Business Analyst

How To Become A Business Analyst

Organizations increasingly rely on data to assist with decision-making, and they need professionals to assess this information and provide solutions to operational challenges. This role belongs to the business analyst, who scrutinizes data to glean insights and boost the company’s productivity, efficiency, and growth.

The School of Business at Fairfax University of America offers bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in business administration, both of which can lead to a career in business analytics. By enrolling in these programs at our Virginia campus in the Washington, D.C., area, students experience personal and professional growth and gain the skills necessary to be transformative leaders in a complex, global society.

What Is a Business Analyst?

The primary goal of a business analyst is to find areas of improvement in their organization. They identify issues in all aspects of the business, from how programs are run to how technology is used. One of the most important soft skills for business analysts is effective communication, as they frequently present data trends and offer solutions to management.

Job opportunities for business analysts exist across numerous industries, from commercial businesses to non-profit organizations to government bureaus. Tasks required of business analysts differ based on their specific positions, but some general duties most perform include:

  • Understanding the processes, tactics, and goals of their organization
  • Examining processes to establish their effectiveness, overall cost, and whether they produce desired outcomes
  • Conducting financial and variance analyses
  • Organizing functional and technical needs to determine what requires the most immediate attention
  • Overseeing projects to check performance and ensure deadlines are met
  • Supervising the research, development, and implementation of technology or systems that demand more in-depth technical knowledge
  • Maintaining continual contact with executives to ensure they comprehend how changes will affect the company’s overarching goals
  • Developing financial models to facilitate key decisions
  • Creating charts, tables, and other visual aids to assist with presentations
  • Mapping out business structures
  • Assisting with budgeting and business projections
  • Using a variety of tools to guide efforts, such as Excel and SQL

Career Advancement Opportunities for Business Analysts

Jobs for business analysts prove to be quite rewarding. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics states that the average yearly wages for management analysts—another name used for business analysts—is approximately $93,000. This amount is significantly higher than the median annual salary of all occupations, which is $45,760.

Granted, these high-paying jobs are likely found in more advanced business analyst careers. A recent college graduate in an entry position may make less. However, by pursuing higher education and earning designations such as Certified Management Consultant or Certified Business Analysis Professional, you may be able to progress to a senior-level position.

Senior business analysts take charge of teams within organizations and spearhead complex initiatives, such as business process redesign. Displaying strong leadership skills is vital for advancing your career as a business analyst and may augment your chances of obtaining higher management roles and consulting positions. With enough expertise in the field, you may be able to open a private consultancy and become your own boss.

Why Earn a Business Administration Degree?

If you wish to become a business analyst, consider pursuing a business administration degree at Fairfax University of America. You can enroll in our BS in Business Administration program and learn how organizations interact with people and how to make positive financial and social impacts in your role. One of the primary domain areas of this program is business development and analysis.

We also offer a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree program for students who wish to expand their knowledge. In this program, you will gain the analytical, data-driven, and research-based competencies necessary to succeed in a host of industries. Additionally, business analytics is one of the five specializations of the MBA program.

Enroll at Fairfax University of America

At Fairfax University of America, our goal is to set a new standard in higher education. Our students not only learn the hard skills they need to thrive in different fields, but also human development and leadership proficiencies that enable them to produce transformative change in an increasingly global society.

We take a student-centered approach to education that meets students where they are—regardless of their academic performance in high school. Our diverse student body at our Virginia campus near Washington, D.C., features students from poly-ethnic communities and multi-lingual families, as well as those from faith-based households.

You can request information to learn more about a business administration degree or our other programs or complete an application to enroll today.