help guide students through both the Project R.E.A.L. course and their real-world jobs," she added.

The Project R.E.A.L. live training exemplifies exceptional professional development instruction for project practitioners. Project R.E.A.L. was designed for both Project Management and Business Analysis professionals. This advanced course expands on students’ previous learning and job experience in a robust, dynamic, and fast-paced environment using a hands-on, live project simulation.

Project R.E.A.L. is guided by an experienced facilitator with extensive background in Project Management and Business Analysis. Students are immersed in more than just a simulation, and allowed to expand on previous learning and job experience where they are prepared to handle obstacles that may impede project success.

Participants experience the pitfalls, roadblocks, curveballs, successes, and celebrations that happen on every project as part of a working team in a live, interactive, and safe environment. Structured flexibility is built into the course utilizing an outline combined with guidance from the facilitator and the overall approach of the project chosen by the students.

Learn more about the 2011 Awards.
See a video of the awards ceremony.

Watermark Learning Receives DEED Recertification from State of Minnesota

Watermark Learning has been recertified by the Department of Education and Economic Development (DEED) of the State of Minnesota to be licensed as a Private Career School. Licensure is required by private schools and training firms that offer non-degreed career training programs in Minnesota.

State licensing requires a school to meet strict standards for certificates or diplomas, student records, finances, and faculty. Licensed schools must also provide accurate and useful information about school programs and courses, tuition and fees, admissions, evaluation, dismissal and refunds.

"We strive to not only meet but to exceed state standards for licensure," said Chris Anderson, Watermark Learning’s Vice President of Sales and Delivery. "We are proud to once again meet these requirements, and plan to continuously improve our course offerings and support programs to meet licensing standards in the future."

Watermark Learning’s programs are categorized under Project Management Training and Business Analysis Fundamentals by the state, and as being offered both as public and online courses. The 2011 recertification marks the fourth consecutive year that Watermark has received a Private Career School license from DEED.

Auburn University Representative Visits Watermark Learning

Wanda Lambert, Administrator of Outreach Programs for Continuing Education at Auburn University, visited Watermark Learning last month to review and recertify Watermark programs.

While in Minneapolis, Lambert audited courses and met with Watermark’s management team. "In addition to the audit, we discussed new programs that our two organizations will jointly participate in," said Chris Anderson, Watermark’s Vice President of Sales and Delivery. "These will include additional distance learning options for project management and business analysis training," he added.

"We plan to continue our successful partnership with Auburn University to grant our students Continuing Education Units (CEUs) for our classes," said Elizabeth Larson, CEO of Watermark Learning. "Watch for details of our new partnership programs very soon."

October 2011

Watermark Learning Is Now a Premier Sponsor of IIBA

We’re pleased to announce that Watermark Learning is now a Premier Sponsor of the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA®), the professional association for Business Analysis practitioners.

As a Premier Sponsor, we are now one of a select group of companies who directly support the IIBA in its mission of developing and maintaining standards for the practice of business analysis and the certification of business analysis professionals.

"We believe strongly in the importance of the IIBA and what it can do for the Business Analysis community," said Richard Larson, Watermark Learning President. "As part of the Premier Sponsorship Program, Watermark Learning will participate with the IIBA in various events and programs in the coming year," he added.

Included in the Premier Sponsorship program are two webinars where sponsors can present topics relevant to the Business Analysis community. Sponsors are also recognized at other events and on the IIBA website as leading supporters of the IIBA and its programs.

We continue to be a leading provider of training programs and skill development services for Business Analysts worldwide. All Watermark Learning training supports the IIBA Business Analysis Body of Knowledge (BABOK®) Version 2.0. Watermark Learning also offers Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP®) and Certification of Competency in Business Analysis (CCBA™) study programs through its public open-enrollment classes, virtual classes, private on-site training courses, mentoring, certification preparation products, and other related resources.

