5 In-Demand Career Paths for Business Analysts
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5 In-Demand Career Paths for Business Analysts

5.5 min read

It’s no secret that data is everywhere. From basic numbers to intricate formulas, data provides businesses of all sizes with information needed to track sales and performance, introduce new products and services, and to encourage data-driven business decisions. In order to reach optimal performance and maintain a competitive edge, it’s essential for brands to gather, analyze, and put these big data sets to good use. This is where business analysts come into play.

Business analysts act as liaisons between internal departments by collecting, distributing, and managing company data. 5 in-demand career paths for business analysts recruiters look to fulfill include IT business analyst, data analysis scientist, system analyst, business analyst manager, and computer science data analyst.

Business analysts normally connect with recruiters to kick off their career with entry-level positions related to their undergraduate degree. In fact, The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates the need for business analysts to increase 14% by 2024. This is one of the highest average percentages among growing occupations. Let’s take a closer look at upcoming opportunities for business analyst professionals as the evolution of big data takes shape.

IT Business Analyst

As data collection increases and technology continues to develop, the role of the IT business analysts is expanding as well. Job descriptions are developing beyond IT and software to include business components with the ability to focus on the strategy aspect of their roles – and this transition presents a spike in career opportunities.

Let’s explore exactly how the IT Business Analyst job description is expanding and what this means for those in the industry:

  • Developing stronger roles in the business process
  • Opportunity to work on more than one operating system
  • IT business analysts are able to work on more than one project at a time

If you find yourself exploring BA career paths that focus on technology and business components of managing corporate data, an IT Business Analyst role could be for you. One popular career is IT project manager – which earns an average salary of $94,400 USD with potential to exceed $120,000 USD. Job projection is expected to increase up to 9% by 2026, according to The Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The Top IT Business Analyst Courses

Recent college graduates and established professionals who are motivated to enhance their IT business analytics education are encouraged to explore the following online certifications before submitting your resume:

  • Assessing business goals
  • Data organization best practices
  • Project and team management
  • Internal corporate communication

Data Analysis Scientist

If you have a knack for picking apart collected data, drawing up actionable insights, and putting together pieces of the big data puzzle, check out the growing path of a data analyst scientist. To be honest, data analyst scientists are extraordinarily hard to find, given the combination of necessary skill sets and the requirement of data science education.

A strong data scientist is someone who can extract meaning from and interpret data – which requires methods from statistics and machine learning. Svetlana Sicular, an analyst of Gartner Research and Advisory, believes the building blocks of understanding corporate data from a scientific point begins with understanding massaging, correlation between numerical trends, and fully utilizing internal resources. For data scientists who strive to earn their yearly salary of $130,300 USD, they need to figure out ways to think outside of the technical box when it comes to mastering code and statistics.

Consider these points if you’re thinking about venturing into the works of data analyst scientists:

  • Can I communicate well, both verbally and visually?
  • Am I willing to take on new challenges and problem solving?
  • Do I have a strong interest in data collection, analyzing, and interpretation?

Data scientists are highly educated. According to a study from the University of Wisconsin, 88 percent of professionals have a master’s degree in mathematics, statistics, computer science, or management information systems, while 46 percent have PhD educations.

Business Analyst Manager

It takes a team of organized analysts to develop, implement, and collect data, and business analyst managers hold the responsibility of overseeing their ongoing education and coaching. Here’s a few common responsibilities:

  • Pull research that supports decision-making processes at a senior-management level
  • Ensure continuous improvement
  • Synchronize data-driven projections, valuations, and analysis
  • Mentor and train entry-level business analysts
  • Encouraging open communication to enhance individual and team performance

Collabera recruiters look for in-house BA managers and consultants who master these skills and are able to make proactive modifications as business grows.

This positions require a bachelor’s degree in finance or business administration – along with experience as a general business analyst. To earn positions with high-profile companies, candidates are expected to have a master’s degree in business administration. The average base salary as of January 2018 is $70,170 USD. If you’re a self-motivated individual starting out in the world of BA, applying for a manager position comes with experience, but you can add value to yourself by taking advantage of online courses.

Job Description of a Business Analyst Manager

Business analyst managers strive to help employees solidify business analytic skill sets, and ultimately enhance careers, through the following roles:

  • Recruit and hire for an expanding BA team
  • Oversee employee on-boarding processes and training new hires
  • Coaching, reviewing, and encouraging employee growth
  • Defining best practices as a business analyst
  • Execute organizational goals

Quantitative Analyst

Think of a quantitative data analyst as someone who develops, implements, and presents mathematical models to support financial decisions on risk management, investments, and pricing structures. Commonly referred to as “quants”, their #1 goal is to reduce business risks while setting up maximum profits for brands.

There are four main types of quantitative positions in the finance industry that are quickly growing:

  • Quantitative trader
  • Quantitative researcher
  • Financial engineer
  • Quantitative developer

Due to the challenging nature of work, quants hold a lot of value, and in turn are able to command rewarding salaries. Entry-level positions earn an average salary of $63,000 USD with potential to exceed $126,000 USD. A master’s degree or PhD in a “quantitative” subject, such as mathematics, economics, financial engineering, and computational finance is required. If you have additional questions about educational requirements and desired experience for quantitative analyst positions, get in touch with Collabera’s team of skilled job recruiters.

Data Business Analyst

While data analysts and business analysts both work with data, the main difference lies in what they actually do with that data. Martin Schedlbauer, an associate clinical professor and director of information and data sciences programs at Northeastern University, gave a simple explanation:

Data is a means to the end for business analysts, while data is the end for data analysts.”

If you’re a numbers person who excels in statistics, programming, and research skills, a data business analyst position could be for you. These professionals work with large sets of data to identify trends, develop charts, and create visual presentations to assist with business making decisions. Employers tend to seek data business analysts with a graduate level degree in business-related fields and career experience.

Data business analysts who monitor the hardware, software, and IT services for a business can expect to earn salaries between $77,500 – $ 100,000 USD, according to a 2017 salary report from Glassdoor, which is a 3.8% increase from to 2016.

Top Cities for a Data Business Analyst

Tech positions are becoming more and more in demand – and data business analysts are among the most sought after. Here are the top 5 cities where employers are looking, according to Glassdoor:

  • San Jose, California, USA
  • San Francisco, California, USA
  • Seattle, Washington, USA
  • Boston, Massachusetts, USA
  • Washington, D.C., USA

To learn more about the many hats that business analysts wear, as well as education requirements, desired skills, and job projections that compliment your interest and experience, contact Collabera’s recruiting resources today to explore available positions.

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