Whether you pursue a business major because you’re genuinely interested in it, you think it’ll make you money, or you believe it will open doors for you in your career and allow you the flexibility to move around between positions, you’d have made a sound choice.
Business degrees can do all of the above and open many opportunities for graduates.
Business majors are in demand from employers in a variety of different industries and roles. Focus areas of a business degree can impact the jobs available to graduates or the direction in which they specialize. Still, in general, the skills taught in a business degree are valuable to employers.
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If you are considering a business major, busy with one, recently graduated, or the parent of a child thinking about studying business, we’ve put together an extensive but not exhaustive list of jobs that business majors can go into.
Some have a more direct correlation, while others are less obviously related but use some of the transferable skills learned in a business degree.
Types of Jobs for Business Majors
Included are some jobs that require further studies or specialist certifications, but having a business major can open doors and be a gateway qualification to the listed job.
A business degree can be applied to almost any industry or sector, so to learn in which area to apply the business majors, internships and work experience are suggested.
Almost every company needs business professionals to help them run their operations, no matter which market they function in. Many of the skills learned in a business degree are applicable to many different roles.
Most people find a niche they enjoy and develop their business skills in a particular direction, specializing in an area of focus for their careers.
In addition to working in a corporate environment, business majors can also work in not-for-profit organizations or social enterprises, as they too need the expertise to run finances, marketing, and other operations. Skills learned in a business degree are widely recognized as valuable and their holders enterprising and can therefore be used in many roles.
Human resources positions are centered around handling the people function in organizations. Positions such as “Talent specialist” or “Head of People” also refer to HR functions. They handle the recruiting, screening, and interviewing of candidates, as well as employees internally.
They help employees with benefits, salary negotiations, and communication between team members and management. Typically they would also help to resolve any internal issues or disputes around an employee’s role or between employees and the company. Human resources staff should have a strong understanding of business policies and guidelines to ensure that the company operates both effectively and safely.
In addition to this, they should also have an excellent working knowledge of local government policy and labor rights, including minimum wages, working hours, etc. They should have a genuine interest in people and problem-solving.
Accountants review and maintain the financial operations of a company. This includes records and data of finances, both current and past, and they also help plan and budget for the future. Not only does the role include analyzing financial data, but also preparing reports on budgeting that are used by management and executives in their planning and strategizing.
Accounts receivable and payable are also usually managed by accountants. This is an analytical job that requires close attention to detail and excellent organizational skills. There are different types of an accountant, but further qualifications are required to become a certified public accountant.
Lucrative for many, with the opportunity to make a lot of money, investment bankers help individuals or companies to manage their portfolios. Helping businesses to realize how they could reduce their expenses and where they could raise money, they need to be able to identify market trends to make informed investment decisions.
Many investment bankers sell bonds and issue stocks too. Many companies require an MBA on top of a business major to hire investment bankers. There are other forms of banking, or finance roles, such as a private banker, that are variations of this, and also possible with a business major background.
Also known as financial planners, financial advisors help individuals look after and plan their finances. Once they have evaluated salaries and assets, they help develop a long-term financial strategy for their clients. Advising them on reliable investments, current market trends, estate planning, debt management, and taxes can form part of the job description.
Financial advisors can also be called client relationship managers and either be self-employed and work as an independent consultant or work for an advisory company that brings clients to the advisors.
Using data analytics to prepare reports for managers and executives is the primary function of this role. The reports are then used to inform strategic level decision-making and develop strategies to increase the sales of a product. Often working with the marketing and sales team to get a better overall understanding of trends, plans, and patterns, research analysts are required in several industries.
By helping companies identify leads and market trends and then develop financial strategies, business development roles work with internal teams and clients to ensure customer satisfaction. By having a solid understanding of both the industry and the product or service, they can help with a company’s growth and success. The role can include an element of sales but varies greatly between companies and industries.
As most companies want to keep growing and make this an active priority, business development positions are common in a number of industries.
By reviewing applications and evaluating financial data, loan officers determine whether or not a business or individual should be granted a loan based on their capacity to pay it back.
Also, working with applicants to guide them through the rules and regulations around borrowing capital, many loan officers work in commercial or real estate areas and are employed by banks or financial institutions.
Using evaluation skills and analytical methods, business analysts provide a number of services within companies. Working with data, business analysts analyze opportunities and find ways to improve company processes. Many work with a team to develop IT solutions for both their company and for clients.
It is essential that people in this role have a solid understanding of data but also possess bigger picture thinking to imagine how this data and the company fit into larger systems and how those can be improved. They also need to possess good communication skills to liaise with various different parties, both internally and externally.
Responsible for the overall accounting functions of their companies, financial controllers oversee accountants, supervising employees by managing their work, assigning projects, and offering guidance where needed. Many large companies need financial controllers, and these individuals require in-depth knowledge of both the companies’ finances but also of tax laws and other applicable financial regulations.
