The key to business innovation? Think sound decision-making through the understanding of data.
That’s what business analytics delivers — a means to collect, segment, interpret, and act on data. The industry is exploding, producing master’s of business analytics grads globally who are using analytics to push the needle in industries such as finance, technology, consulting, retail, and entrepreneurship. For some, personal fulfillment is their greatest accomplishment following graduation.
“My biggest accomplishment in my career so far is getting up every day to perform a job that I love while being surrounded by amazing teammates that help me grow both as a professional and a person,” says Esade Business School’s Pol Borrellas i Martín.
ANALYTICS GRADS FINDING FULFILLMENT & SUCCESS
Not only are the graduates of business analytics master’s programs finding fulfillment in their personal lives, their specialized skills are helping them succeed in the workforce. No wonder, business analytics is among the fastest growing master’s programs in business and a field that has become increasingly popular with students and their potential employers. You’ll find a bevy of rankings of these programs with a Google search but none of them are very credible. Still, we’ve picked graduates from schools that have launched solid master’s programs in business analytics with impressive placement stats.
The University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management is one of them. Following graduation from Carlson with a business analytics degree, Tanmayee Waghmare landed a $10M deal for a boutique investment firm through connecting with a client on LinkedIn. “This was a very critical deal in my firm’s portfolio at the time because the client was a very popular brand and to help them in their financial journey meant huge success for us!,” says Waghmare.
She wasn’t alone in notching successes after earning her master’s in business analytics. NYU Stern’s Borja Ureta received a promotion only three years after earning his master’s in business analytics. He now lectures university students on social media analytics. For UCLA Anderson’s Leah Greenberg Kelly, she credits her biggest accomplishment as developing trust in her intuition. She says that learning to follow her curiosity and instincts, even when her career path has felt uncertain, has provided the greatest personal and professional rewards. And MIT Sloan School of Management’s Abby Garett is progressing through healthcare as operations insights manager at Pfizer. Here, she manages the development of a dashboard which provides visibility into the shipment and production of the COVID vaccine to the Pfizer CEO and C-suite.
WHY BUSINESS ANALYTICS?
While an MBA is a traditional route many business professionals take following their undergraduate degree, these grads are happy to have gained a more specialized education to set themselves apart in the workforce.
Seeing the emerging need to be able to process and analyze data, Pol Borrellas i Martín chose Esade’s Master’s in Business Analytics over an MBA to gain technical skills in machine learning, cloud computing, and ultimately differentiate himself in a competitive market.
“The climate crisis, the increasing automation of jobs and inequality are global challenges that require the involvement of everyone, business leaders included, to ensure that no one is left behind and that progress translates into higher welfare for society,” he says. “Being able to reflect and debate about these and other pressing topics with talented and socially-conscious classmates and professors made a difference to me.”
‘BUSINESS ANALYTICS IS THE PERFECT INTERDISCIPLINARY DOMAIN’
Purdue University Krannert School of Business’ Maharshi Dutta wanted to pursue business analytics in order to become a specialist rather than a generalist in the technology field. Similarly, UCLA Anderson School of Management’s Leah Greenberg Kelly wanted to dive deeper into new ways to leverage the power of data to solve organizational challenges and reveal trends. Others felt the pull to a master’s because of passion for the field. That was the case for USC Marshall School of Business alumna Jolee Zhao.
“Business analytics is the perfect interdisciplinary domain that integrates multiple areas of my interest: Business, statistics, computer programming, and problem-solving,” says Zhao.
Carnegie Mellon’s Douglas Levine was drawn to the business analytics at the Tepper School of Business due to the way the course content was designed around solving real business problems.“Given the focus that many companies have on better utilizing big data for strategy decisions, I wanted to gain insight into these methods both to apply them myself and effectively manage analysts in the future,” he says. “We utilized real data from companies and were pushed to analyze it to determine how the company could best accomplish their objectives based on the empirical evidence. As a result, it was easy to draw parallels to my job, allowing me to bring examples from work into the classroom to discuss or take learnings from class and immediately apply them at work.”