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What is Business Administration?

Are you interested in pursuing a business administration degree in Oregon? Majoring in business and business-related fields often qualifies graduates for a wide variety of professional opportunities. As a result, this is a highly popular major among college students in the United States. Those enrolled in these academic programs are also likely to have access to jobs in almost every industry, especially those that involve business, management, finance, leadership, and/or marketing. Additionally, business administration students tend to acquire knowledge and skills that can be transferred to other professions.

Business administration majors can choose from a variety of professional opportunities, but most end up working in jobs in business and finance. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment in these occupations is expected to increase by 8% from 2020 to 2030. This is about as fast as the average for all occupations and will account for an additional 750,800 new jobs nationwide. While there are several factors impacting this growth, the primary contributors are the continually changing economy and complex taxation regulatory system. Additional opportunities are also likely due to the continued use of business data and market research by companies and organizations to understand clients, customers, and product demand.

Professional and business services is the third largest industry in Oregon, accounting for $28.6 billion in revenue each year. This indicates that there are many employment opportunities available to business administration graduates. Notably, many of the state’s other top sectors are also likely to hire employ business administration professionals. Real estate, manufacturing, wholesale trade, finance, healthcare, and retail often depend on workers with knowledge and experience in this field. Overall, Oregon employed 113,470 business and financial operations professionals in May 2021.

The median annual wage for business and financial occupations nationwide was $76,570 in May 2021. Oregon has a slightly higher annual mean wage of $79,470. This is quite a bit higher than the state reported annual mean wage of $59,070 for all occupations, meaning that graduates are likely to have decent pay potential.

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Online Business Administration Education in Oregon

Many colleges and universities in Oregon have business administration degrees. Some may be tempted to enroll in online programs offered elsewhere, but prospective students should give preference to institutions located within their state. While distance learning allows for more flexible scheduling options, local schools provide regionally appropriate instruction that can help graduates be more prepared for employment in the area. Not only are colleges and universities in the state more familiar with local employer expectations and preferences, but they also tend to have established relationships with prominent companies and organizations throughout the region. This can make both internships and full-time employment more accessible.

Those who obtain degrees in business administration are likely to have some level of expertise in business, management, finance, leadership, and marketing. Knowledge and skills in these areas are generally highly valued, as companies and organizations in almost every industry find them extremely valuable. As a result, graduates are able to pursue a wide assortment of opportunities.

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Most professionals with academic backgrounds in business administration, however, are employed by:

  • Bookkeeping and Accounting Services
  • Company and Enterprise Management
  • Energy and Utilities
  • Financial Services
  • Healthcare Services
  • Management Consulting
  • Non-Profit Organizations
  • Technology

Because those with business administrator degrees can work in many different professions, daily responsibilities typically depend on the workplace selected. Employer expectations also vary, making every job unique. Some of the most significant factors that can impact employment parameters include the type of industry, employer preferences/needs, and workplace size.

To ensure that business administration graduates are prepared to perform a wide variety of tasks that can be applied to almost any industry, colleges and universities focus their curriculums on general, broad topics within the field. Students are also often given opportunities to tailor their instruction by selecting academic concentrations. Ultimately, business administration students and professionals tend to have the ability to select classes and work that aligns with their personal interests and/or passions.

Those who are best suited to business administration degree programs and professional positions typically possess great organizational, managerial, communication, and mathematical skills. They also tend to be highly self-motivated learners who enjoy pursing various development opportunities, solving problems, and completing tasks.

In most cases, those interested in obtaining business administration jobs will require some amount of higher education. Many colleges and universities in Oregon offer relevant academic programs at the associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels. Some professional certificates may also be available at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Each degree option is unique, resulting in different occupational opportunities and benefits.

Prospective business and finance professionals should be aware that most employers in the field expect candidates to have, at minimum, bachelor’s degrees. There are, however, employment opportunities available at every level.

Online Associate Degree in Business Administration (AS)

Associate degrees in business administration generally consist of 60 credit hours of coursework that takes full-time students approximately two years to complete. These programs are comprised of both general education and major-specific classes. Students can expect to receive a broad introduction to the liberal arts, as well as basic management principles and business-oriented theories in the field.