Reviewing a product or service’s functionality, product managers determine whether it can be improved or changed.
Requiring a good understanding of the business, the market, and the customer’s requirements, product managers also need to work with multiple teams to ensure the success of a product or service. Technology companies require a large number of product managers, but they are found in many industries.
Following a bachelor’s degree, it is important to note that becoming an actuary requires external and additional exams and certifications that can take four to five years. Having said this, there is a large earning potential in this role, so the years of studying tend to pay off financially. Helping companies to assess and analyze financial risks, this role requires an aptitude for mathematics.
Suggesting policies to minimize risks, or mitigate specific risks, better understand financial data and create projections, many actuaries are employed by insurance companies.
One of the oldest and most important functions of any business involves sales executives who help drive growth by selling the products or services of a company to customers. Domestic or international sales to individuals, businesses, or governments all involve a similar but different skill set.
Maintaining good relationships with existing clients, as well as developing relationships with new clients to generate more business and retaining customers who are thinking about leaving, are all key aspects of a sales executive’s job. Sales fall into two main categories that have different responsibilities, namely business to business sales (B2B) or business to customer sales (B2C).
Driving business profitability by promoting products and services through coordinated marketing campaigns is the aim of marketing executives. Developing and contributing to marketing campaigns, whether local, regional, or global, involves a number of steps and functions.
These include planning, advertising, public relations, event organization, research, sponsorship, product development, and distribution. Working in public or private sectors, in many different industries, the role of a marketing executive can vary greatly, depending on the nature of the organization and whether a product or service is being sold.
Logistics or distribution manager
Responsible for getting goods to the right place at the right time, the role involves organizing the storage and distribution of goods. Organizing products to be delivered to the correct place at a good cost involves transportation, stock control, warehousing, and monitoring of the flow of goods.
It is important to have a good understanding of the entire supply chain in order to properly manage the logistics and coordinate many moving parts.
Supply chain manager
Responsible for the movement of goods from suppliers and manufacturers to the customer, supply chain managers oversee the production flow, from the purchase of the raw materials to delivery of the final product. There are also various jobs within the supply chain that might only manage parts of the process.
The quantity and timing of the products produced, as well as the storage of these products and moving them between distribution centers and stores, is all the domain of the supply chain manager. Forecasting trends, managing inventories and being on top of things in general, thinking ahead, and problem-solving on the go are critical aspects of the position.
Analyzing how organizational systems influence products and services in a firm is what working in operations is centered around. Making sure that companies are meeting the demand of customers by effectively managing processes helps to maintain and improve profitability for businesses.
Overseeing logistics, supply chain, quality control, and purchasing to make sure that everything is running not just as it should but as best as it could, is what makes for a great operations analyst or manager. While quantitative skills are useful, so are teamwork, and leadership, as this role involves a lot of work with other employees.
For those who are analytical, mathematical, curious, and data-driven, this is the perfect job. From finance to manufacturing, government to pharmaceuticals, this job is in demand across all industries and will continue to be as more processes become digitalized, and data is generated across all areas of the manufacturing and sales processes.
The role focuses not only on understanding the data but being able to develop insights that are relevant and communicating them to those who would benefit from such knowledge.
Buying and selling stocks, shares, and other securities on behalf of both private individuals and commercial clients, stockbrokers are paid a fee or commission from their stock exchange or over-the-counter activities. Stockbrokers act as an intermediary between their clients and the stock exchange, requiring a solid understanding of market trends. Expected to manage existing clients and to develop new business, the role can be focused at either an institutional or retail (individual) level.
Depending on the level of control clients want (usually based on their knowledge of the stock market), stockbrokers can play one of three roles; discretionary (managing all investment decisions on the client’s behalf), advisory (advising the client but acting only on their orders), and execution-only (not offering any advice and acting only on the orders of a client).
With the primary responsibility of deciding whether applications for insurance cover should be accepted or not and what exactly the terms and conditions of that acceptance are, this is a crucial role for insurance companies.
Assessing risk and working closely with actuaries, brokers, and other functions, insurance underwriters need to find the balance between attracting and retaining customers through attractive premiums and also being able to cover losses from potential claims. Underwriters typically specialize in one type of insurance – general, life, commercial, or reinsurance.
Advising organizations on how to solve issues become more efficient and more profitable is the domain of a management consultant. Often starting out as generalists and then specializing in one industry, this role usually involves a lot of travel and time spent with clients in their offices, getting to know their needs.
They maximize business performance by providing advice and expertise, often in specialist areas in which the business is lacking. Finding business solutions and suggesting business recommendations on a strategic, operational, structural, or management level is the name of the game.
Social media manager
Particularly if the business major has focused on marketing and communications, a social media manager adds to this a tech-savvy aspect. Coordinating their employer’s presence on social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram are at the center of this role.
This enhances the business activity and develops brand identity through devising strategic plans, developing content, and measuring the impact of online campaigns. Usually falling within the marketing division of a company, that is essentially what this role is, though focused only on social media marketing.
