An operations analyst assesses business operations. They analyze company policies, processes, resources, and procedures to ensure the business or organization follows regulations. If you are steering your career towards becoming an acclaimed operations analyst, your first step should be to prepare an outstanding resume. In the following sections, we will guide you to make one that helps you catch the attention of recruiters.
Let’s begin with the three different resume formats.
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Job Duties of an Operations Analyst
The rationale of hiring an operations analyst for an organization is to bring about efficiency in business operations. They implement new changes to procedures and processes after a thorough analysis of current business scenarios.
An operations analyst has the following responsibilities:
Analyzing business operations such as financing, accounting, investments, manufacturing, sales, marketing, services, and research and development.
Ensuring compliance with company policies such as the employee code of conduct, workplace health and safety policy, recruitment policy, and anti-discrimination policy.
Measuring performance and identifying industry trends.
Examining project requirements and scope through workflow charts and diagrams.
Developing improved solutions to produce profitable results.
Testing workflows and identifying any defects.
Maintaining operation and security integrity.
Teaming up with senior-level management to make decisions.
Mentoring junior associates in operations analysis and workflow creation.
Preparing supportive documentation for end-users.
Developing timely reports of business performance.
Operations Analyst Median Salaries
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, a primary fact-finding agency that provides information on the median salary of employees from all domains, the average pay of an operations analyst is $86,200 per year as of May 2020. The compensation amount may differ based on the performance and work experience of the employee.
Top Skills for Operations Analyst
As an operations analyst, your primary duty is to revamp a company’s operations and planning process to improve profitability, efficiency, and productivity. The analyst must look at substantial amounts of data and use problem-solving skills to recommend solutions. In short, you’ll be responsible for providing business performance analysis, reporting, and forecasting and for prioritizing your workload to meet the standard timeliness of performance. Different industries require other industry-specific skills depending on whether the work is related to sales, systems, revenue, manufacturing, and invoicing.
The following list is an in-depth look at the skills you’ll need to perform operations analysis:
- Interpersonal and communication skills: Strong interpersonal skills and outstanding written and verbal communication skills with an established ability to effectively communicate with diverse groups are critical. An essential task of this role is to share with all other company stakeholders and provide operations reports. Thus, you must have the ability to write reports, business correspondence, and procedure manuals and effectively engage and lead individual and team discussions to present information and respond to questions from managers, clients, and customers. Indeed, the ability to distill complex thoughts and strategies into simple, actionable recommendations and to articulately debate proposals with cross-functional teams and senior leadership are skills that will set you apart.
- Data analysis and forecasting: A pivotal task is to work with large datasets and use statistical analyses, including identifying, diagnosing, and resolving data issues. And you need proficiency in SQL and Excel or other tools for data analysis. You must also analyze data to identify opportunities and propose actions that’ll increase the effectiveness of operations departments. Analyzing data aims to generate forecasts, such as statistical modeling and analysis of trends and patterns. The purpose of forecasting is to predict what will happen in the future through business intelligence (BI) tools like Power BI, Cognos, SAS, and Tableau. You will also measure, analyze and improve forecast accuracy by continually implementing corrective action and process enhancements. You’ll be involved in particular projects that include research, analysis, and recommendations as they pertain to operations, strategizing, planning, and forecasting.
- Reporting and documentation: Hand in hand with analyzing data and forecasting, you must also develop and provide reports for management. You should expect to gather your analyses and create accounts on your findings, such as tracking processes to prepare reports detailing the quality of departmental actions. Typical requests consist of consolidating information from various sources to provide executive summaries, trends, metrics, etc. In some companies, you will also develop and publish organizational-level operations, operational policies and procedures, orders, letters of instruction, and communications. You might also be responsible for developing and maintaining a collaborative forecasting process that collects and reconciles information from diverse sources into a single unified report.
- Innovation and systemizing: Another essential purpose of an operations analyst is to understand and seek continuous improvements in the use of all operations. Innovating to solve business challenges by working across people, processes, and technology with the ability to think strategically and develop new techniques or approaches is an essential function of the role. You can expect to continually attempt to identify process improvements to the company’s forecasting process, suggest and implement process improvements and implement procedural changes meant to improve performance or efficiency.
- Management skills: The role of an operations analyst may include performing management functions of staff selection and development, such as cross-training within other departments, disciplining and giving performance reviews, even terminating employees if required. Other than team management duties like these, you may be expected to drive alignment internally for product launches, system changes, and policy and process updates. You may have to complete or monitor organizational functions or processes, ensuring that they are completed accurately, on time, and in compliance with established policies and regulations. It may also be your responsibility to control, manage, and schedule organizational resources such as conference rooms and calendars and plan corporate events like staff meetings.
