A prospective budget analyst can take several relevant courses offered through undergraduate degree programs in business administration, economics, finance and accounting. Each of these programs will allow students to gain practical experience with estimating costs, analyzing budgets, and planning for the future. Many programs also include general business coursework in topics like marketing and business ethics.
Here are a few common concepts found in budget analyst courses:
- Proper documentation
- Cost effectiveness
- Working as a team or in a group
List of Classes
Budget Development Course
This course teaches students how to create a budget for long and short term projects. Students practice techniques for setting a reasonable, maintainable budget and set financial objectives for a business, individual or organization. They analyze data to determine possible budget issues a company may have and try to resolve them. Professors usually provide mock companies and information that students can use to develop a basic budget.
Financial Statements Analysis Course
This class teaches important skills required for budget analysts, such as how to read and evaluate financial statements and similar reports. Students learn to apply basic accounting principles to make budget decisions that affect investments and subsidiaries. They also learn how to determine if financial statements are reporting information accurately.
Budget Execution Course
This course benefits prospective budget analysts by teaching the principles used to integrate a budget and make it work for a company. Students learn how to keep track of a company's funding and expenditures, incorporate all sources of funding and look for additional funding options. Upon completion of this course, students are able to create a budget for a company that will work from month to month.
Financial Project Management Course
Future budget analysts learn how to apply financial concepts to analyze the estimated cost of a project and evaluate its strengths and weaknesses to determine if the company can complete it. Students account for the length of time and number of people it will take to complete the project and if there are any issues hindering its progress. This class instructs students how to design projects, implement them and run them at full production so they come out at or below the estimated budget.
Introductory Analysis Course
Students learn how to conduct a budgetary analysis using the principles covered in previous courses. They break down complex budgets by department and create a detailed analysis before proposing the budget to the company. The course also teaches students how to create financial recommendations and justify the budget to the company by backing up their estimations with the company's financial data. Coursework may include balancing imaginary budgets for imaginary companies.