This type of degree can help prepare students for entry-level employment in business and finance. The knowledge and skills obtained can also easily be transferred and applied to other professions. As a result, associate programs are particularly beneficial for students who are still undecided about their career goals. Graduates are typically qualified to work in management and administration roles within private, public, and non-profit organizations. They may also become management trainers, project assistances, office managers, sales representatives, or technology specialists.

Many graduates, however, choose to continue their educations by enrolling in bachelor’s degree programs. Most colleges and universities make it easy to transfer credits earned from regionally accredited institutions, often accepting up to 60 or 90 hours of coursework. This means those with associate’s degrees may enter four-year institutions as juniors with only two years of instruction remaining.

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Online Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration (BS)

Bachelor’s degrees in business administration generally consist of 120 credit hours of coursework that takes full-time students approximately four years to complete. As with associate degrees, most programs are comprised of both general education and major-specific classes. Students receive more liberal arts exposure while establishing a fundamental understanding of business. Instruction typically focuses on knowledge and skills development necessary to ensure successful careers in many industries. Those enrolled will learn about various business and management tools, as well as helpful finance concepts and technology.

Prospective students should also anticipate selecting concentrations. Many colleges and university also allow business administration students to specialize their coursework within the field. The most popular concentration areas offered generally include accounting, computer information systems, finance, and marketing.

This type of degree is often the minimum education requirement for professionals interested in business and finance professions. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, most related occupations expect candidates to have bachelor’s degrees. Some of the most common jobs obtained available include accountant, auditor, budget analyst, cost estimator, and human resource specialist. Graduates also tend to have more employment opportunities and are more competitive than those with only high school diplomas and/or associate degrees.

Many graduates, however, choose to pursue further education by enrolling in master’s degree programs. Those interested in graduate school should be prepared to meet minimum grade point average (GPA) requirements, as well as provide Graduate Examination Record (GRE) scores.

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Online Master's Degree in Business Administration (MS or MBA)

Master’s degrees in business administration generally consist of 30 credit hours of coursework that takes full-time students approximately two years to complete. Notably, some colleges and universities offer accelerated programs that can be completed in a matter of months. Unlike undergraduate degrees, these programs are comprised solely of classes relevant to the area of study. Some of the same topics may be covered, but in much greater depth. Students can also expect to learn more about functional business and organization operations.

In addition to possessing the knowledge and skills necessary to perform most basic business and finance functions, graduates are also often qualified for many leadership, management, and supervisory roles. Some of the most common employment opportunities include information technology manager, financial manager, industrial production manager, and management analyst.

It’s worth noting that the master of business administration (MBA) is one of the most popular degrees available in the United States. Obtaining an MBA can drastically increase employment opportunities, salary potential, marketability, career mobility, and job security.

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Online PhD Degree in Business Administration (PhD)

PhD and doctoral degrees in business administration generally consist of between 90 and 120 credit hours and take full-time students four to seven years to complete. In addition to classroom instruction, these programs usually require an extensive amount of independent study and research. Students must also write and defend dissertations before a board prior to graduation.

Very few professions in the field require a PhD degree. These are most relevant for individuals interested in conducting business research and/or becoming academic professors. Both of these options can be highly lucrative, however.

The doctorate of business administration (DBA), on the other hand, is designed to help current professionals expand their theoretical knowledge of business and business management. Graduates may qualify for advanced positions in upper management, as well as top executive jobs.

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Become a Business Administrator in Oregon

The first step to becoming a business administration professional in Oregon is determining your career goals. With so many possible professions available to graduates, narrowing your focus can make it easier to identify a clear career pathway. Not only will this help you select the most applicable degree program, but it ensures that you obtain all the required knowledge, skills, training, and experience to achieve your ideal profession.

While helpful, knowing you ultimate career preference is not necessary in order to enroll in a business administration degree program. Most curriculums expose students the various facets of the field and make it easy to change majors, add minors, and/or switch concentrations. Minors and concentrations, in particular, are great ways to explore additional interests and aptitudes. Many institutions offer several degree options that allow you to focus on a specific subsection of business or finance.

Some of the most common specializations and minors available include:

  • Entrepreneurship
  • Economics
  • Finance
  • Management
  • Marketing

Once you have obtained the necessary degree(s) in business administration, you can choose to pursue various professional credentials. There are many certifications and licenses that are relevant to this field. While these are not always necessary, obtaining one or more additional credentials can be extremely beneficial. Not only will they help you stand out among other job candidates, but they can lead to more employment opportunities, faster promotion, and higher pay potential.

