Management analysts are valued by organizations of all sizes and across all industries for their insights and recommendations on operating businesses more efficiently. Also known as management consultants, these professionals seek to improve profitability by reducing expenses and increasing revenue.
Using a variety of methods, management analysts review the obstacles and challenges facing a company. They may interview various personnel, and collect and analyze appropriate data. Often, they will utilize mathematical models and digital technology to generate reports on trends and projections. Management analysts develop solutions to problems, including new processes, systems and procedures, and may also recommend organizational or operational changes. They often demonstrate their findings and recommendations through formal presentations to managers and company executives.
Most management analysts work as independent consultants, rather than for specific firms, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). They may be self-employed or work for larger consulting companies. Some specialize in certain operational areas, such as human resources or distribution, or in certain industries, such as healthcare or manufacturing.
Job Outlook and Salary Range for Management Analysts
There were more than 637,000 management analysts employed nationwide in 2016, the BLS reported. The median annual wage for those professionals was $81,330 in May 2016, with the top 10% earning more than $149,720.
The BLS reports that employment of management analysts is expected to grow by 14% from 2014 to 2024, which is much faster than the average growth rate projected for all occupations over the same period. Growth will occur as organizations continue to seek ways to reduce costs and improve productivity.
In addition, the BLS states that the growth of international business, with more U.S. firms expanding into foreign markets, will spur demand for management analysts. Similarly, more local, state and federal government agencies are likely to seek management analysts to help with reducing expenses and improving efficiency, which will contribute to job growth.
Education and Training for Management Analysts
Most employers hiring management analysts will require applicants to have at least a bachelor’s degree in business, economics, accounting, marketing or another discipline related to the industry. Some prefer candidates with a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) or a related field, the BLS reported. Applicants with related work experience may also have an advantage when competing for management analyst positions.
Certain employers require or prefer candidates who have attained industry certifications, such as the Certified Management Consultant (CMC) designation offered by the Institute of Management Consultants USA. Qualifying for certification typically requires a minimum level of education and experience, along with client reviews and the successful completion of an exam.
Additional attributes sought by employers for management analysts may include strong written and oral communication skills, as well as problem-solving, interpersonal and analytical skills. The BLS reports that aspiring management analysts should be self-confident in order to deal with clients and have good time-management skills given the tight deadlines typical in the profession. Being self-reliant should also help candidates cope with the pressure and independent nature of this career.