This guide is all about getting an MBA in business intelligence. Once you obtain this degree, it includes a business intelligence MBA overview, an online MBA in business intelligence options, and potential career paths.
Today, we have access to data on almost anything imaginable. Data is immediately at our fingertips, with all the new tools and software constantly being developed, adopted, and improved.
As a result, technology and data are among the top assets for businesses today. Data is crucial for making informed decisions, improving performance, reducing inefficiencies, and researching and investigating new growth opportunities.
The practice of utilizing this data to improve and propel a business’s performance, combined with effective leadership methods, is known as business intelligence.
The need for educated, qualified business intelligence professionals and specialists isn’t going away anytime soon. If you are considering a career or furthering your education in business intelligence, then this article is for you.
In this article, we will provide an introduction and overview of what an MBA in business intelligence looks like, what you can do with it, and how it can pave the way for an enriching career.
What is an MBA in Business Intelligence and Analytics?
In our digitally-driven, data-centric era, business intelligence is becoming a huge asset to businesses of nearly all shapes, sizes, industries, and scopes. Therefore, it makes sense that more and more higher education and continuing education institutions are adding an MBA in business intelligence to their growing and expanding lists of programs.
An MBA in business intelligence covers two important facets of business that will stand out to any hiring manager:
Analytics: Students will learn how and where to gather important information and how to use and apply it.
Leadership: The second benefit from an MBA in business intelligence is the skills needed for a good business leader. All the information in the world isn’t useful to someone who doesn’t know how to incorporate it into their team’s practices.
As you’ll see when we get into the specifics later in this article, an MBA in business intelligence gives students all of the assets needed to excel in a business career. It teaches them how to become successful business leaders and arms them with the necessary tools to handle some of the biggest challenges they will face in the field.
Not only will they know how to analyze specific data and incorporate it into their business decisions, but they will also learn what it takes to make sound decisions and run both a team and a business as a whole.
Online business intelligence MBA programs
As the “traditional student” profile changes, the need and demand for more flexible and affordable degree programs are more important than ever. As a result, many higher education institutions offer students online course options rather than attending an on-site class or lecture.
Like an offline course, online programs still allow students to obtain a degree with more flexibility. They have the option to learn at their own pace, on their schedule, and from anywhere. A student can still expect to learn the same material and content, but just in a different format.
Before deciding to focus their education on an online degree, students have a common concern: “Is an online MBA in business intelligence as respected as an offline degree?” The answer is simple: yes.
Taking an online course is becoming more reputable and seen as a desirable trait by hiring managers. For example, taking an online course shows a lot about a student, their learning style, and work habits.
Virtual advantage: Students earning an MBA in business intelligence online have an advantage since most of their learning is done digitally. This prepares them for experiencing what a digital daily work life looks like.
Working independently: Taking the student out of the classroom allows them to work independently and do research independently. Although working in group settings is important, there’s something to be said for professionals who can be productive on their own.
Communication skills: Online learning allows students to take a divergent and reflective thinking approach to their questions and work and prepare them for any digital forms of communication leveraged in today’s business world.
Responsibility balance: Many of today’s students are mid-career level, which means they are likely holding down a full-time job, caring for a family, traveling, or all of the above. Of course, some offline students do the same, but online students have to structure their time differently and often cannot rely on set class times. Showing that you can successfully juggle responsibilities is a huge asset to any hiring manager.
Although completing an online MBA in business intelligence degree program is always an asset, not every institution and program is accredited. To ensure your chances for success, be sure to enroll in an MBA program from an accredited institution.
MBA in Business Intelligence Program Overview
An MBA in business intelligence is a program that will give you many tools to succeed in the business world. The primary skill set the program will introduce and eventually have you master is everything that has to do with analytical data. This includes:
- Big Data
- Data Mining
- Data Warehousing
- Statistical Programming for Business Analytics
The program doesn’t stop there. Not only does it gear you what is needed to lead your team and dissect important analytics, but it forces you to learn about different areas of the field that you will be able to leverage in your future career as a professional.
Below is a list of subjects you can expect to cover while completing your degree.
- Business analytics
As mentioned above, an MBA in business intelligence will open your eyes up to everything within the world of business. Along with that will come many projects in different areas, which can include:
- Analytic strategy/analytic tools
- Problem solving
- Management theory and practices
With technology constantly evolving, there is no question that new tools, techniques, and strategies will evolve and be introduced over time. With these programs, the student can expect to do extensive research on the constantly growing business intelligence and data analytics fields.
Most MBA in business intelligence programs require you to do a graduate-level research paper to conclude the course requirements.
The education you will receive while working to achieve an MBA in business intelligence is the first-hand experience of actually working in the field. With most institutions requiring an internship or fieldwork to complete your degree, you will get an opportunity to jump into the real-world, day-to-day role allowing you to put what you have learned into practice before taking your first steps into the career.
Here are some benefits to doing an internship or fieldwork:
- First-hand perspective of the day-to-day responsibilities
- Gain professional work experience
- Build skills from exposure to work profile
- Potentially convert an internship into a pre-placement offer
- Potential income (depending on the position/company)
Cost, Financial Aid, and Scholarships
Many factors go into determining the costs for an MBA in business intelligence. Of course, tuition costs per semester can vary between institutions, and whether you are an in-state or out-of-state student, and if you’re enrolling in an online or offline program. It’s best to budget between $14,000 to $50,000 per semester.
Before you panic, it’s important to know the additional options you have available to assist with these costs.
School-based scholarships and grants: The majority of institutions offer scholarships or grants that you can apply for, some of which you may not have to pay back. This is based on the student’s financial needs and whether or not other scholarships are awarded.
Assistantships and work-study programs: Many students can sign up or apply for work-study programs that allow them to work on campus to contribute to their tuition.
Third-party or private scholarships: Similar to institution-offered scholarships, plenty of outside organizations offer different forms of financial assistance. This may require you to do some homework, but if it can save you a significant portion of tuition, then it’s worth the extra time and effort.
Company sponsorship: If you already work full time for a company or have a company of your own, be sure to inquire about tuition reimbursement programs.
Federal student aid: Federal loans are also an excellent option for students. Though most have to be paid back, they are a great way to give the student some financial breathing room.
Career Outlook for an MBA in Business Intelligence
The beautiful thing about earning an MBA in business intelligence is practically endless options and opportunities. According to PayScale.com, the average salary for business intelligence analysts with an MBA is $77,000 a year. Earnings potential can go up with experience and management roles. A senior product manager with an MBA can make an average of $110,920.
Since the MBA program is designed to help you analyze data and move towards a management position, you have the skills to help make better decisions for a company regardless of your position.
MBA in Business Intelligence FAQs
An MBA in business intelligence focuses on two primary areas: analytics and leadership skills. Both of these areas are assets that can be applied to nearly any form of business.
Professionals who earn an MBA in business intelligence enjoy working with numbers interpreting data and insights, and they can put those insights into action to improve business performance. Regardless of your career path, an MBA in business intelligence is a prestigious and impressive qualification that you can leverage and put into practice in nearly any role.
Absolutely. Although not every institution offers both online and offline MBA in business intelligence programs, many offer one or the other. Hybrid degrees (a combination of a traditional campus-based degree and online degree elements) are becoming more popular.
Most institutions and programs require an internship or work experience in the field.