Allied Health Offers Opportunities for Business Professionals

This infographic on the boom in allied health careers highlights the fastest growing health fields over the next decade. What isn’t shown is the opportunities that exist for business professionals within the healthcare industry. According to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics data the number of healthcare administration jobs should increase by 22% and healthcare management is projected to add almost 70,000 jobs by 2020.

Allied Health Careers
Infographic by U.S. News University Directory, your source for the Best Allied Health Programs Online.


Education Pays – Especially for Small Business Owners!

Education Pays for Small Business OwnersIs it possible to invest in learning new tricks of the trade during these tough economic times? In fact, now might be an excellent time to learn applied business strategies if you do so with a focused plan. A wise small business owner makes complex decisions every day while persevering in business. By investing in yourself, you may gain a greater foothold in this challenging market, and those who can survive hard times are ready to seize prosperity when it arrives.

Business Administration Courses—Do They Actually Work for the Small Business Owner?

Some small business owners are lone wolves who believe in discovering new trails on their own while other more social creatures gladly participate in workshops and classes. For both types of people (and everyone in between), a wise approach could be a well-researched business administration course or training program. Small business courses succeed when they answer specific goals that you need, especially when your own interest is peaked.  Rather than simply waiting for the economy to change, think about the aspect of business that you wish to improve and look for targeted business administration courses which address those topics.

Investing in Yourself—A Realistic Look at the ROI

After choosing your specific target goal, take some extra time to really analyze the ROI. Think about a place where you tend to lose time regularly (most of us have one), and choose a business administration course that answers this need in a direct way while suiting your personality—so that you can enjoy yourself while advancing your skills. Though one of your strengths may lie in innovative marketing strategies, perhaps the best course for you could be a small business accounting class that will teach you how to save time and frustration in managing your accounts. Conversely, if money management is an aspect of business that you have already perfected, learning new marketing tips or business planning techniques may provide the most effective ROI. When you find that 10 hours/week on a task decreases to 5 hours/week because of your new knowledge and increased efficiency, you can see a clear ROI value.

How to Do it All—Maintain a Business and Invest in the Future

Many small business owners choose to take online business administration courses. There is more than one benefit to this. Of course, you are able to save the time you would have invested in a commute to a campus. You’re also able to engage in parts of the class (if not all of it) as your own schedule allows. One other benefit is simply to use the latest technology in your training. Most small businesses have an online presence, and many are pursuing innovative tracks to increase their business to the nationwide or global level. By engaging in a business administration course online, you may gain interesting insights into interactive, web-based options you have not yet pursued.

While your business may be standing firm in spite of the economic downturn, you can still prepare yourself to take it to a new level. By making clear and well-researched choices in your continuing education, you can guarantee your own ROI and give your business a boost. You can invest in yourself not to pass the time, but to optimize it.

Customer Relationship Management

Many of us are familiar with the idea of a customer-centric approach to business. In fact, we can experience the benefits of this business philosophy in daily activities ranging from the experience at the grocery store to the customer service call that turns out, unexpectedly, to be pleasant. There is good news for those who are interested in managing business organizations such that customer needs are truly met. Jobs in the field of customer relationship management are in demand.

What is Customer Relationship Management?

Customer Relationship Management, or CRM, refers to a business policy designed to reduce costs and increase profit by securing the loyalty of customers. Some people associate CRM with software programs that record information about customers and allow businesses to offer discounts according to that information. An example of this is for a business to provide a free item or discount on a customer’s birthday. However, the customer-centric approach is as old as business itself. Long before IT swept the modern world, wise business owners used various methods to research their customers’ habits; they also encouraged front-line salespeople to create trustworthy, personable relationships with the clientele. In today’s competitive business world, customer relationship management involves complex processes that must be accepted company-wide in order to succeed.

Why CRM Matters Now and in the Future

CRM involves both macro and micro-management in order to be effective. Though CRM entails befriending the clientele, there are serious choices involved in exactly which methods will cause the majority of customers to truly respond and maintain their loyalty. Although some small businesses spend only a few hundred per month in basic CRM strategy, large companies may spend millions in order to select and initiate a CRM plan. One of the key challenges can lie in implementation. In spite of large sums being spent in the process, if those who directly interact with customers are not clearly aware of how to project the company’s philosophy, the plan can fall flat. Also, due to the success of CRM in recent years, there is increased competition among businesses which further complicates developing a wise plan. In future, customer relationship management will increasingly consider the consumer’s neighborhood of business in order to discover a fruitful niche.

Where Can I Find Jobs in CRM?

Businesses in all fields that have direct customer relationships have the need for CRM. This means that the prospective job availability is spread across the country and involves many different types of businesses including banks, retailers and technological companies. Some businesses will emphasize the software side of CRM while others will focus on customer service, and many will require both aspects. In 2012, CRM jobs are expected to be in demand, and growth in this field is likely to continue.

How Can I Prepare for CRM Opportunities?

In choosing a regionally accredited school, you will want to consider an associate’s degree, a bachelor’s degree and/or a master’s degree. The associate’s degree involves a two-year program which works well for those who are not sure if they want to fully invest in the field before giving it a try. However, this degree does limit graduates to junior or entry-level positions. A bachelor’s degree requires four years and allows for a standard starting salary in the field as well as some opportunity for advancement. To secure high level employment in this field, a master’s degree is beneficial. This equates to two additional years following completion of the bachelor’s, six years of educational training in total. A master’s degree can help you to begin your employment at a higher salary and facilitates your ability to apply for increasingly higher levels jobs within the company.

