For career changers and current business leaders alike, the field of Business Intelligence (BI) offers many growing opportunities across several industry sectors. This growing field combines technical acumen with sound business practices to develop cutting-edge strategies to drive organizational growth. For those interested in a career as a BI professional, there are several paths to consider.
From designing and planning projects to developing software, there are a wide range of skills that transfer easily into the Business Intelligence field. Some BI professionals focus on deploying, maintaining and supporting software products, some analyze information to develop business insights and others concentrate on the people side of the job to develop training programs for BI leaders.
One of the most attractive attributes of a BI role is that there are numerous opportunities available for a breadth of skilled professionals. BI professionals work as key members of a dedicated team that looks at and presents data in fresh new ways. They make suggestions and meet with other teams to clarify business goals and suggest innovative ways to drive more effective growth.
Careers within the BI field are rapidly evolving. Currently, these are three of the most popular areas:
This area of BI involves a high level of commitment and a comprehensive range of skills. Consulting may include travel and non-conventional hours, but there is generally a high payoff in terms of career advancement and monetary compensation.
A number of industry-specific jobs exist for BI professionals who want to work with a particular type of company or type of data. Some BI professionals work to develop special software for applications in a particular industry or work on teams to size up the competition and suggest data-driven ways to help move an organization past industry competitors.
This is a great area to gain experience using a limited type of data and specific applications across a particular business setting. BI professionals in these settings may also be involved in training, tailoring software products to reflect organizational needs and preparing a variety of reports and presentations about pertinent data.
Researching openings in Business Intelligence will reveal many different job titles for professionals looking to enter this field. Popular job titles demonstrate how diverse this field is and include:
An advantage to the BI field is that there are a variety of ways to enter into it and even more ways to grow once employed. For professionals with strong business knowledge and great people skills, the role of a BI project manager may be of particular interest. For those BI professionals who already have sound software development skills and a vast array of knowledge in a particular industry, a BI consultant job may be a perfect fit. BI combines IT acumen with sound business principles which are integrated into creative business solutions. As a result, top jobs generally require a bachelor's degree or higher for sustainable advancement potential.
No matter which career path an aspiring BI professional chooses, online courses can help develop the skills needed to add BI credentials to a résumé. Taught by industry leaders, online courses provide access to cutting-edge resources while also offering the opportunity to grow and network with other goal-minded professionals.
As more companies begin to embrace the potential of using data to drive business expansion, the field of Business Intelligence will continue to evolve and respond to industry needs. Securing a foothold in this lucrative and expanding career path is a great way to keep an IT or business career relevant to today’s growing need for skilled professionals.