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BUSINESS CAREER GUIDES

Business Operations Specialist Career

OVERVIEW

What is a Business Operations Specialist?


 

A business operations specialist plays a critical part in optimizing the efficiency and effectiveness of a company's operations. They’re responsible for analyzing and improving various aspects of business processes, systems, and workflows to drive productivity, reduce costs, and enhance overall performance.

These business professionals collaborate with just about every team within an organization (particularly finance, human resources, accounts receivable, supply chain, and technology) to find areas of improvement and implement strategic initiatives. Business operations specialists use data analysis, project management methodologies, and industry best practices to eliminate bottlenecks and enhance overall efficiency.

Business operations specialists also contribute to strategic planning by analyzing market trends, identifying opportunities for growth, and recommending strategies to optimize business operations in alignment with organizational objectives.

RESPONSIBILITIES

Key Responsibilities of a Business Operations Specialist

Business operations specialists wear many hats in their pursuit to drive efficiency and optimize an organization’s operations. Some of their most common day-to-day tasks include:

  • Analyzing and improving organizational processes for maximum efficiency: This includes conducting in-depth analyses of existing processes, identifying bottlenecks, and implementing strategies for business development. 
  • Identifying and implementing cost-saving strategies: Business operations specialists closely examine financial aspects of operations, identifying opportunities for cost reduction and implementing strategies to maximize cost efficiency without compromising product or service quality.
  • Collaborating with various departments to streamline operations: It’s important for business operations specialists to work closely with different teams to ensure seamless coordination and alignment of operational goals. 
  • Developing and maintaining performance metrics and reports: Business operations specialists establish key performance indicators (KPIs) and metrics to evaluate different operational areas. 
  • Implementing and monitoring process improvement initiatives: This involves monitoring the effectiveness of enhancement initiatives, tracking progress, and making adjustments to drive consistent improvements.
  • Ensuring compliance with industry standards and regulations: These professionals are responsible for staying up to date with industry regulations and standards. An important part of the job is making sure operational processes align with legal and regulatory requirements.
  • Assisting with project management and resource allocation: Business operations specialists actively participate in project management activities, supporting the planning, execution, and monitoring of projects.

Where Does a Business Operations Specialist Work?

A business operations specialist can find employment in various work settings, offering a diverse range of opportunities. Some of the potential work environments include manufacturing and product companies, technology and software firms, financial institutions, government agencies, healthcare organizations, and consulting firms.  

EDUCATION & BEST DEGREES

How Do I Become a Business Operations Specialist?

Business operations specialists wear many hats in their pursuit to drive efficiency and optimize an organization’s operations. Some of their most common day-to-day tasks include:

  • Analyzing and improving organizational processes for maximum efficiency: This includes conducting in-depth analyses of existing processes, identifying bottlenecks, and implementing strategies for business development. 
  • Identifying and implementing cost-saving strategies: Business operations specialists closely examine financial aspects of operations, identifying opportunities for cost reduction and implementing strategies to maximize cost efficiency without compromising product or service quality.
  • Collaborating with various departments to streamline operations: It’s important for business operations specialists to work closely with different teams to ensure seamless coordination and alignment of operational goals. 
  • Developing and maintaining performance metrics and reports: Business operations specialists establish key performance indicators (KPIs) and metrics to evaluate different operational areas. 
  • Implementing and monitoring process improvement initiatives: This involves monitoring the effectiveness of enhancement initiatives, tracking progress, and making adjustments to drive consistent improvements.
  • Ensuring compliance with industry standards and regulations: These professionals are responsible for staying up to date with industry regulations and standards. An important part of the job is making sure operational processes align with legal and regulatory requirements.
  • Assisting with project management and resource allocation: Business operations specialists actively participate in project management activities, supporting the planning, execution, and monitoring of projects.

Best Degrees for a Business Operations Specialist

Business
COMPARE

Supply Chain and Operations Management - B.S.

This online supply chain and operations management program will prepare...

This online supply chain and operations management program will prepare you for real-world experiences in business.

  • Time: 61% of graduates finish similar programs within 19 months.
  • Tuition: $3,575 per 6-month term.
  • Courses: 36 courses in this program.

Skills for your résumé that you will learn in this program:

  • Project Management
  • Strategic Planning
  • Detail Oriented
  • Management
  • Leadership
  • Operations:
Business
COMPARE

Finance – B.S.

This online finance program is career-focused so you will gain relevant...

