Business intelligence analysts attending a team meeting.

Business Intelligence Analyst Salary: A Rewarding Career


Organizations everywhere continue to face mounting challenges in tracking and analyzing ever-growing amounts of data, commonly referred to as big data. The 2018 Big Data Executive Survey reported 97.2% of organizations are investing in data analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) to improve business decision making. For this and other reasons, the role of business intelligence analysts is becoming increasingly important.

Business intelligence analysts analyze large volumes of data to identify patterns, opportunities, and issues. Conclusions drawn from this analysis help provide organizational solutions and strategic direction. Business intelligence analysts play a critical role in a variety of industries, including finance and insurance corporations, and technical and scientific service companies.

For those aspiring business intelligence analysts who have a passion for international relations and diplomacy, many career paths are available. These include employment with global public, private, military, or nonprofit organizations. In these positions, business intelligence analysts apply problem-solving skills to provide diplomatic solutions for international issues and conflicts.

What Does a Business Intelligence Analyst Do?

Although daily accountabilities vary by position, a business intelligence analyst generally executes the following.

  • Creates programs and processes for compiling and analyzing data
  • Conducts data analysis and develops reports based on the results
  • Identifies and proposes business intelligence projects and determines what types of data are valuable
  • Works closely with leadership and business partners to solve problems and identify solutions based on data analysis findings

Professionals in the field must have technical expertise in data management and analytics to transform data into valuable information. In addition, data analysts require soft business skills. These include critical thinking and a broad understanding of business strategy and operations to provide thoughtful insight into what information is valuable to an organization. Another skill essential to success is written and verbal communication to articulate data analysis results in written and oral presentations.

Required Skills for Business Intelligence Analysts

Diplomacy is at the core of the business intelligence analyst profession. As such, it’s essential for business intelligence analysts to have skills that reflect strong diplomatic qualities.

For instance, strong interpersonal and communication skills are essential to not only communicate analysis-driven findings and recommendations with colleagues, but to collaborate with an international workforce or client base. Strong leadership competencies are also fundamental, as this can enable business intelligence analysts to help organizations or groups strive toward recommended data-driven goals. Those in the role must also have strong problem-solving and critical-thinking skills.

Because business data analysts deal with data from a wide range of sources, they must possess strong technical skills to optimize their data collection and their analytical abilities to properly interpret and apply crucial data.

The Steps to Become a Business Intelligence Analyst

A bachelor’s degree is commonly required to pursue a role as a business intelligence analyst. However, earning an advanced degree may not only help deepen key skill sets, but potentially enable candidates to stand out in the job market.

It’s also important to gain several years of work experience. The type of experience can often correlate with a particular field. For instance, government positions may require a business intelligence analyst to have years of experience working in a government agency. A business in the private sector, such as finance, may seek a business intelligence analyst who has a financial background.

What Is the Business Intelligence Analyst Salary Range?

The compensation website PayScale places the median annual business intelligence analysts salary at around $68,900. Those in the top 10% earn about $95,000, and those in the bottom 10% earn approximately $50,000. Compensation fluctuates greatly based on experience, training, qualifications, and job location.

For entry-level business intelligence analysts, the median annual salary is about $59,100, according to PayScale. In contrast, PayScale indicates more experienced business intelligence analysts with between 10 and 19 years of experience may earn a total compensation of around $83,300.

When it comes to location, business intelligence analysts in San Francisco earn about 29% more than the national average. Seattle is another location that provides higher compensation than the national average. The lowest salaries for business intelligence analysts are found in Chicago and Dallas.

Future Demand for Business Intelligence Analysts

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, (BLS) projects the demand for management analyst roles, which are similar to business analyst roles, will increase by 11% from 2019 to 2029. This is much higher than the average growth of 4% for all occupations.

The BLS also reports that despite a strong outlook for the management analyst field, professionals should be prepared for intense job competition. For this reason, individuals who are pursuing this career should consider obtaining a graduate degree or other specialized training to stand out from their competitors.

Explore a Master of Arts in Diplomacy

Are you interested in a career as a business intelligence analyst? Do you want to develop specialized knowledge to stand out from your competition? Learn about Norwich University’s online Master of Arts in Diplomacy program. Discover how its curriculum helps advance a career as a business intelligence analyst with global responsibilities.

Students in the program are empowered to enhance their political, governmental, or business expertise with a broad knowledge of international relations. With four concentrations, the program provides students the opportunity to tailor their education to meet individual career goals.

The International Conflict Management concentration includes courses such as International Security and Military Intervention and Conflict Management to prepare students for careers with a military agency. While the International Commerce concentration includes courses in Global Corporate Diplomacy and Global Commerce to support a career path with a global corporate organization. The other two concentrations are Cyber Diplomacy, and International Terrorism, which deepen knowledge in two crucial areas in today’s world.

Norwich University is the nation’s oldest private military college and has maintained a leadership position in education since 1819. The university’s innovative online programs deliver curricula that are relevant and practical, providing graduates with the skills to make an impact in their workplaces, in communities, and throughout the world.


Recommended Readings

8 Books for Students Obtaining a Master of Arts in Diplomacy
An Introduction to America’s Foreign Policy
The Increasing Need for Cyber Diplomacy


NewVantage Partners Release Annua Big Data Executive Survey for 2018, Business Wire
What Is a Business Intelligence Analyst? A Role for Driving Business Value With Data, CIO
Five Business Intelligence Predictions For 2019, Forbes
Business Intelligence Analyst Skills & Main Duties, BusinessPhrases
Average Business Intelligence (BI) Analyst Salary, PayScale
Average Entry-Level Business Intelligence (BI) Analyst Salary, PayScale
Management Analysts, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Foreign Affairs Careers, Houston Chronicle

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