Should I Become a Pricing Analyst?
Pricing analysts develop and employ pricing models to measure product profitability. Some of their job duties include analyzing financial statements and costs, creating budgets and evaluating competitors. Overtime work might be required to meet deadlines. Employers typically want candidates to have a minimum of a bachelor's degree in business or a related field. Optional certifications are available and might be required by some employers.
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|Degree Level||Bachelor's degree; master's may be preferred by some employers|
|Degree Field||Business, finance, accounting or a related field|
|Key Skills||Detail-oriented; organizational, analytical, communication and time-management skills; basic computer skills|
|Salary (2014)||$60,050 (median for cost estimators)|
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Step 1: Complete a Bachelor's Degree Program
According to job postings from October 2012, many employers require candidates to have bachelor's degrees. Students have some flexibility when choosing a major for this career, but programs that include courses in math, statistics, marketing and finance are typically the best options. Bachelor's degree programs in finance can help students to develop analytical skills in portfolio management, commercial finance and other financial markets. Common core business courses in a finance program include financial accounting, microeconomics and business law.
- Develop exceptional computer skills. Employer job postings from October 2012 reveal that companies value candidates who have experience with back-office and billing systems, database management and Microsoft Office programs. Becoming familiar with these programs while in school can give aspiring pricing analysts a chance to get ahead before entering the job market. Schools may even offer courses covering common business programs or Microsoft Office programs.
Step 2: Acquire Appropriate Experience
Individuals seeking a pricing analysis careers may not be able to jump right into a position after obtaining a bachelor's degree. Job postings from 2012 indicate that employers prefer candidates who are skilled at analyzing and developing appropriate pricing strategies. Some employers may also seek workers who have experience in the particular industry the job is focused on.
Students can usually gain the necessary experience through a junior pricing analysis or finance position. Companies hiring junior pricing analysts may only require a year or two or experience in a related setting in addition to a bachelor's degree.
Step 3: Complete a Master's Degree Program
Although a master's degree is rarely a hard requirement to become a pricing analyst, individuals who possess a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree should have the best opportunities for jobs and promotions. Students typically have the option to choose a concentration within an MBA program, such as marketing, statistics, finance and accounting. Course options in an MBA program may include financial decision making, business ethics, risk management and corporate strategy.