Business Analytics is the study of data through statistical and operations analysis, the formation of predictive models, application of optimization techniques and the communication of these results to customers, business partners and decision makers. Business analytics ranges from collecting, organizing and manipulating the data to efficiently communicating information and results. Therefore, it is supported by three major components: descriptive analytics, predictive analytics, and prescriptive analytics.
This major will apply descriptive, predictive and prescriptive analytics to transform data into actionable information. Course topics covered includes: advanced statistics, data visualization, time series analysis, forecasting, optimization simulation, decision analysis, database analysis, competitive intelligence and econometrics.
Courses are housed under the Decision Sciences-Information Management (DSIM) prefix.
Opportunities for business analysts have exploded as major organizations have adopted data driven and technology focused tactics and strategies. The role of the business analyst is to collect, aggregate, analyze, and present data to figure out how to leverage it so that his or her organization can make better decisions and operate more efficiently and effectively. The Harvard Business Review calls the position of business analyst or data scientist the "sexiest job of the 21st century." Business-analyst jobs are predicted to increase by 22 percent by 2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Examples of business analytics jobs include: BA Strategy Consultants, Business Intelligence and Performance Management Consultants, Advanced Analytics and Optimization Consultants, Enterprise Information and Management Consultants, Enterprise Content Management Consultants, among others.