Educational Requirements for Operations Analysts
DegreeThe minimum requirement for an operations analyst is a bachelor’s degree, but some employers prefer a master’s degree. You can choose to major in Business Administration or a field-specific major. For example, if you wish to be an operations analyst in a financial institution, a degree in Finance or Accounting is adequate. Or, if you want to work for a tech company, a degree in Information Systems might be preferred. You may want to consider:
If you plan on going for a master’s degree, consider what you majored in for your bachelor’s and the industry you want to get into so you choose the best option for you. For example, if you’re in the tech industry and already have a bachelor’s in Computer Science, you might want to consider getting an MBA in Business Analytics next. Or, vice versa, if you have a bachelor’s in Business Administration, you may want to consider getting a master’s in a field related to the industry you wish to, such as Finance or Systems Information. Alternatively, if you don’t have any higher education yet, consider enrolling in a dual degree that combines business and the field you want or getting a minor.
- The dual degree from New York University with a BS in Business and MS in Accounting.
- Arizona State University’s bachelor’s degree in Business Statistics.
- The MBA or bachelor’s degree in Business Analytics degree from Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School and the University of Texas at Austin.
Depending on the level of responsibility of the role, you can expect to be required to have between two to five years of experience in a relevant role. But, some highly specialized positions may ask for a combination of education and work experience more significant than 10 years to be considered. As you can see, for operation analyst roles, requirements may vary greatly, so make sure to go after an opening that fits your qualifications.
CertificationsCertifications can help you stand out and endorse your critical skills for the role of an operations analyst. Let’s take a look at some valuable options you can consider.
- Universities and colleges: While colleges and universities offer undergraduate and graduate degrees, they also offer certificate programs. Harvard and MIT offer valid certifications in Business Analytics. Arizona State University provides a relevant certification in Applied Business Data Analytics. These are not the only institutions offering certification programs, nor are these the superior available concentrations. Make sure to shop around for the one that most benefits you and your career interests.
- Online education: Many online educational companies offer courses, specialization, certifications, and even diplomas. These are a good option for anyone interested in learning at their own pace since most allow you to take courses at your own pace. Alison’s many free online courses, diplomas, and certificates on operations management, project management, and data analytics are an excellent place to start browsing. Future Learn also has many relevant courses and certifications tailored to developing the skills you’ll need in the software you’ll be using as an operations analyst, such as Data Analytics Using Python and Data Visualisation in Excel: Charting, Dashboards, and Pivot Tables. Their catalog is enormous, so make sure to check out what else they offer. Coursera is another popular option with many operations analytics and SQL courses, specializations, and certificates.
- Organizations and associations: Some organizations, like the organization for Certified Analytics, offer prestigious certifications to people with some experience in the industry, such as the Certified Analytics Professional (CAP) program. For an entry-level certification, you may consider IIBA’s Entry Certificate in Business Analysis (ECBA) instead.
- Software companies: Due to the nature of any role that requires business intelligence and data analytics, you’ll need to be proficient in software and tools. That’s why companies like Microsoft offer certifications on their software. Depending on your needs, you may want to consider getting certified for Customer Relationship Management (CRM) by taking the Microsoft Certified: Dynamics 365 Fundamentals (CRM) and the Exam DA-100: Analyzing Data with Microsoft Power BI to demonstrate your proficiency using their tools. Domo and Tableau software also have certifications, such as the Certified Domo Professional and Tableau Certification.
Operations Analyst Resume-Writing Tips
In a span of a few seconds, recruiters decide if your resume is good and if you are eligible for the job. You must be mindful in preparing an impressive resume with appropriate information to get shortlisted by recruiters. Here are some valuable tips:
- Use straightforward phrases. An intelligent way of providing clarity about your qualifications to the recruiter is using simple and precise words. The vocabulary you use must be easily understandable, and the recruiters must grasp your information with no trouble.
- Enlist your skills and experience. The use of lists and bullet points enhances the visibility of your information. Using a list of your analytical, technical, and communication skills instead of a paragraph efficiently spotlighting your abilities. Similarly, achievements at previous jobs, details of job roles, degrees, and timespan of work and education are also significant.
- Highlight your innovations. An operations analyst enhances business operations. Make sure to mention your creative and innovative efforts like optimizations, automation, and modeling workflows that you executed in your previous jobs.
- Mention your progressive learning. Learning is an essential aspect of any professional to show development in their work. Hence, pointing out your progress in learning new technologies and upgrades in software versions will make your resume stand out. Give assurance to the recruiters that you would continue your learning and apply the knowledge in their organization.
- Study up on the company. Study the company’s website for which you are applying and gain information on their trends and current implementations. Mentioning your knowledge about the company will be of great benefit since the recruiters expect you to be updated.
Are future goals required to be mentioned in the resume?
If your future goal is to develop expertise in analytics, you can mention it in the objective part of the resume. Don’t elaborate on irrelevant points since the resume should be concise.
Which skills should I highlight?
For an operations analyst, analytical skills and techniques, leadership skills, and social skills are critical. Mention different methodologies and automation techniques, in particular, if you have them.
Which resume format should I follow?
If your work experience is notable and you have a lot of information to share, you can go for the chronological format. If you are an expert in technologies and analytics methods, you can prioritize the skills section through the functional format. If you are confident about your skills and remarkable work experience, you can use the combined/hybrid format.