Business intelligence analysts use data to develop financial and market information for their employers and clients, and help organizations make better decisions. They mine a company's computer data, look at its competitors’ data and at industry trends to develop a picture of how the company is performing, how it can improve, and where it could reduce costs. They also advise clients on markets for future product development or to improve sales of current products. Business intelligence analysts often develop their own methods to identify data patterns and trends. They design databases and spreadsheets to store their data and communicate information, and may keep a library of past work to use as a model for future projects. Business intelligence analysts need strong critical thinking skills, persistence, and flexibility when circumstances and resources change. They work closely with a wide variety of people, so communication and collaboration skills are also important. Most business intelligence analysts work longer than 40 hours per week, spending most of their time in the office. Most positions require a bachelor’s degree, although many in the field have a master’s degree as well.
What they do:
Produce financial and market intelligence by querying data repositories and generating periodic reports. Devise methods for identifying data patterns and trends in available information sources.
On the job, you would:
Analyze competitive market strategies through analysis of related product, market, or share trends.
Synthesize current business intelligence or trend data to support recommendations for action.
Communicate with customers, competitors, suppliers, professional organizations, or others to stay abreast of industry or business trends.
Arts and Humanities
sales and marketing
Math and Science
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
Engineering and Technology
computers and electronics
thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
People and Technology Systems
thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one
figuring out how a system should work and how changes in the future will affect it
noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it
read and understand what is written
communicate by speaking
Ideas and Logic
use rules to solve problems
make general rules or come up with answers from lots of detailed information
choose the right type of math to solve a problem
add, subtract, multiply, or divide
People interested in this work like activities that include ideas, thinking, and figuring things out.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
You might use software like this on the job:
Development environment software
Microsoft Visual Basic
Web platform development software
Data base user interface and query software
bachelor's degree or master's degree usually needed
New job opportunities are very likely in the future.
You might like a career in one of these industries: