Budget analysts essential information:
- 2011 median pay: $69.090
- 2011, number of jobs: 57,110
- Employment growth forecast, 2010-2020: 10 percent
- Entry level education requirements: Bachelor’s degree
Budget analysts; what they do:
If you have an eagle eye for detail and love working with numbers, chances are you’d make a great budget analyst. Budget analysts are major contributors to aiding companies, governments, and universities in organizing their finances.
Budget analysts, along with project managers, develop a business’ budget and monitor it extremely closely at all times to assure the business stays on track with the budget. Budget analysts may suggest budget cuts in certain areas or redistribution of budgets and they may award more money in an area.
When budget analysts find discrepancies in a budget, they must thoroughly explain those discrepancies, as well as help develop a plan to correct them. Any recommendation for additional funding in an area requires a thorough explanation to senior management, legislators, and/or the public. Budget analysts also estimate, as accurately as possible, future budget needs.
A budget analyst career includes reviewing all budget proposals for accuracy and compliance with laws and regulations and carefully reviewing each funding request and determining if it’s necessary. A budget analyst career may include using cost-benefit analyses in reviewing financial requests, assessing program tradeoffs, and exploring funding alternatives.
Budget analysts job titles:
- Budget Officer
- Chief Financial Officer (CFO)
- Budget and Policy Analyst
- Cost Accountant
- Accounting Supervisor
- Staff Analyst
- Accounting Coordinator
Budget Analysts Education, Certification and License Requirements
Typically, people seeking a budget analyst career need at least a bachelor’s degree, although some employers require a master’s degree. A variety of bachelor’s degrees may satisfy the education requirement for a budget analyst position, such as a bachelor’s degree accounting, finance, business, public administration, economics, statistics, political science, or sociology.
Occasionally, budget or finance-related work substitutes for formal education.
Budget analysts programs cover subjects such as:
- Public administration
- Political science
Some organizations require new budget analysts to work a complete budget cycle (one year) for training. Budget analysts may also continue taking professional development classes throughout their career.
Budget analysts working for the government may earn the Certified Government Financial Manager credential from the Association of Government Accountants. This certification requires a bachelor’s degree, 24 credit hours of financial management study, 2 years of professional-level experience in governmental financial management, and passing scores on a series of exams. Maintaining the certification requires 80 hours of continuing education every 2 years.
Career Advancement Opportunities
Budget analysts may work their way up from the limited responsibilities of an entry-level analyst to an intermediate or senior budget analyst position.
Budget Analysts Job Outlook
Forecast: 10 percent employment growth from 2010 to 2020 for budget analysts, on par with the average for all occupations.
As data and statistical techniques are uncovered, budget analysis becomes more complex and the duties of a budget analysis grow. Organizations are also under increasing pressure to use public funds efficiently – especially in times of cutbacks.
Budget Analysts Salary
- 2011 median annual wage: $69,090
- 2011, workers at the 75th percentile annual wage: $86,540
- 2011, workers at the 25% percentile annual wage: $55,260
Budget Analysts Major Employers
- Federal government
- Educational services; state, local, and private
- State government;
- Local government