Business Analytics (BA) is one of the most important recently developed areas of information systems management. It generally describes the intensive, iterative, algorithmic and methodical analysis of an organization's data/information for insights leading to productive actions based on those insights. Organizations dedicated to intensive use of data-driven decision making apply advanced data management and statistical techniques to analyze performance, customer data and patterns, and also develop insights from external data from competitors and the industry/field.

Based on the earlier sub-discipline of business intelligence, Business Analytics adds new techniques and skills in pattern analysis, optimization, diagnostic and predictive modeling to yield higher quality insights to enable advanced decision making and change.

As the field of Business Analytics has developed, several sub-disciplines have evolved, (with differing techniques and purposes) including:

  • Descriptive
  • Predictive
  • Discovery
  • Diagnostic
  • Prescriptive

Nearly all studies of business analytics and related employment indicate this is one of the hottest markets in IT. One of the best studies was published by Forbes Magazine in November, 2015. That study showed that applicants with business analytics skills had an average nationally of 10 - 13 job offers. Local employment estimates for the Twin Cities Area range from 5,000 t0 18,000 new positions within the next three years. The Minnesota Department of Labor's recent IT Workforce study quoted 16,000 unduplicated BA positions.

Metro's Graduate Business Analytics Certificate builds on a strong base of general MIS and IT knowledge and problem formulation, to develop significant depth in both descriptive analytics and modern predictive analytics techniques. The Certificate adds applied study through a choice of a supply chain-oriented elective or a more data management-driven elective sequence. This exciting new Certificate is also 100% transferable into Metro's highly regarded Masters in MIS (MMIS) program.