This online finance program is career-focused so you will gain relevant industry skills.

  • Time: 62% of graduates finish similar programs within 24 months
  • Tuition: $3,575 per 6-month term
  • Courses: 41 courses in this program

Some careers and jobs this business degree will prepare you for:

  • Management
  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Spreadsheets
  • Financial Analysis
  • Problem Solving

The competency-based model at WGU allows you to move as quickly as you can master the material, and do your coursework on your schedule. Flexibility is key with the B.S. in finance at WGU.

Business
COMPARE

Master of Business Administration

The flexible MBA program you need, focused on business management,...

The flexible MBA program you need, focused on business management, strategy, and leading teams:

  • Time: Graduates can finish in 12 months
  • Tuition: $4,755 per 6-month term
  • Courses: 11 total courses in this program

Skills for your résumé you will learn in this program include: 

  • Leadership strategies
  • Talent management
  • Communication
  • Data collection and interpretation
  • Financial statements

Our competency-based model gives you an innovative learning experience you won't find anywhere else—and our MBA grads tell us they loved accelerating their program to see a faster ROI.

Business
COMPARE

Business Management – B.S. Business Administration

Hone your business acumen and garner added respect:...

Hone your business acumen and garner added respect:

  • Time: 61% of graduates finish within 19 months
  • Tuition: $3,755 per 6-month term
  • Courses: 40 total courses in this program

Skills for your résumé this program will teach you include: 

  • Business communication
  • Product development
  • Decision making models
  • Project management strategies
  • Budgeting for business

This online degree program is an excellent choice for kick-starting your organizational management career.

Business
COMPARE

Supply Chain Certificate – School of Business

Boost your résumé and gain valuable experience with a supply chain...

Boost your résumé and gain valuable experience with a supply chain certificate from the School of Business.

  • Time: 6 months from start to finish.
  • Cost: $2,500 for the certificate.
  • Courses: 4 courses total in this program.

This program is designed for individuals who are ready to take their supply chain experience to the next level and become a front-line leader in their organization.

Whether you want to advance your career in this field, or you're just getting started, a supply chain certificate can help you be ready for your next career step. You'll be prepared to work in a variety of industries including: 

  • Startups
  • Healthcare
  • Manufacturing
  • IT
  • Retail
  • E-Commerce

How Much Does a Business Operations Specialist Make?

$75,990

The salary prospects for business operations specialists are promising. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual wage for business operations specialists and related jobs such as operations analyst or operations associate is approximately $75,990. (Note that this figure represents the median, with 50% of professionals earning below this amount and 50% earning above it.)

What Is the Projected Job Growth?

7%

The job outlook for business operations specialists is highly favorable, with strong projected growth and demand in the coming years. According to the projected data, employment of these professionals is expected to grow by 7% from 2022 to 2032.

SKILLS

What Skills Does a Business Operations Specialist Need?

To excel as a business operations specialist, there are a few necessary skills that you should focus on building. These skills will help you drive efficiency and contribute to the overall success of the organization. Here are some of the key skills required for this profession.:

  • Strong analytical and problem-solving abilities: As a business operations specialist, you need to possess keen analytical and problem-solving skills to identify operational inefficiencies, analyze data, and develop effective solutions. 
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills: Effective communication is important in collaborating with other departments, stakeholders, and senior management. 
  • Ability to manage multiple projects and prioritize tasks: Business operations specialists often handle multiple projects simultaneously. Being able to effectively manage your time, prioritize tasks, and meet deadlines is crucial to successful project outcomes.
  • Proficiency in data analysis and reporting tools: Proficiency in data analysis tools, such as Excel or statistical software, allows you to analyze large datasets, identify patterns, and extract insights. 
  • Familiarity with process improvement methodologies, such as Lean Six Sigma: Knowledge of process improvement methodologies equips you with the tools and strategic approach to identify and eliminate waste, improve efficiency, and streamline operations. 
  • Understanding of financial management and budgeting: Business operations specialists should have a solid understanding of financial management principles and budgeting. This knowledge helps you make informed decisions concerning resource allocation.

Our Online University Degree Programs Start on the First of Every Month, All Year Long

No need to wait for spring or fall semester. It's back-to-school time at WGU year-round. Get started by talking to an Enrollment Counselor today, and you'll be on your way to realizing your dream of a bachelor's or master's degree—sooner than you might think!

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Interested in Becoming a Business Operations Specialist?

Learn more about degree programs that can prepare you for this meaningful career.