With ever-increasing rates of data production and consumption, every organization has growing need to use information and large amounts of data to inform business decisions. Whether it’s considering what departments are most efficient to deciding whether prices are where they should be, analytics are a crucial part of modern business operations.
And since data isn’t going away anytime soon, for people who are considering earning advanced degrees in data science or related fields, getting a master’s degree in business analytics is an attractive option for many especially online masters in business analytics degrees.
There is a virtually limitless number of job titles in business analytics, including the obvious (business analytics manager) as well as roles within any number of departmental groups, including communications, marketing, operations, finance and more.
What do salaries for business analytics professionals look like, and how much growth can people with this degree expect over the next several years?
Business Analytics Education
While every program is a bit different, generally graduate-level degree programs in business analytics provide broad training in areas like statistics, statistical programming, predictive modeling, marketing, data mining and operations.
As with most educational programs, most students also will have a chance to customize their degree tracks by focusing on specialty areas, such as healthcare or international finance. Here’s a look at some typical course titles business analytics students are likely to encounter in master’s degree programs:
- Data-Driven Decision Making
- Operations Analytics
- Data Mining in R
- Decision Models
- Data Visualization
- Decision Under Risk
- Revenue Management and Pricing
- Data Privacy and Ethics
- Artificial Intelligence
- Managerial Judgment and Decision Making
- Web Data Analytics
- Business Analytics in Marketing, Finance and Operations
- SQL Databases for Business Analytics
- Communication for Management
Master’s in Business Analytics Salary
As we’ve mentioned business analytics is a broad tent, and there are dozens of job titles that fit within that. The good news, though, is that for most people with master’s degrees in business analytics, not only are job titles quite diverse, reflecting the broad adoption of the principles of business analytics, wages tend to be higher for those with advanced degrees.
In fact, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average person with a master’s degree makes about $10,000 more than their bachelor’s-degree-holding counterpart over the course of a year.
Let’s look at what various sources tell us about typical salaries for business analytics professionals.
The BLS does not distinguish business analyst or business analytics manager from other types of data-heavy occupations. However, one role, management analyst, comes quite close to what a typical business analyst graduate will cover in their master’s degree program. These professionals average a salary that’s well above the national median, and for those with a master’s degree, wages are likely to be even higher.
Median salary: $83,610
Online job board Indeed listed nearly 2,500 job openings for management analysts at the end of February 2020, and the area with the highest concentration of jobs is Washington, D.C., and the surrounding suburban communities. Entry-level wages for management analysts start around $55,000 with salaries on the high end reaching $90,000 and higher.
Average salary: $70,000
According to Glassdoor, a platform that aggregates salaries, job openings and company reviews, listed tens of thousands of management analyst jobs across the United States in late February 2020. Locations and industries were quite diverse, with jobs in sectors as diverse as healthcare and auto manufacturing.
Average salary: $101,000
Payscale, a compensation information clearinghouse, indicates that entry-level management analyst jobs are about 20% less well-paying than average, while experienced and late-career individuals, including those who’ve earned a master’s degree, can expect to make about one-quarter more than the average.
Average salary: $66,155
Staffing marketplace Ziprecruiter listed hundreds of management analyst jobs in late winter 2020, with most jobs being in either the nation’s capital or the West Coast. Even entry-level salaries were high, and the most lucrative jobs paid into the six figures.
Average salary: $85,000
Job Demand for Master’s in Business Analytics
The U.S. economy is expected to expand by about 5% in terms of the total number of jobs by 2028, but for management analysts, a growth rate nearly three times that high is projected. Among most business-related occupations, this is one of the most rapid projected rates of growth.
Management analyst job opening growth, 2016-26, highest and lowest
|Nevada||25.0%||District of Columbia||9.0%|
|North Carolina||19.2%||New Mexico||10.7%|
Every state is expected to see a positive rate of change in management analyst employment, though some growth rates are likely to be quite modest. Alaska, for instance, is expected to see management analyst occupation rise by only 1.9%, while several other states will see these jobs expand by more than 20%. Utah is expected to set the national pace with a growth rate of 57.4%.
Whatever their eventual job path, people who earn a master’s degree in business analytics will gain the type of education that will enable them to make informed, wise decisions relating to all manner of businesses and industries. We explored only one specific job title here, management analyst, but with rapid growth projected in all data-related occupations, the future looks to be very bright for highly trained business analytics professionals.
- Salary and job opening data from Indeed, Glassdoor, Payscale and Ziprecruiter was accessed in February 2020.
- Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Management Analysts. (2019.) Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/business-and-financial/management-analysts.htm
- Bureau of Labor Statistics, Career Outlook, Measuring the value of education. (2018.) Retrieved from https://www.bls.gov/careeroutlook/2018/data-on-display/education-pays.htm
- ProjectionsCentral.com, Long-Term Occupational Projections, 2016-2026. (Undated.) Retrieved from https://projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm