Nov 15, 2017 at 12:00am ET By Alyssa Walker

Business analytics are reshaping fields from healthcare to manufacturing. The demand for data scientists is expected to increase by 39 percent by 2020.What do employers want from business graduates? Those who understand how data analytics works—and how business stands to grow exponentially with it.

Major business schools are now offering courses and microcredentials in business analytics.

Duke University Fuqua School of Business plans to offer a new MBA certificate in “Management Science and Technology Management.” The certificate complements the school’s new Master of Quantitative Management program.

In an article on BusinessBecause, Duke Fuqua dean Bill Boulding said, “We were hearing from companies that there was a skills gap between being able to identify insights from big data and translating that information into business functions. This was a no-brainer for us in leveraging our faculty’s strengths to train analysts in how to use and communicate data to influence decision-making.”

The MIT Sloan School of Management and NYU Stern School of Business are following suit with specialist data science courses and business analytics degrees.

Harvard Business School also recently rolled out a new online certificate program in data. Their target audience? Experienced professionals, MBAs, and those business graduates who want a foundation in quantitative analysis and data science.

In the same article, Karim Lakhani, co-founder of the Harvard Business School Digital Initiative said, “We are in the midst of a secular shift in the economy, where transactions are being digitized and generating more data, making it critical that companies recruit business leaders who are both analytics-savvy and understand how to deploy their new capabilities to drive strategic advantage.”

Your takeaway? As a business student, make sure you have a working knowledge of data analytics. You’re going to need it.


Alyssa Walker is a freelance writer, educator, and nonprofit consultant. She lives in the White Mountains of New Hampshire with her family.

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