What Can You Do With a Business Administration Degree?

Growth Trends for Related Jobs

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Every Industry Needs MBA Graduates

A degree in business administration prepares you for a wide variety of careers in nearly any industry. Degree programs are available on many campuses nationwide. You can find plenty of online degree options, too, which offer flexibility if you’re raising a family. Career opportunities are accessible at the bachelor’s degree level, but greater responsibility and higher pay are often associated with specialization and a master’s degree.

Where Do Business Administration Majors Work?

If you’ve got a degree in business administration, potential employers include:

  • Banks and other financial institutions
  • Government agencies
  • Health care industry
  • Hospitality organizations
  • Insurance companies
  • Nonprofit agencies
  • Real estate brokerages
  • Sales organizations
  • Service companies

Bachelor’s Degree Curriculum

As an undergraduate majoring in business administration, you’ll take courses in accounting, business management, finance, international business, marketing and sales. Most degree programs offer an opportunity to study any of these disciplines in greater depth in upper-division classes. Many schools also offer the opportunity for internships, which is helpful for gaining direct work experience that can give you an edge in the job market after graduation.

Master’s Degree Curriculum

Students who go on to earn a master’s in Business Administration, or MBA, often have a bachelor’s degree in business, though it’s not a strict requirement. Master’s programs attract students from a variety of undergraduate programs; students without a business degree, however, may need to fulfill some prerequisite requirements.

Admissions to top programs are very competitive. Some programs admit only students who have full-time work experience. All applicants must pass the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT), an exam that measures reading and writing abilities along with skills in quantitative analysis and critical thinking.

The course of study for a master’s program is similar to that offered at the undergraduate level, but, as expected, in greater depth. Students choose an area of specialization, such as finance or marketing. Internships are strongly encouraged.

Job Titles and Salaries

  • Accountants work in nearly every industry, managing financial records and ensuring that taxes are paid. Job growth is expected to be about 10 percent over the next decade. The average annual salary is $76,630.
  • Commercial loan officers handle loans for businesses. Job growth should remain strong, with average salaries around $76,260.
  • City managers are chief executive officers of municipalities, with a variety of duties, including budgeting and policy-making. Salaries average $194,350 annually.
  • Human resources managers serve as liaisons between management and employees. They oversee recruitment and hiring and may assist executives with strategic planning and policy-making. Job opportunities are expected to remain steady. Human resources managers make an average of $120,210 a year.
  • Sales managers oversee sales representatives and may be in charge of training programs and the resolution of customer disputes. Job growth is projected to be about 7 percent annually for the next decade, which is average compared to the growth of all other occupations. The average salary for a sales manager is $135,090 annually.

Technology Can Give You an Edge

Salaries and job outlook vary by industry and job title. At one time, having an MBA virtually guaranteed employment in a top job, but the market has grown more competitive in recent years. Advances in technology play an important part in today’s business environment. Knowledge and experience with computers and software can give you an edge in the job market.