Do you feel a special connection to data, numbers, and how they stack up to help a business grow? Then it looks like you are leaning toward one of the fastest-growing fields today – business analysis. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has predicted an 11 percent growth rate in the employment of management analysts, which is much higher when compared to the average growth of 5 percent across all professions. The steep demand curve for business analysts also affects salaries.
Business analytics is the practice of analyzing a business’ processes, operating procedures, and data sets to find insights that will help improve efficiency and boost performance. A business analyst salary is among the highest in the market since they are in demand and help organizations reduce costs, inefficiency, and help strategize growth.
Why Are Business Analysts in Demand?
Businesses today have access to enormous data sets which they can use to gain an edge over the competition. With a good business analyst, a company can leverage data to define problems, gain insights and optimize its operations. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, analyst job opportunities are expected to grow 14% by 2030.
Business Analyst Salary Range
The salary a business analyst can draw depends entirely on the amount of knowledge and experience they possess. Therefore, while the demand for analysts is high, it is a highly skilled position suited to those with at least a couple of years of experience.
An entry-level position with the job title business analyst will offer you an average base salary of US $37,000. This is the standard for someone with 0-2 years of experience in the field. At this level, knowledge of basic business frameworks is necessary. As a candidate, you must check and measure these frameworks and determine how they affect the business. After 2-4 years in the field, you can start to draw an intermediate business analyst salary. This usually arrives at an average of US $85,000. At this level, you should be familiar with business frameworks and databases and should be able to create frameworks to help clients achieve their objectives.
With 4-8 years in the domain, you should be able to lead and direct a team of analysts to use their skills to satisfy client objectives. This will require good communication and leadership skills. Your designation at this level will be that of a senior business analyst, and the average yearly salary you can draw will be around US $100,300.
After 8-10 years in business analytics, you can become a business analyst consultant or Chief Information Officer (CIO). The average salary you can draw as a business analyst consultant is US $113,000. As a consultant or CIO, you will be expected to be an expert in business analysis, strategies, processes, and frameworks. In addition, you should be able to shape businesses and help them reduce costs and redundancies to help them grow.
What Is the Highest Business Analyst Salary in the USA?
Business analysts in the USA can earn approximately $84,000 annually. However, with a few years of experience in the field and upskilling through certifications and courses, your yearly salary can rise to approximately $144,000. The way companies determine the salary of their business analysts depends on a multitude of factors. These include region, company size, qualifications, skills, etc. Learning relevant skills in the field will help you keep growing in the right direction.
You can also try applying for jobs in top companies to increase your salary. Some top-paying companies that hire business analysts include Intuit ($131,708), Fannie May ($127,064), Google ($121,320), etc. As for the regions in the U.S. that have the highest-paying business analyst jobs, here’s a list:
- Houston, TX – $105,844
- Chicago, IL – $87,276
- Washington, DC – $86,986
Average Business Analyst Salary Based on the Job Title
- Junior Business Analyst – US $66,313
- Business Analyst – US $84,144
- Senior Business Analyst – US $98,470
- Business Systems Analyst – US $87,173
- Business Systems Consultant – US $91,972
Note: All salary numbers have been curated from Indeed.com.
Roles and Responsibilities of a Business Analyst
Business analysts have a variety of responsibilities. Primarily, they need to analyze the functional and technical aspects of the business. They use their analysis to improve the efficiency and performance of employees. Business analysts comb through extensive data sets to derive insights and create graphics and tables to visualize data. They are tasked with figuring out ways to improve processes and operations. They also need to work on budget analysis and forecasting. Lastly, they must make decisions to improve business strategies and plans.
Build New Skills in Business Analytics
While a career in business analysis can be gratifying, you must develop skills that will help you effectively perform your role to make that attractive business analyst salary. Here are some of the skills you will require:
#1: Critical and Analytical Thinking
While critical thinking can sound like a basic ability, it is a skill you must master to become a business analyst. You must analyze your client’s requirements, assess multiple options before reaching a solution, and learn how to prioritize tasks.
#2: Communication and Teamwork
As a business analyst, you will need to gather information to start a project. In addition, you will be working with various teams while executing a project. Moreover, you will have to communicate your results to clients and other stakeholders effectively to deliver the best results when your insights are used. Communication skills are critical to the success of any business analyst.
#3: Decision Making
Your decisions will have a direct impact on the growth of the company. Before approaching a problem, analysts must think of alternative ways to solve it and decide on the best course of action based on a logical analysis. A business analyst must constantly refine and improve decision-making skills to remain effective long-term.
#4: Programming Languages
Programming skills are also critical for a business analyst to attain the best possible salary. Python and R will help you solve complex problems. They also have extensive libraries dedicated to data analytics. A business analyst must be comfortable speaking about all types of coding languages, including Kotlin, MATLAB, and more.
#5: Data Management and SQL
Business analysts work with structured data. You must be familiar with database management and SQL to store and process this heavy data. This will help you access, retrieve and analyze data.
#6: Representation and Reporting
Representation and reporting are a cornerstone of a business analyst’s work. Your efforts will lead to positive changes in the functioning of the organization. However, if your analysis is not correctly reported and insights are not communicated to stakeholders, the validity of your work is voided.
Getting a high-paying business analyst job is challenging but rewarding. You will always need to look for newer, more challenging opportunities, pay great attention to detail, and demonstrate commitment to your job. Most of all, you will need the relevant skills to exceed expectations in your role. Signing up for an online business analytics course on Emeritus will help you stand out from your competition and maximize the salary you can draw from your employer. So, get started on your exciting journey in the world of business analytics today!
By Tanish Pradhan
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