Navigating Career Paths: Business Intelligence Salary Trajectories

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Navigating Career Paths: Business Intelligence Salary Trajectories

What is business intelligence? What is the difference between Business Intelligence and Data Analytics? We delve into this lucrative career path with Candace Periera-Roberts, a General Assembly instructor with 20 years of data experience. Learn about the BI Analyst career path and average salaries, how to learn business intelligence (spoiler alert: you don’t need a data degree), and what personality traits make a great business intelligence analyst.

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I’ve worked in data in some form for ~20 years, including working as a business analyst, data warehouse developer/analyst, business intelligence analyst, data engineer, master data analysis instructor, etc.

I originally started with GA teaching SQL workshops at their Atlanta campus and it grew into other data related workshops/camps and being an instructor for Data Analytics Online and for Atlanta. When I was offered a role teaching courses in my GA area, I was excited to share my knowledge with others who wanted to learn this industry.

Business intelligence (BI) combines strategies, procedures and technology that is focused on data. BI includes common functions such as data mining, process analysis, data visualization and analytics, performance management, predictive/prescriptive analytics, reporting and dashboards. A BI may have members such as visualization and data analysts, data engineers, business intelligence analysts, and data scientists.

Can you give us an example of a problem/issue that a BI analyst might be asked to solve on the job?

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The job of a business intelligence analyst varies by company, but the main issues are usually related to KPIs. How does the company work? What are sales markers? The BI analyst will take a top-down approach to answering those questions. Let’s say my company’s sales are down, for example. A BI analyst will be tasked with finding out if that decline is coming from a specific region, a specific product/service, a specific sales rep, etc.

Generally, BI analysts work to ensure that data is ready for use by sources and work with other roles such as database administrators and data engineers. Data analysts work more closely with customers (internal and external) to meet their data needs and also work with BI analysts. Many times these roles are actually confused. offers a list of tasks by role.

Anyone who wants to enter BI should have knowledge and skills that are both technical and non-technical. This list is not exhaustive, but highlights a few that will serve the analyst well.

You don’t have to come from a technical background, but be willing to learn the technical side of the job. Having a business background is actually beneficial because it can help in understanding business problems, understanding the business itself, and creating insights for stakeholders. This helps to ask the right questions to understand the needs of the business. Technical knowledge is useful in this area as you can provide insight into what can be delivered. As you dive deeper from the data analyst role into the BI analyst role and the blending that occurs between the two, additional technical skills such as SQL will be required. I would recommend that anyone in a data management role have solid knowledge of Excel, SQL, and a visualization tool like Tableau.

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Glassdoor actually has a nice path that includes salaries and transition jobs. How to Become a BI Analyst: The Complete Career Path | Glass door. A typical career trajectory would be to start as a BI Analyst, then Senior BI Analyst, then Lead BI Analyst, then Director of Business Intelligence.

The General Assembly Data Analytics Bootcamp can be a jump start to a career in this field.

Before bootcamps, how did you typically become a BI analyst? Is business intelligence a skill set that can be learned at boot? Why?

I personally didn’t get a degree in data, but learned on the job throughout my career and actually taught myself SQL. I ended up getting my Masters in Computer Information Systems, but that’s not necessary for a career in Business Intelligence! In the General Assembly Data Analytics Bootcamp, we not only learn the tools, but also how to hypothesize and work through an empirical process. Students build an Excel project, then a SQL project, and finally a Tableau project.

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You can learn different business intelligence tools and techniques in different programs such as General Assembly or micro masters offered through different colleges (these are longer). There are “boot camp programs” but it’s usually more than a 1-day session. There are also full degree programs in data analytics.

Depending on the level of interest, background, financial obligations, etc. boot camp is the launching pad for a career in data/BI. This is a career path where we are always learning and acquiring new skills.

BI analysts could work in anything from a start-up to a large corporation. Typically, you can find business intelligence teams in mid- to large-sized companies.

BI works in multiple areas of business, it just depends on the organization. BI should generally help deliver information to help the organization achieve its goals. To do this, BI needs to work with both IT and business departments.

Business Analyst Career Road Map

There are many additional certifications that can be obtained, including the Certified Business Intelligence Professional – CBIP. Here is a list of certifications from that may be of interest.

I would start with a program like General Assembly’s data analysis course. This is a great start to this kind of career. There are additional places to learn about data analytics like Data Camp, Coursera, Udemy, etc. Here is a list of additional programs:

Online and in-person networking sessions (if possible due to COVID), has groups in various cities for those interested in data. Research what analysts need because the market is always changing. Never stop learning!

Learn more and read General Assembly reviews of the Course Report. This article was produced by the Course Report team in partnership with the General Assembly.

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Liz Eggleston is the co-founder of Course Report, the most complete resource for students choosing a coding bootcamp. Liz has dedicated her career to empowering passionate career changers to break into technology, providing valuable insights and guidance in the rapidly evolving field of technical education. At Course Report, Liz has built a trusted platform that helps thousands of students navigate the complex landscape of coding bootcamps.

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In this post, I’ll talk about the variety of roles available in the ecosystem and the types of companies you can join, along with the most common career paths. The infographic below will walk you through the different Salesforce paths you can take.

The following infographic was created to help you navigate the vast landscape of Salesforce roles available across different types of companies in the ecosystem.

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While this infographic is intended to be as comprehensive as possible, it does not represent an exhaustive list of

In the following sections, we’ll break down the specific roles and different types of companies, and the reasons why you might choose to move between them.

End users make up the largest segment of any company in this post. Salesforce had over 150,000 customers in 2020, and this number has likely grown significantly.

These are the companies that actually buy and use Salesforce within their business –

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