Operations Analyst

Study how a business is run to see where improvements can be made.
picture of Operations Analyst

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$40,000 – $123,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Operations Analysts do?

An Operations Analyst, also known as an Operations Research Analyst, is paid to find and fix deficiencies in a company’s processes, practices, and procedures so that it can more easily reach its destination. That might be higher profits, fewer costs, improved customer service, enhanced product offerings, or increased market share.

That’s a challenging job. After all, succeeding in business is like trying to get across town during rush hour: Although there are many ways to reach your destination, not all paths are equal. Because there are bottlenecks, roadblocks, and detours, getting where you need to be quickly, easily, and efficiently requires careful decisions about your itinerary and route. As an Operations Analyst, you’re your company’s GPS system.

To do your Operations Analyst job well, you use math, engineering, and technology to create models of problems and simulations of solutions. For instance, if you own a busy mall, you may simulate different traffic patterns in the parking lot to determine which will ease congestion most. Or, if you own a supermarket, you may simulate different merchandise displays in order to determine which will move the greatest number of products. If you make cars, meanwhile, you may create a model that helps you determine the ideal number of employees in a shift, or the optimal number of parts to keep in stock for production.

It doesn’t matter what the problem is. As an Operations Analyst, you’re paid to identify it, collect data about it, and ask questions that will help you solve it. You then use software and strategies to analyze the situation and make recommendations, resulting in the more efficient management of money, materials, equipment, people, and time.

Should I be an Operations Analyst?

You should have a master's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • High Achiever: You love the challenge of tackling difficult work.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.

  • Also known as: Decision Analyst, Methods Analyst, Network Operations Analyst, Office System Analyst, Procedure Analyst See More

    How to become an Operations Analyst

    Most Operations Analysts have a Master's degree. Start by getting your Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aaah9q&chl=|||bachelor%27s+%2830%25%29|master%27s+%2856%25%29|doctorate+%2815%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,56
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