Business analysts’ jobs are in high demand and are predicted to grow well into the future. This guide breaks down the business analyst job market and is designed to overview the current business analyst job opportunities.
A business analyst is responsible for identifying inefficiencies within a company through data analysis. They work closely with executives, leaders, and other stakeholders to determine how their solutions can add value to the company and improve processes, budget inefficiencies, outdated software and hardware, and overall quality of service within the business.
Working within a budget themselves, they must ensure that the decisions and recommendations are aligned with company goals and will benefit the company in the long run.
Educational Requirements for Business Analytics Jobs
Although earning a degree in business analytics isn’t necessarily required to become a business analyst, it is a good idea. Earning a degree in business analytics is a great way to fully immerse yourself and explore a growing field.
Students or aspiring professionals who pursue a degree in business analytics can expect to learn the tools to make data-driven decisions that can propel an entire business forward. They will also develop the tools to build expertise in analytics and business strategy to help transform the whole landscape of a business.
For those who have higher aspirations of landing a business analytics job, there are plenty of business analytics master’s programs that will give you an added advantage. Many data scientist professionals received a master’s degree in math, statistics, computer science, or related fields. There are also business analytics-focused MBA programs. Interestingly, according to zippia.com, only 18 percent of business analyst professionals earned a master’s degree, while 71 percent earned a bachelor’s degree in business analytics.
If you choose to obtain a degree in business analytics, it covers a lot of territories. Many institutions offer a list of courses. For example, Georgetown University’s School of Business offers courses such as:
- Predictive analytics
- Applied economics and modeling
- Customer analytics
- Financial technology
- Visualization and storytelling data
- Data ethics and privacy
- Business strategy
In addition to completing the required coursework, many institutions need students to do independent research, participate in internships or fieldwork, and complete capstone projects. These are all opportunities to get great experience in a growing field.
Business Analytics Jobs Outlook
Being a business analyst can be a gratifying, fast-paced, and exciting career path. You will get the opportunity to work with top executives and leaders to help them identify challenges and areas for improvement and help them solve them.
Because business analytics is in high demand, it is highly competitive. As technology continues to evolve and advance, and as the need and demand for data increases, the demand for a reputable and experienced business analyst will only continue to grow.
In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the need and demand for management analysts and business analysts are expected to grow 14 percent from 2018 to 2030. Believe it or not, this growth rate is higher than the average for other fields and occupations!
Today, many companies and enterprises are introducing new tactics and techniques into their operations, such as business intelligence software. Business intelligence software allows companies to receive, analyze, and store data to enable business leaders to review their performance and trends. Business analysts often have the opportunity to work with business intelligence software and help companies adopt a business intelligence model to monitor and measure key performance indicators and data.
Although business intelligence is also a growing field in and of itself, without a well-versed business analyst to guide a leadership or executive team, business intelligence solutions only deliver a small picture of company performance. A business analyst will help the company see the bigger picture, conquer challenges and reach its goals.
Business Analyst Salary
The business world will continue to evolve and shift, not without its challenges. Therefore, the need, demand, and opportunities for a knowledgeable and experienced business analyst will only grow, which is good news for those looking to start a career in the field.
Full-time Business Analyst
Many business analysts can work with different departments depending on the position and company. This will require full days in the office or working remotely, presenting and communicating data and strategies to leaders and executives and guiding them through the next steps.
Business Analysis Consultant
Many business analysts work remotely on an independent consulting basis. This allows professionals to work flexible schedules, work with various clients and companies on projects, set their rates, and achieve a desirable work-life balance.
According to ZipRecruiter, here are some average salary ranges for entry-level, mid-level, and senior-level business analyst positions:
- Entry-level business analyst – $50,000 – $55,000
- Mid-level business analyst – $85,000 – $90,000
- Senior-level business analyst – $100,000 – $110,000
- Business analyst consultant – $75,000 – $100,000
Business Analyst Job Descriptions
There are also similar jobs and titles if you are interested in business analytics but aren’t too keen about becoming an analyst. According to newhorizons.com, here is a list of similar jobs and average annual salary ranges:
- Management Analyst ($80,000 – $90,000): Management Analysts work with business leaders and managers to improve a company’s processes to reduce costs and increase revenue. Usually hired on a consulting basis, a management analyst serves as a subject matter expert and focuses on a specific area or department within the company.
- IT Business Analyst ($95,000 – $100,00): IT Business Analysts focus their time on IT projects, such as implementing new infrastructures, adopting new software and applications and other software and business components, and rely heavily on their technology and business management expertise.
