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The Best Business Intelligence Careers of 2021

Business intelligence highlights data-driven decision-making for businesses and organizations. If you already have a data science background, then you can pursue business intelligence jobs. These careers allow you to contribute a scientific and quantitative approach to business.

Find out some of the highest-paying business intelligence careers. This guide has the relevant information you need on salaries, potential job growth, expectations, and required education. Read below to learn more about the best business intelligence careers of 2021.

Why Business Intelligence?

Business intelligence (BI) is a discipline that combines data science, business analytics, and best practices, and data visualization. BI uses the tools and techniques from these fields to create more data-driven business decisions. Your primary task is to analyze data and quantitatively understand business processes.

One of the main drivers of business intelligence is big data. Large chunks of data sets are processed and analyzed using BI tools like Tableau, SAS, Oracle, and more. These cutting-edge technologies are used to yield accurate and reliable results.

Where Do Business Intelligence Professionals Work?

Business intelligence professionals work in the data departments of businesses. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), industries with the highest rate of employment of data experts are computer systems design and management and consulting. These are two fields that rely heavily on data to make business decisions.

BI professionals can also delve into scientific research and insurance industries to look for opportunities. The BLS also identifies these two industries as top employers. These industries also provide competitive salaries.

The Highest-Paying Business Intelligence Careers: 2021 List

The Highest-Paying Business Intelligence Careers: 2021 List

Curious about what specific business intelligence jobs you can apply for? Below is a list of the highest-paying BI careers of 2021. Job growth percentages refer to the number of job opportunities between 2019 and 2029.

Computer and Information Systems Manager

Median Salary: $151,150

Projected Job Growth: 10%

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

A computer and information manager takes on the task of finding and suggesting reliable technological improvements within the organization. As an organization collates big data, the computer system should be able to seamlessly process that data. Having a reliable IT system within the organization helps find business intelligence data.

Backed up by in-depth data analysis, the IT manager looks for the right tools and programs to cater to the needs of the business. You must follow technological trends to find potential new strategies and tools for future projects. With all the information and data you have, you can formulate short-term and long-term goals.

Enterprise Architect

Median Salary: $135,039

Projected Job Growth: 31%*

Min. Education Required: Master’s Degree

An enterprise architect is in charge of maintaining the IT tools and services used by an organization. Typically, you need to have at least a master’s degree and several years of experience to qualify for this role. You are largely leading the big technological changes and improvements within the organization.

Backed up by strong data analysis, you are tasked with developing solutions and creating reliable technological products. You are also part of the team that identifies security requirements for potential new technologies. You are also expected to design the overall architecture of the organization’s technological system.

Data Scientist

Median Salary: $96,609

Projected Job Growth: 31%*

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

A data scientist must be an expert in statistics and data analysis. You will be dealing with large chunks of data and using the appropriate BI tools to generate insights. This data could be coming from different sources, and it is your task to reconcile them and utilize these findings for problem-solving.

Some of the industries where you can bring your business intelligence skills as a data scientist would be marketing, finance, and sales. These are fields that rely on data to improve future product and service decisions. As a data scientist, you must know how to code with Python, SQL, and R for data visualization and analysis.

Statistician

Median Salary: $93,290

Projected Job Growth: 33%

Min. Education Required: Master’s Degree

A statistician is a sought-after professional in business intelligence. BI relies on statistical processing and analysis of data using statistical tools. Using computational and mathematical techniques, you provide data findings to help organizations evaluate their business strategies.

You are responsible for utilizing statistical and mathematical techniques to provide solutions for practical business needs. Being adept in different statistical software gives you an advantage as it proves your expertise. You also need to be able to communicate these findings to relevant stakeholders.

Data Engineer

Median Salary: $92,489

Projected Job Growth: 31%*

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

These professionals use data models to interpret data sets within data structures and algorithms. With an in-depth knowledge of computer languages, you are expected to translate algorithms into codes that can be interpreted and used for business decisions. With this information, you can come up with technical solutions for the organization.

One of the requirements of being a data engineer is proficiency in SQL as you will be dealing with data and databases. You are responsible for interpreting data findings and extracting insights out of them. You must also be able to develop reports and charts that your specific business audience can understand.

Management Analyst

Median Salary: $87,660

Projected Job Growth: 11%

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

A management analyst is a go-to person for an organization’s future business strategies. Your primary task is to come up with ways an organization can efficiently do business. Every decision that you make can impact profits and revenues, so strong data backup is necessary.

You are responsible for gathering reliable information and data about the organization and its products or services. Aside from marketing data, you must also involve yourself in financial data and employment reports. You can also take on the role of a project manager as you will be churning out projects to strengthen the organization’s standing in the market.

Operations Research Analyst

Median Salary: $86,200

Projected Job Growth: 25%

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

An operations research analyst makes good use of statistical and analytical skills to solve business problems. You will be involved in conversations about resource allocation, developing production strategies, and managing supply chains. With your statistical background, you can create predictive models to forecast future growth.

You are responsible for identifying problems in different aspects of the business and helping find solutions for them. Part of your task is to make sure that relevant data and information is gathered and stored in a database for future use.