College admissions representative
For business majors who want to work in education or a college environment but aren’t necessarily attracted by a teaching post, this is perfect.
Admissions staff use their communications, presentation, and negotiation skills to reach out to prospective students, develop marketing plans to strategically promote specific colleges, and encourage applications. This is similar to a sales role for an educational institution, and love of communications, marketing, a people is a necessity.
Academia (business teacher)
As with most things, if you learn it somewhere, you’ll have the opportunity to teach it somewhere. Becoming a professor in business or a teacher in business subjects is excellent for those who don’t want to work full time in the business world.
A career in education, either by offering a course at a college or university or by teaching a class at high school, can be very rewarding in influencing young people’s decisions and interests in life. The presentation, communication, and leadership skills learned during a business major can be well-utilized in a teaching position.
Managing behind-the-scenes operations of a hospital, doctor’s practice, or healthcare facility, your job is to keep things running safely and efficiently. The role can include a range of tasks, from training and recruiting hospital staff, managing digital and physical healthcare records, creating schedules for healthcare providers, and communicating with health insurance representatives.
For those who are interested in the healthcare sector but have a business rather than a biological background and pay close attention to detail, this can be a really interesting position.
Business reporter or writer
Already having a keen interest in the financial and business sectors, the role of a business journalist is to convey issues and insights in these sectors to a broader audience. Important developments, news, and interest articles can be written and published either in print or online, depending on the medium through which the journalist works.
Being either self-employed and writing on a freelance basis or working for a print or digital publication are the two options for pursuing this career. Being skilled in the analysis will help to write detailed articles in an engaging and relevant manner.
Market research analyst
Studying the marketplace, the market researcher determines the company’s position versus that of competitors. Researching products and services and trends in the marketplace, this is a customer-centric position, with the aim of researching how better to position the company in the market to best serve their target audience.
This involves monitoring and predicting evolving sales trends, researching consumers, competitors, and products, developing new ways to gather valuable data and communicating actionable insights to the right groups of people in such a way that they will understand it clearly. Taking raw data and using it to tell a story, is a suitable position for those who are both analytical and creative.
In charge of resources, workflows, and people, project managers constantly need to have their finger on the pulse with all elements of their project, which requires excellent communication skills. Keeping track of work to be completed, delegating tasks to others, and then keeping track of them is key, as well as identifying any potential risks and foreseeing problems that may arise.
As the manager of a project, it is the project manager’s duty to ensure that a project happens as specified, within a particular timeframe and budget too, and often involves reporting to senior management and/or clients as well.
Essentially working in business development and sales for a non-profit organization, fundraisers require the sales, marketing, and skills of persuasion talents learned in a business major. For those wanting to work in business but not necessarily in the corporate world, this offers an opportunity to use a business degree in a context or for a cause about which you are passionate.
With the primary aim of raising money through events, sponsorship, and donations, this position is about relationship building, networking, and selling your cause. Passion and motivation for the cause are essential.
With a background in business before sitting the LSAT, attorneys with an interest in business can have a career in corporate or business law, and it serves as a solid foundation for this.
Working in areas of law that range from securities, bankruptcy, contracts, mergers and acquisitions, incorporations, and business successions, this type of law has a wide scope for those genuinely interested in the business world.
The information officer is primarily responsible for managing and maintaining information catalogs, databases, and web resources. By ensuring that information is not only safe and secure but easily accessible to the right people at the right time, they facilitate the dissemination and storage of knowledge within organizations. Preparing correspondence and reports, collecting and recording data, and answering questions about the company’s products and services are just some of the duties that information officers have.
For business majors who prefer not to be client-facing but are organized, analytical, and have both great attention to detail and a good understanding of the requirements of information in an organization, this is a great career choice.
Creating and maintaining forecast models for products is central to the work of a demand planner. Ensuring that stores all have enough stock at the right time of the right products and determining financial models to plan and budget for the purchase of stock by businesses helps companies to plan properly, both financially and in terms of physical stock, to maximize profits and minimize excess.
Using data from sales, marketing, finance, and other sources, this is an analytical role that also requires collaboration and communication with other teams.
This role is focused on being the liaison between companies and their customers. By addressing customers’ needs and issues quickly and effectively, the account manager can maintain a strong relationship between the company and its clients.
Clients, in this case, are usually other businesses, and one account manager would typically work on a number of smaller accounts or fewer larger ones. Account managers can also be responsible for doing some sales and business development to upsell or get new clients on board too.
With so many choices, and more not listed, for careers that business majors can go into, it is no wonder it is such a popular choice of degree the world over. The tricky part isn’t choosing what to study, but rather, what to do with the degree post studying!
The Balance Careers: Best Jobs for Graduates With a Business Degree
Prospects.ac.uk: Business management
WikiJob: Top 10 Jobs for Business Majors
The Balance Careers: Best Jobs for Graduates With a Business Degree