Are you looking to start your own business? Do you want a career in business, but you’re unsure about what type of business career you want to pursue? A bachelor’s degree in business studies might just be the right choice for you and give you the flexibility you need to be competitive in today’s volatile marketplace.
What Is Business Studies?
Business studies is a broad term that touches on the major business disciplines, such as accounting, marketing, operations management, and human resource management. Until recently, this coursework was referred to as general business administration in the United States. This degree, also known as a BBA, helps students prepare for a variety of business careers as well as exposes them to business areas that they may want to follow up with additional study.
Business Studies Courses
A business studies degree program includes courses in the following disciplines:
- Financial Accounting — A broad overview of business and tax accounting, profit and loss (P&L) management, and business investments.
- Human Resources Management — An overview of how to successfully manage a company’s greatest resource—its people. Topics include compensation, benefits, recruiting, and employee rules and standards.
- Operations and Supply Chain Management — Maintaining good relations with suppliers is essential to a profitable company. These courses include transportation management, resource allocation, and identifying the right vendors and suppliers.
- Marketing Foundations — Having a knowledge of how to attract customers for your products and services and how to successfully brand your company is also an important skill.
- Process and Quality Management — These courses will help you learn how to make sure that your employees and your company are operating efficiently and that you are offering a quality product or service to your customers.
Advantages of Pursuing a Business Studies Degree
Gone are the days when workers stayed in the same job for their entire careers. Today, the average person holds more than 12 jobs in their lifetime. In fact, the average tenure in a job is decreasing, down to just 4.3 years in 2022 compared to 5 years in 2020. The reasons for people switching jobs so frequently include companies laying off workers or going out of business entirely, workers looking for better opportunities and benefits, and lack of flexibility on the part of the employer regarding accommodations such as childcare and remote work.
In this volatile work environment, it’s beneficial to have a broad range of knowledge and skills. Just a few of the many advantages of a business studies degree to today’s marketplace include:
With a business studies degree, you’ll have the knowledge you’ll need to pivot when you want to advance at your current employer or make a switch to a new career. For example, even if your first job is in accounting, you’ll have the background to switch to a career in human resource management or operations management without having to return to school.
The broad background gained in a business studies program can make you attractive to employers of smaller companies where employees wear more than one ‘hat.” This is becoming more and more common as companies streamline their operations.
A business studies degree is also good training for careers that rely on more than one business discipline, such as being a human resource manager at an accounting firm or a manager of a small manufacturing company.
Business studies coursework is also good background knowledge for those who want to start their own businesses. Small business owners need to have at least a basic grasp of most areas of their operations and often handle hiring, recruiting, training, bookkeeping, IT, and management, at least until the company grows large enough to be able to support workers for all those functions.
Considerations when Pursuing a Business Studies Degree
Of course, as with any degree, there are some areas one should be advised of prior to pursuing a business studies degree. Some of these aspects include:
Most business studies degree programs have a lot of competition for available slots. This is a highly sought-after degree, and it may be difficult to get into a program.
Need for Strong Quantitative Skills
A business studies degree includes coursework in accounting and statistics. These courses rely on good quantitative skills, which are not everyone’s forte. If you’re not comfortable working with numbers, this may not be the best degree program for you.
Additional Education Needed for Certain Careers
Because a business studies degree is a general degree, additional education may be required for certain careers. For example, you won’t be able to sit for a CPA exam after finishing the accounting courses in your business studies degree curriculum. Nor will you have the training to run a human resource department or head an IT department. Most of these careers require an MBA in addition to your undergraduate degree.
Potential Skills Gained From a Business Studies Degree
A business studies degree program offers more than just a college degree. You’ll gain several life and business skills from the program. Some of these include:
- Critical Thinking — One of the most important skills of a good business leader is to quickly analyze the available data and observations and come to a decision based on these facts.
- Leadership and Communication — A good business leader must be able to communicate both up and down the corporate ladder. To be effective in business management, a person needs to be able to inspire their team and ensure they have all the tools they need to do their jobs well. Leadership and communication are skills that will serve students well in all aspects of life.
- Data Analysis — Data analysis is the science of using logic and statistics to evaluate data. This skill is an important part of good decision-making.
- Decision-Making — Decision-making brings together a variety of skills, such as communication, data analysis, and critical thinking, to help business managers arrive at a course of action that is logical and effective.
Business Studies Degree Career Options
There are many career options for those with a bachelor’s degree in business studies. A few of these include:
A management analyst works with a company’s management team to improve the company’s efficiency. Analysts generally work for third parties and advise corporate clients.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median pay (2021) of a management analyst in the United States is $93,000. The BLS estimates that the number of jobs in this field will grow by 11 percent, or around 108,000 jobs, by 2031. That’s much faster than the average growth rate of all jobs in the US.
A fundraiser is responsible for organizing and implementing campaigns or events to raise funds for a specific cause, organization, or project. They work to engage and inspire individuals, businesses, and communities to contribute donations or support through various strategies, such as networking, marketing, and relationship building.
According to the BLS, the median pay (2021) of a fundraiser in the United States is $60,660. They estimate the number of jobs in this field will grow by 11 percent or around 11,800 jobs by 2031. That’s much faster than the average growth rate of all jobs in the US.
A sales manager recruits, hires, trains, and manages a team of sales professionals. Many sales managers also sell products or services themselves. Depending on the company, a sales manager may travel to visit key clients and observe and train sales representatives in the field.
According to the BLS, the median pay (2021) of a sales manager in the United States is $127,490. They estimate that the number of jobs in this field will grow by around five percent by 2031. That’s similar to the growth rate of all jobs in the US.
Supply Chain Manager
A supply chain manager analyzes and coordinates where a company gets the raw materials needed to make its products and determines how it gets those products to the consumer or wholesaler.
According to the (BLS), the median pay (2021) of a supply chain manager (logistician) in the United States is $77,030. The BLS estimates that the number of jobs in this field will grow by around 28 percent by 2031. That’s much higher than the growth rate of all jobs in the US.
Earning a BS in Business Studies at JWU
Johnson & Wales University (JWU) offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate business degrees, including a BS in Business Studies. This two-year degree program is designed for students who have already earned an associate degree or its equivalent. This allows students to earn a bachelor’s degree in business without ‘starting over’ in a four-year degree program.
This degree program features coursework in managerial accounting, the principles of marketing, human resource management, quality management and process, and strategic management.
Many of our degree programs may be completed exclusively via online learning, including the BS in Business Studies program. This program provides flexibility for students with other obligations, such as family care or job responsibilities. With online learning, students have a lot of flexibility as to when they ‘attend’ classes and finish coursework.
ABOUT JOHNSON & WALES UNIVERSITY
Johnson & Wales University offers undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degree programs in more than 50 fields of study. Founded in 1914, Johnson & Wales has a current enrollment of around 8,000 undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral students. The university is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education. Financial aid is available for qualified students.