Globalisation, automation and rapidly changing needs mean the future of employment will probably look very different to now. In fact, many current careers won’t exist in the next 10 to 20 years. So, it’s critical that students ask the important question: ‘Will my chosen study path lead to strong job opportunities after graduation and beyond?’

In this series, we’re exploring a range of occupations forecast to have strong employment prospects in the future. Some careers in the tech industry are quickly emerging. Plus, there are other existing careers that will also have an important place in the employment opportunities of tomorrow.

Today, we’re looking at business analytics – a field of science that uses data analytics tools and techniques to improve the future success and growth of any business.

WHY ANALYSE?

The world of business is a giant one, and there are many different ways to enter it. Some people prefer to be on the front line, dealing with clients and customers directly. Others find their services are best used behind the scenes in operations. There are also those whose minds work in a very analytical way, taking figures and deciphering what they mean so that they can be applied to a broad range of processes.

You have probably watched plenty of movies about those who analyse the mind; when it comes to analysing business data, it works in much the same way. Analytics is a vital part of any business. It allows businesses to reach their performance goals and identify areas of strength and weakness, and can be applied to any aspect of a business’ structure.

WHAT OPPORTUNITIES ARE AVAILABLE?

Whether it’s a smaller independent business or a large multinational corporation, the world of politics or the world of entertainment, business analytics is very flexible. This is one of the great benefits of studying this field, says Dr Kok-Leong Ong from the La Trobe Business School, who began his career in computer science over 15 years ago.

As the industry around him shifted and changed, so did he. The basics of business and data analytics have allowed Dr Ong to go in multiple directions, including a distinguished academic career that has seen him help develop the curriculum for the Master of Data Science, the Master of Cybersecurity (Computer Science), and a brand new course, the Master of Sports Analytics.

I love seeing the power of numbers and how they can support or discredit a business claim,” he says. “I also love that more and more companies understand the importance of business analytics, which means increasing demand for analysts and data scientists.”

The world is constantly changing, but businesses will always need people to analyse data to improve profits, models and the evolution of a business’ workforce. The directions a business analytics or data analytics graduate can take their career are far too numerous to count.

HOW BUSINESS ANALYSTS FIT INTO THE WORLD

A degree in business analytics can be as good as striking oil, according to La Trobe University postgraduate student Mahesh Krishnan. Thanks to the abundance of technology in all of our lives, there are plenty of outlets where data can be used, as well as plenty of opportunities for graduates to get into the field.

If you are even considering whether this is the role for you, then it probably is. If you have ever read a news article and found yourself wanting to take the stats and figures and find out how the journalist reached their conclusion, then you are already doing business and data analysis. If you have been at work – like Mahesh was in his home of India – and found yourself being asked what any given information means, then you are already doing business and data analysis. It just makes sense to take this skill and apply it to the bigger picture, and by studying a Master of Business Analytics, you’ll find your natural skills will be in even greater demand.

“My work at my previous employer in India involved a lot of data. This led me to analysing customer information, which helped me realise that I had a natural sense for understanding hidden patterns in data and deriving insights that would help businesses drive growth,” says Mahesh. “I found this interesting and decided to do a course that would help me fortify my analytical skills by learning different analysis methods.”

STUDY AT LA TROBE UNIVERSITY

To gain entry into La Trobe University’s Master of Business Analytics course, you’ll need to have completed a Bachelor degree in any discipline.

Studying at La Trobe University offers students from all around the world a unique entry point into the industry. With its highly experienced teaching faculty and industry and practice-focused curriculum backed by major analytics vendors, La Trobe University’s Master of Business Analytics sets you up for employment no matter the field you want to go into. Mahesh was able to undertake internships with the Victorian State Government, ME Bank in Melbourne and Moreland City Council, and has since secured a full-time role as an associate consultant with a leading data analytics firm.

A degree from La Trobe University is an important part of being offered work in Australia, but graduating from the University’s two-year course can also grant you access to international positions. Business/data analysis is a global industry that’s in high demand all over the world. Graduates have found roles as data scientists, supply chain analysts, data engineers, market research analysts, business intelligence developers, and much more.

As well as industry-focused learning, highly qualified teaching staff and real-world experience, La Trobe University offers flexible study options both at the city campus and via live-streaming. For more information on La Trobe University’s Master of Business Analytics course, head to the University’s website.