There is no single, best certification for business administration professionals. Rather, those in the field are free to pursue credentials they feel will be most applicable and/or personally fulfilling. It’s important to note, however, that some employers do expect workers to have certain qualifications for specialized jobs. This is especially true for professions that are more technical in nature. As a result, you should always pay close attention to employment posting and descriptions prior to submitting applications.

Some business administration graduates may want to start their own businesses in Oregon. To do this, you will need to become familiar with the state’s rules and procedures. First and foremost, all new businesses must be registered. Resources are also available to prospective owners via Business Xpress, which offers information regarding planning, starting, managing, growing, changing, and closing businesses. While requirements vary, some other common expectations include securing financing, selecting a business structure, obtaining a federal tax identification number, and obtaining all necessary permits.

Potential Careers for Business Admin Graduates

  • Business Administration
    Those who earn business administration degrees may be qualified for a wide variety of employment opportunities in Oregon. Job expectations and salaries will vary, but some of the career options graduates will have access to include the following. Read More about Bookkeepers
  • Accounting Clerk
    Accounting clerks are responsible for providing administrative support to accountants, auditors, and other financial experts. These professionals typically perform various bookkeeping tasks, as well as input data, prepare reports, and reconcile accounts. They may also ensure clients’ financial information is properly tracked. According to PayScale, accounting associates make an average base salary of $48,80 per year. Read More about Accounting Clerks
  • Administrative Coordinator
    Administrative coordinators are responsible for providing budget management support and assistance to companies and organizations. These professionals frequently perform various clerical duties including databases maintenance, report creation, and letter composition, as well as organizing, supervising, and facilitating work assignment. They may also take on the task of hiring new employees. According to PayScale, administrative coordinators make an average base hourly rate of $18.56, or approximately $46,200 per year.
  • Bank Branch Manager
    Bank branch managers are responsible for supervising teams of employees assigned to specific bank branches. These professionals ensure that all client needs of are met while fostering good working relationships among staff members. They also often monitor banking expenses and manage branch budgets. According to PayScale, bank branch managers make an average base salary of $60,200 per year.
  • Bookkeeper
    Bookkeepers are responsible for accurately maintaining financial records for their employers. These professionals generally ensure and verify the viability of financial decisions by utilizing accounting software to track transactions. They also calculate, record, and balance payroll reports. According to PayScale, bookkeepers make an average base salary of $43,850 per year. Read More about Bookkeepers
  • Certified Professional Accountant (CPA)
    Certified Professional Accountants (CPAs) are responsible for ensuring that the individual clients, corporations, and government agencies they work for complete various financial processes correctly. These professionals often provide a number of services related to taxation, financial reporting, and auditing. They may also review financial information, prepare documentation, and verify all government regulations are being followed. According to PayScale, CPAs make an average base salary of $51,700 per year. Read More about CPA's
  • Digital Marketing Manager / Director
    Digital marketing managers and directors are responsible for creating new marketing projects that increase sales and brand loyalty among customers. These professionals supervise the process, ensuring that all advertising efforts are both efficient and effective. They may also implement and coordinate social and digital media campaigns by utilizing new media and digital marketing strategies. According to PayScale, digital marketing managers make an average base salary of $67,800 per year.
  • Financial Advisor
    Financial advisors are responsible for helping clients assess and monitor their financial needs while developing plans or strategies to meet various fiscal goals. These professionals often assist individuals, businesses, and/or corporations as they develop short and long-term objectives. They also coordinate with financial institutions that deal with various investment types. According to PayScale, financial advisors make an average base salary of $60,050 per year. Read More about Financial Advisors

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  • Project Manager
    Project managers are responsible for overseeing the projects assigned to them. These professionals establish project goals, timelines, and budgets, as well as dealing with any issues that may arise throughout the process. They also dispense important information to team members and coordinate, document, and assign additional tasks as needed. According to PayScale, project managers for non-profit organizations make an average base salary of $74,950 per year. Read More about Project Managers
  • Supply Chain Manager
    Supply chain managers are responsible for coordinating franchise supply chains. These professionals develop and maintain logistical and procedural policies to ensure that the process runs smoothly and efficiently. They also mediate between sales and customer service teams, as well as manage inventories based on customer demand. According to PayScale, supply chain managers make an average base salary of $83,950 per year. Read More about Supply Chain Managers

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