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Are you analytical and detail oriented? Are you looking for an exciting and challenging career that uses your many talents? Then becoming a budget analyst could be just right for you. This field is holding steady, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Outlook Handbook. And, demand for budget analysts is expected to continue with the demand for proper use of government funds.
Budget analysts help companies, non-profit organizations, government agencies and other entities in organizing their financial resources. They generate, analyze and put budgets into action, while making estimates of future financial need for these concerns. For private businesses, this may mean examining the budget to find new ways to improve efficiency and increase profits. For non-profit and government organizations, this may mean analyzing the most efficient way of allocating funds and resources across various programs and departments. Budget analysts also prepare reports on an annual basis and whenever needed to evaluate budget proposals. They may also be involved in policy analysis, and drafting budget related legislation. The top executives in private companies who make the final decisions on the budget rely on budget analysts to develop the information they need for those decisions.
A budget analyst’s job requires that spending is checked throughout the year to be sure it follows the proposed budget and to decide if changes are necessary for various programs or projects. Here are some of the responsibilities of a budget analyst:
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this career is expected to grow by 7 percent between 2016 and 2026. That is approximately as fast as the average for all occupations. However, because of the need for effective use of public funds in federal, state and local governments, demand for budget analysts will continue.
This is not to say that there will be no competition for this type of employment. Those who distinguish themselves early will have the best prospects. A bachelor’s in business administration degree in accounting from Bryant & Stratton College could be just what you need to stand out.
This degree program will prepare you for a career as a budget analyst. This program puts emphasis on accounting concepts as well as management, finance, technology, marketing and business law. You will also learn important business skills via courses in operations management and strategic planning.
In addition, you will be able to recognize the common factors between financial theory and tax law as well as the economic and social policy issues of taxation. You will be able to report and record financial information using GAAPs (generally accepted accounting principles). You will learn to judge appropriate ethical behaviors that follow the laws and regulations applicable to accounting practice. Also, you will learn the tools to integrate theory, knowledge, and technology to interpret financial and nonfinancial information to aid leaders within an organization.
Since a bachelor’s degree is usually required to become a budget analyst, this degree from Bryant & Stratton College will set you well on your way to meeting your goals.
It is often helpful to have taken courses in economics and statistics, which are suited for this career. You may choose to become a Certified Government Financial Manager, which requires a bachelor’s degree, 24 credit hours of study in financial management and two years of professional-level experience in government financial management. For this designation, you must take and pass a series of exams and keep up 80 continuing education credits every two years.
In addition to being detail oriented, budget analysts must have good analytical, communication, math and writing skills. While additional mathematics courses may put you ahead of the pack, your degree will provide you with the firm foundation, needed to excel.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics the largest employer of budget analysts in 2016 was the federal government at 20 percent. Next were educational services; state, local, and private, at about 15 percent. Another 11 percent were employed in state government, excluding education and hospitals. About 11 percent were employed in professional, scientific and technical services. Local government, excluding education and hospitals, made up another 10 percent of employment for budget analysts.
Most budget analysts work in offices, full time, occasionally traveling to verify allocations or obtain budget details. Sometimes, overtime is necessary and tight work schedules and deadlines can make the job somewhat stressful.
While this information may help you in determining the right career path for you, understand that job market data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Handbook is intended to provide insight into occupational opportunities, and is not to be construed as a guarantee of salary or job title. Bryant & Stratton College cannot guarantee employment in any field.
For insights into a career as a budget analyst, please visit the Business Degrees section of our blog. Here you will find valuable information about business and financial careers and a career as a budget analyst. Explore the website and be sure to visit the Accounting Bachelor’s Degree page