- Information Security Analyst ($95,000 – $100,000): The primary role of any business analyst is to identify weaknesses within an organization. Unfortunately, in today’s digitally-driven era, many companies have similar weak points—cybersecurity. An information security analyst will help companies identify weak points in their security and propose and recommend solutions to resolve them.
- Quantitative Analyst ($110,000 – $120,000): Quantitative analysts are financial engineers that analyze data and guide a business to make intelligent financial decisions. For example, if a company is thinking about taking a financial risk or making an investment, a quantitative analyst works alongside the company to determine the risk ratio.
- Data Scientist ($118,000 – $125,000): Data scientists utilize statistics and machine learning to dissect a catalog of data to create action items for a company’s decision-makers. This data tends to be incredibly complex, so many professionals in the field obtained a Master’s degree in mathematics, statistics, computer science, or another related field.
- Solutions Architect ($120,000 – $125,000): A solutions architect works within technical parameters to ensure that the solutions they create solve business problems and meet technical requirements. Solutions architects also consider how specific changes will impact the business.
Like most career paths, the more experience and time you put into professional development, research, or even continuing education, the more it will be reflected in your position, the accounts you work on, and your annual salary.
Where to Find Business Analyst Jobs
Like most available positions, you can find an open position as a business analyst on LinkedIn, Indeed, ZipRecruiter, Glassdoor, etc. However, these job boards are diluted with excessive positions and applicants. Sending in your application and resume can often get lost in the shuffle.
The good news is that there are plenty of helpful resources that will help you cast a smaller but more targeted job search. Here are a few that allow you to customize your job search and narrow it down to positions based on distance from your home.
- icrunchdata.com – This is a great job board for people looking for IT or data-focused careers. It allows you to filter by location, refine your selected skillset, and create custom alerts.
- IIBA – The International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA) allows job searchers to customize their search. This site also includes a helpful resources section for those new to the field.
- Businessanalystcrossing.com – This private job board does the research for you. It aggregates open business analyst positions from other public job boards and websites and brings them all into one place.
Four Steps to Land a Business Analyst Job
Pursuing any career typically involves the same steps: expressing an interest in a particular field, earning a degree, certification, or education, gaining on-the-job experience, and working your way up the professional ladder. However, because each career path is unique, some steps along the journey can differ.
Here are four steps to becoming a business analyst:
Step 1: Understand the Role
There is a lot that goes into becoming a successful business analyst. Businesses rely on experienced, savvy, and knowledgeable analysts to help them resolve their biggest challenges. Therefore, understanding everything involved in the role of a business analyst is important to make sure it is the best career path for you.
Step 2: Earn Qualifications
Since many skills required to be a successful business analyst are only introduced in the classroom, it’s up to the aspiring professional to take them further into the real world. In addition to taking courses or supplementing your skillset or experience, business analysts will often earn a business analyst degree to expand their skillset and credentials and gain a competitive edge against other job applicants, students, or peers.
Step 3: Apply Your Knowledge
After earning a degree, certification, or completing a course in Business Analytics—and the celebration is over—it’s time to buckle down and put your hard-earned education to good use. By applying what you’ve learned to real-world situations and scenarios, you can practice your new knowledge and take your next steps to become a successful business analyst.
Step 4: Go For Your Career Goals
Whether you want to work at a Fortune 500 company or as an independent consultant, start pursuing your career goals. This can include building up your network of connections, polishing up your resume or LinkedIn profile, attending job fairs, and responding to job listings. Regardless of your preferred career path, start getting your name out there!
A business analyst analyzes data and creates solutions for implementation. An analyst also works with stakeholders to identify inefficiencies and challenges, then correct and improve them. Similar fields and job titles include management analyst, IT business analyst, information security analyst, quantitative analyst, data scientist, and solutions architect. A significant amount of career options come with a degree in business analytics. To give you an idea of what to expect to make during your career in the field, here are some rough numbers and position titles with average annual salary ranges: Entry-level business analysis professional $50,000 to $55,000, mid-level business analyst professional $85,000 to $90,000, senior-level business analyst professional $100,000-$120,000, business analyst consultant $75,000-$100,000.
Earning a degree in business analytics is a great way to get started. It will give you the tools needed to make data-driven decisions, and it will build your expertise in analytics and business strategy to help you transform the entire landscape of a business. Although not always required, a master’s degree will be beneficial for more in-depth positions, such as a data analyst or IT analyst.