Customer Relationship Management and You

CRM is likely to bring interesting challenges in upcoming years as companies compete using new technological platforms. If the customer-centric approach to business appeals to you, now may be a great time to leap into this established, yet growing field. Those with expertise in customer relations will always be needed in business. Those who understand both people and technology will have many intriguing opportunities in the future.

Commercial Contract Management Careers

Contract management careers can be very challenging and engaging. They can also be highly lucrative, particularly if you have attained National Contract Management Association (NCMA) certification.

There are many different positions available in this field, and you have the opportunity to work with a variety of different organizations and industries. Whether you are a veteran contract manager looking to expand your experience or a relative newcomer interested in learning more about contract management careers, you should familiarize yourself with all of the opportunities available for employment and advancement in this diverse and exciting specialty.

Contract Management Careers

Earn a Contract Management Certification

NCMA Certification and Contract Management

Government Contract Management Careers

Whether the government is your employer or customer, government contract jobs can be challenging, rewarding and very lucrative. Coordinating business relationships between government agencies and outside contractors is extremely intricate and regulated work, which is why skilled and certified contract managers are in demand for a variety of positions in this field.

Government Contract Careers

Government Contracting

How to Obtain a Government Contract

What is Government Contracting?

Business Analysis Career Path

Today’s Business Analyst

The 21st century business analyst’s world is multifaceted. As a mediator, moderator, connector and ambassador, the business analyst must bring the business needs together with IT resources. Successful business analysts tend to be clear communicators, smooth facilitators, precise analyzers and team players.

Plus, the ideal analyst has the versatility of various business functions, such as operations, finance, engineering, technology or architecture. Jay Michael, a business analyst for Colfax, agrees that the business analyst role is fuzzy at many companies.

He says, “I usually describe what a BA does by telling people I am a bridge between business systems from the end user to functional implementation of technical solutions. But when you tell somebody that they look at you like ’OK, what do you really do?’”

What Does a Business Analyst Do?

As you explore the business analyst career path, you’ll need to clear up the confusion and learn about the many hats business analysts wear. From being a good communicator and data analyzer to possessing project management and technical skills, business analysts regularly use a variety of techniques.

They are the bridge that fills in the gap between each department throughout every step of development. Modern Analyst identifies several characteristics that make up the role of a business analyst as follows:

  • The analyst works with the business to identify opportunities for improvement in business operations and processes
  • The analyst is involved in the design or modification of business systems or IT systems
  • The analyst interacts with the business stakeholders and subject matter experts in order to understand their problems and needs
  • The analyst gathers, documents, and analyzes business needs and requirements
  • The analyst solves business problems and, as needed, designs technical solutions
  • The analyst documents the functional and, sometimes, technical design of the system
  • The analyst interacts with system architects and developers to ensure the system is properly implemented
  • The analyst may help test the system and create system documentation and user manuals

Project Manager Career Path

Project Manager Jobs and Salaries Are on the Rise

A recent PMI report indicates that 25% of companies that have reduced their headcounts in other specialties will still be hiring project managers, while an Anderson Economic Group study projected that approximately 1.2 million project management jobs will need to be filled each year through 2016.

The availability of open positions is just part of the appeal of a project management career path; the substantial salaries are another enticement. reports that IT Project Managers typically earn between $74,299 and $103,710 a year. PMI’s annual salary survey indicates that those with industry certification – such as the Project Management Professional (PMP®) designation – earn upwards of $100,000 annually.

Career opportunities and potential earnings are two of the most important factors that individuals must consider before choosing a career path, and the field of project management scores well on both points.

Project Managers Have a Place in Every Industry

Professionals who have embarked on a project management career path possess skills that can be used in virtually any industry – from information technology to consumer goods to business services. This career mobility ensures that project managers can readily find work, even if their current industry is affected by an economic downturn or cyclical demand.

Skills Required for a Project Manager Career Path

Before embarking on a project manager career path, you need to ask yourself whether or not you have a passion and aptitude for this type of work. If you’re up to the challenge overseeing the contributions of a diverse team and managing the expectations of key stakeholders, this may be the position for you.

A project manager career path requires strong communication and organizational skills, the ability to juggle multiple tasks simultaneously and an understanding of the functional roles of departments throughout the organization.

Project Management Training and Education

The first step in becoming a project manager is to get the right education. You don’t necessarily need a degree in project management, but you do need to have specialized training. Industry certification will give you an even greater edge in securing the best positions.

When evaluating your training options, consider what will make your résumé stand apart from the competition. A credential from an accredited university shows that you are serious about a project manager career path. The good news is that with the widespread availability of online programs, location is no longer a limitation.

Villanova University has made a name for itself as the leading provider of project management education online through its acclaimed video-based e-learning platform. Ranked by U.S. News & World Report as the #1 university in the Master’s category/North region for nearly two decades, Villanova offers a variety of project management certificate courses 100% online, as well as multi-course master certificate programs.

Students can earn a Master Certificate in IS/IT Project Management or Applied Project Management, both of which prepare participants to pass the CAPM® or PMP® certification exam. Those who have completed a master certificate or hold professional certification can go on to earn an Advanced Master Certificate in IS/IT Project Management or Applied Project Management.

Embark on Your Project Manager Career Path

Project management training and industry certification can help professionals land their first project manager position. Over time, successful project managers will be assigned projects of increasing size and complexity.

Those who prove themselves on the job and demonstrate a commitment to continuous learning have excellent advancement potential. Take the first steps toward a project manager career path today, and you’ll be on your way toward a wealth of job opportunities, a lucrative salary and genuine long-term career satisfaction.