Find out more about the IIBA

Watermark Delivers Recently Updated PMP® Certification Preparation Course Materials and Online Simulation Exam

Watermark Learning recently delivered its new PMP® Certification Preparation course which has been updated to reflect the exam changes that went into effect August 31. Watermark PMP® Prep students receiving the new materials for the live instructor-led course, delivered in classrooms and online, will find the study tools, exercises, and in-class practice tests to be critical to their certification success. A free 90-day subscription to the updated Watermark PMP® Online Simulation Exam, which includes over 500 questions, is also included with the course.

September 2011

More Virtual Classes Announced

We are pleased to unveil four more classes that are available in a virtual environment over the Internet. Classes are held in 3.5 hour sessions, typically two or three per week. The classes include some of our most popular classes, including:

Class Start Date Number of Sessions
Business Analysis Fundamentals Sept. 26 6
Requirements Modeling Essentials Oct. 10 4
PMP Certification Preparation Oct. 10 6
Influencing Without Authority Nov. 29 4

Our virtual classes will provide the same PDUs/CDUs as in-person classes, and are eligible for CEUs with our Master's Certificate programs from Auburn University. Contact us for more information. Watch for more virtual classes soon!

Business Process Management Program Announced

We're pleased to announce our newest certificate program, the Business Process Management Certificate from Auburn University and Watermark Learning. Help your organization capture additional value from its processes where you will learn an industry standard framework for managing and improving business processes, develop new skills such as process analysis and process improvement, and apply basic facilitation and change management skills to help adopt new and improved processes.

We designed this new program because of a need by organizations to harness their process assets and increase both process efficiency and effectiveness. It complements our 5 day Associate Certificates in Project Management and Business Analysis. All certificates are $2450.00 for 5 days of classes and include CEUs from Auburn University.

Join us in December for these practical and engaging classes:

  • Getting Started in Business Process Management (Dec. 5)
  • Business Process Modeling (Dec. 6-7)
  • Business Process Improvement (Dec. 8-9)

For more information, visit our BPM Certificate page.

Classes are also available individually. For additional information, please call Roberta Hoffman, 952-921-0900, x208 or 1-800-646-9362, ext.208, roberta.hoffman@watermarklearning.com.

May 2011

Webinar Recordings Available

We have now published three of our popular webinar recordings to the Resources section of this web site. With just a quick registration, you can view any of our past sessions, including CBAP® and CCBA® Application Tips and Tricks, Pulp Fiction: BA Theory Versus Real Life, and Understanding Business Intelligence and Overcoming its Challenges. Each webinar could earn a PDU or CDU if you are a PMP® or CBAP® seeking re-certification. Read our self-reporting page for details on reporting webinar development units.

Watch for additional topics to be posted regularly, and check back for more announcements. Or, register as a member to receive our Project Brief eNewsletter for regular announcements such as these, and industry new, articles, tips, and more. You will then be able to view all of our webinars as we make them available.

View Webinar Recordings

March 2011

Watermark Learning Turns 19 this Month! 19 Scholarship Seats to be Granted in 2011

It is hard to believe that it was 19 years ago in March, 1992, that Watermark Learning began life as a training company. We are pleased and appreciative that our training and services are valuable to you, our loyal and supportive customers.

To honor the occasion, we will be giving out 19 scholarship seats to Watermark Learning public classes the remainder of the year. Candidates must be currently in job transition and submit a short application.

To enroll for consideration, please email your interest to marketinginfo@WatermarkLearning.com. Tell us how you would benefit by a Watermark Learning class and how it will help you land your next job. Contact us for further details and an application.

February 2011

Online Study Exam Launched

We are pleased to release our Online Study Exam today. Like its counter-part, the CBAP® Online Study Exam, we provide hundreds of realistic and challenging questions designed to prepare you for the exam. Read more about it and register today to ensure you pass the first time!

January 2011

International Partners Sought

Watermark Learning announces it is seeking international partners who wish to license courseware in business analysis, project management, and influencing skills. Watermark Learning courses reflect industry best practices, a practical approach, and foster an engaging delivery. For more information, please contact Chris Anderson, Vice President of Sales and Delivery. "We have been licensing our courses for several years," notes Anderson. "Now we are formally seeking partners who want to offer our world-class training and be up and running quickly."

 

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