Business Intelligence Developer

Median Salary: $81,116

Projected Job Growth: 31%*

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

A business intelligence developer primarily works on databases. Your main task is to provide IT solutions that could significantly improve and elevate business processes. You will be dealing with testing and monitoring software programs related to data processing.

As a BI developer, you are involved in database management so you are expected to know how to code with SQL. You’ll create data models to generate quality business intelligence tools and reports. Part of your task is to ensure good data architecture so that information can easily flow from one database to another within the organization’s system.

Business Intelligence Analyst

Median Salary: $69,633

Projected Job Growth: 31%*

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

A business intelligence analyst’s job is to guide different departments and ensure collaboration in reaching business goals. You must be equipped with unique ideas and strategies, but these should be strongly supported by data. You also need to be prepared to conduct training for other employees.

As a BI analyst, you are expected to be familiar with generating reports using BI tools like Oracle and SAP. You are responsible for providing data analysis and data modeling to be sent to an organization’s data warehouse. Finally, you must pay attention to detail to observe data patterns.

Data Mining Specialist

Median Salary: $67,407

Projected Job Growth: 31%*

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

A data mining specialist designs data models that extract information from enterprise or business systems. Once this information is extracted, the data mining specialist must organize it into a database file. Your task is to create reports and analyze the data you’ve gathered.

The purpose of a data mining specialist is to find patterns and trends in data to report to shareholders. With this information, the organization can arrive at a sound business decision to meet targets and goals. You need strong business intelligence and statistical skills to excel in this role.

*Job growth statistics have been sourced from the general data scientist job outlook from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

What Education Is Required to Pursue a Career in Business Intelligence?

What Education Is Required to Pursue a Career in Business Intelligence?

Business intelligence careers require at least a bachelor’s degree. It could be a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Information Technology, Statistics, or Business. Most of these careers also demand that you have some prior work experience as a lot of the tasks involve business decision-making.

Some careers require a minimum of a master’s degree. Since these careers are usually under business management, having a Master of Business Administration (MBA) can give you a competitive advantage. Your career path in business intelligence will improve as you acquire higher education and job experience.

Can I Study Business Intelligence Online?

Yes, you can study business intelligence online. More schools and universities are turning to online learning in recent years. Online programs make getting a degree more accessible. Business intelligence can be studied online through universities, community colleges, bootcamps, and online course providers.

Universities offering online data science bachelor’s degrees can provide the same quality of education as traditional learning. You can complete a degree and be prepared for a career opportunity in business intelligence. There are online data science master’s degrees as well if you are looking to further your studies.

Common Entry-Level Jobs in Business Intelligence

While a lot of business intelligence careers are meant for those with experience, there are still entry-level jobs in the field. Below are some of the common business intelligence careers that you can try applying for.

Entry-Level Data Scientist

Median Salary: $85,283

Projected Job Growth: 31%*

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

Your job as an entry-level data scientist is to find insights from relevant data. You need to be proficient in coding SQL and Python as your work revolves around the management of databases and data visualization. Knowing machine learning could also give you a competitive advantage.

Entry-Level Management Consultant

Median Salary: $70,558

Projected Job Growth: 11%**

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

As an entry-level management consultant, you are involved in facilitating research efforts in finding solutions for business issues. You’ll deal with a lot of data and information to update existing processes. You need strong analytical and statistical skills to qualify for this job.

Entry-Level Business Intelligence Analyst

Median Salary: $59,856

Projected Job Growth: 31%*

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

A job as an entry-level business intelligence analyst allows you to immediately pursue a career in this field. These professionals participate in various projects to come up with solutions for the business. You must be equipped with relevant skills in formulating business strategies and in utilizing BI tools.

Entry-Level Data Analyst

Median Salary: $56,246

Projected Job Growth: 31%*

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

An entry-level data analyst is tasked to evaluate various data analysis tools. You need to find the most efficient tools that could yield reliable data results and findings. You are most likely to assist a senior data analyst who is in charge of the overall data processing of an organization.

Entry-Level Database Administrator

Median Salary: $56,050

Projected Job Growth: 10%***

Min. Education Required: Bachelor’s Degree

Your task as an entry-level database administrator is to use specific software to manage data and organize databases. You must know how to code SQL as you will be handling a lot of data. You are also to ensure that data is available to authorized users when they need it.

*Job growth statistics have been sourced from BLS information on general data scientist jobs.
**Job growth statistics have been sourced from BLS information on management analysts.
***Job growth statistics have been sourced from BLS information on database administrators.

Is a Business Intelligence Career for Me?

Yes. If you have an interest or background in data science, statistics, computer programming, or information technology, you will lead a successful career in business intelligence. There are a lot of factors that go into making business decisions.

With big data within the reach of most organizations, utilizing data and information to make more reliable insights has become part of the standard practice. Skills from different disciplines are combined, so you have to be open to a wide range of opportunities.

Resources and educational pathways are available everywhere online, so take advantage of the chance to learn business intelligence skills today.

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