MS in Business Analytics: Five Careers in Data Analytics
Before even beginning courses in the MS in Business Analytics degree, I started exploring what types of job opportunities would be available to me after graduating from the program. I came to Emory with the intention of making a career switch and wanted to set myself up for a career that I could enjoy for the long haul. I know that most students come in with the same mindset.
As an ambassador for the MSBA program, often the first question that prospective students ask me is related to the career options that the program would create for them. The MS in Business Analytics prepares us to translate data into insights and speak the languages of business, data, and technology to hit the ground running in a variety of jobs and industries. Through the preferences of my cohort graduating in May 2021 and the employment outcomes of the previous three cohorts, I have gathered five of the popular MSBA jobs for business analytics degree grads.
Careers in data analytics:
- Data Scientist: The role of a data scientist tends to involve using historical data to predict future outcomes. Data scientists often use machine learning techniques and are very hands-on with statistical programming. MS in Business Analytics degree students who are more drawn to the technical side of analytics tend to be more attracted to data scientist roles.
- Data Analyst: Data analysts are storytellers. Data analysts typically manipulate and analyze data to identify trends, format the information effectively, and deliver the information to business leaders for better informed decision making. Analysts often use data visualization tools such as Tableau to create dashboards that deliver insights.
- Business Intelligence Analyst: While there is quite a bit of overlap between these different job titles, business intelligence analysts tend to do more analysis of past trends rather than making predictions about the future. Business intelligence usually leans heavily on the use of descriptive analytics.
- Consultant: MSBA students who are drawn to work variety and travel tend to be interested in consulting careers. There are opportunities to work as a consultant for analytics-specific consulting companies or as a data science consultant within the big consulting firms. While the type of data science work varies depending on the exact consulting role, the analytics skillset is valuable in a consulting career because it can apply to a variety of problem-solving situations and industries.
- Decision Scientist: Decision scientists typically rely the most heavily on mathematics and statistics out of the five roles listed. As the name suggests, decision scientists use company data to help nontechnical stakeholders make decisions under uncertainty. Decision scientists look for insights in the data as they relate to the decision at hand.