Business degrees are very popular because the principles they teach can be applied to all sorts of different fields. However, are all business majors equally employable? This is an important question for international students, as some business degrees are considered more valuable than others.
The Best Business Degrees to Study in College
Not all corporate jobs provide the same level of exposure to the inner workings of an organization. Those in sales and marketing, corporate strategy, planning, and finance tend to have a greater understanding of how a business works.
There are over 20 types of majors offered in institutions across the USA. The most well-known are finance, marketing, systems, operations, and human resources. But as times change, more variations emerge that help students better grasp highly specialized fields, such as ecommerce, entrepreneurship. and supply chain management.
Different Types of Business Degrees
Finance is a sought-after major since it can lead to a lucrative career in investment banking. The major focuses on two aspects – how money flows through businesses, and how the flow can be better modulated to meet business goals. Whereas accounting deals with the issue of debentures, finance focuses on how debentures improve the profitability of a business.
A finance major can be extremely valuable because of the knowledge about stock market trading that it provides. A degree in finance is the gateway to trading floors, and potentially a high income. This also makes it the most competitive field of all business majors. The best and the brightest are always pushing to earn their company the next billion dollars, and take home a percent of that as pay.
Many tasks might one day be automated to some degree, but not marketing. No matter how far technology advances, sales and marketing will still need the human touch. No machine could ever convince you to buy a new car or a certain type of dish soap.
Sales is the exchange of goods and services. Marketing is the set of decisions regarding price, place, product, and promotion of sales. It is a fascinating field, and graduates can work in almost any type of corporate job. This diversity makes marketing the most employable amongst all types of business majors. If you are looking for a future-proof career, marketing could be it.
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This major focuses on making a business as valuable as possible. Every action is analyzed to its core and benchmarked against both internal standards, and the industry as a whole. Inefficient parts of the business are either improved or made redundant. The operations branch arose from the need to make a production line more efficient. However, it is now utilized to organize any activity that can be measured. It requires a very analytical mind, and is best suited for those who like to look more closely at parts rather than the whole.
4. Human Resources
Until the service industry emerged, HR was considered to be the most passive among all business majors. All that they had to do was prepare payrolls and plan manpower. As the service industry has expanded, HR has become more crucial to everyday decision-making. Hiring, training and maintaining a workforce is far more difficult than it sounds. HR managers have the task of keeping employees happy, while also inspiring them to give their best. Experienced HR managers can transition into becoming headhunters. Headhunters are recruiters who locate top executives with specialized skills for a job and bring them to a company.
The requirements for a startup are different from that of an established company. Working at a startup can be exceptionally demanding, from expanding the company into dozens of countries at the same time, to raising capital. Startups also require an in-depth understanding of venture capitalism and how to invest. Entrepreneurship is a more recent addition to business education. Those majoring in this area are in huge demand due to the specialized nature of the profession.
6. Retail Marketing
Retail marketing has recently emerged as a crucial sector. Retail is all about convincing the customer to make the buying decision. This is an offshoot of sales and marketing that has become identified as visual marketing. Visual marketing is the arrangement of products in a way that leads to impulse buying. Retail marketing requires an understanding of psychology, as well as a knowledge of the products and company.
7. Supply Chain Management
Most businesses rely on multiple vendors to provide them with a smooth flow of components. Vertical integration of manufacturing is a thing of the past. It is vital that every vendor is contacted at the correct time and delivers accordingly. Otherwise, the entire production line will come to a halt. Supply chain management addresses these specific needs. It is an offshoot of operations management.
The list goes on…
There is, to a certain extent, an overlap between various majors such as operations and supply chain management, or marketing and retail.
This means if you major in one field, you will likely have the opportunity to transition to another. However, depending on the position, you may need additional education for some roles.
Making Your Decision
Many U.S. colleges and universities don’t require first-year students to declare a major, so you if you’re just starting school, you have some time. If you foresee a business career in your future, consider your passions, your academic strengths, and what aspects of problem-solving excite you. Combine these with what sort of career you would like to have after graduation, and choose the business major that most closely aligns with your strengths and goals.
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