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Become A Policy Analyst

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Working As A Policy Analyst

  • Getting Information
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Analyzing Data or Information
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
  • Deal with People

  • Mostly Sitting

  • $68,991

    Average Salary

What Does A Policy Analyst Do

Management analysts, often called management consultants, propose ways to improve an organization’s efficiency. They advise managers on how to make organizations more profitable through reduced costs and increased revenues.

Duties

Management analysts typically do the following:

  • Gather and organize information about the problem to be solved or the procedure to be improved
  • Interview personnel and conduct onsite observations to determine the methods, equipment, and personnel that will be needed
  • Analyze financial and other data, including revenue, expenditure, and employment reports
  • Develop solutions or alternative practices
  • Recommend new systems, procedures, or organizational changes
  • Make recommendations to management through presentations or written reports
  • Confer with managers to ensure changes are working

Although some management analysts work for the organization that they analyze, most work as consultants on a contractual basis. 

Whether they are self-employed or part of a large consulting company, the work of a management analyst may vary from project to project. Some projects require a team of consultants, each specializing in one area. In other projects, consultants work independently with the client organization’s managers.

Management analysts often specialize in certain areas, such as inventory management or reorganizing corporate structures to eliminate duplicate and nonessential jobs. Some consultants specialize in a specific industry, such as healthcare or telecommunications. In government, management analysts usually specialize by type of agency.

Organizations hire consultants to develop strategies for entering and remaining competitive in today’s marketplace.

Management analysts who work on contract may write proposals and bid for jobs. Typically, an organization that needs the help of a management analyst solicits proposals from a number of consultants and consulting companies that specialize in the needed work. Those who want the work must then submit a proposal by the deadline that explains how the consultant will do the work, who will do the work, why they are the best consultants to do the work, what the schedule will be, and how much it will cost. The organization that needs the consultants then selects the proposal that best meets its needs and budget.

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How To Become A Policy Analyst

Most management analysts have at least a bachelor’s degree. The Certified Management Consultant (CMC) designation may improve job prospects.

Education

A bachelor’s degree is the typical entry-level requirement for management analysts. However, some employers prefer to hire candidates who have a master’s degree in business administration (MBA).

Few colleges and universities offer formal programs in management consulting. However, many fields of study provide a suitable education because of the range of areas that management analysts address. Common fields of study include business, management, economics, political science and government, accounting, finance, marketing, psychology, computer and information science, and English.

Analysts also routinely attend conferences to stay up to date on current developments in their field.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

The Institute of Management Consultants USA (IMC USA) offers the Certified Management Consultant (CMC) designation to those who meet minimum levels of education and experience, submit client reviews, and pass an interview and exam covering the IMC USA’s code of ethics. Management consultants with a CMC designation must be recertified every 3 years. Management analysts are not required to get certification, but it may give jobseekers a competitive advantage.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Many analysts enter the occupation with several years of work experience. Organizations that specialize in certain fields typically try to hire candidates who have experience in those areas. Typical work backgrounds include experience in management, human resources, and information technology. 

Advancement

As consultants gain experience, they often take on more responsibility. At the senior level, consultants may supervise teams working on more complex projects and become more involved in seeking out new business. Those with exceptional skills may eventually become partners in their consulting organization and focus on attracting new clients and bringing in revenue. Senior consultants who leave their consulting company often move to senior management positions at nonconsulting organizations.

Important Qualities

Analytical skills. Management analysts must be able to interpret a wide range of information and use their findings to make proposals.

Communication skills. Management analysts must be able to communicate clearly and precisely in both writing and speaking. Successful analysts also need good listening skills to understand the organization’s problems and propose appropriate solutions.

Interpersonal skills. Management analysts must work with managers and other employees of the organizations where they provide consulting services. They should work as a team toward achieving the organization’s goals. 

Problem-solving skills. Management analysts must be able to think creatively to solve clients’ problems. Although some aspects of different clients’ problems may be similar, each situation is likely to present unique challenges for the analyst to solve.

Time-management skills. Management analysts often work under tight deadlines and must use their time efficiently to complete projects on time.

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Policy Analyst Jobs

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Policy Analyst Career Paths

Policy Analyst
Senior Analyst Operations Manager Supply Chain Manager
Business Process Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Deputy Director Adjunct Professor Information Technology Project Manager
Business Program Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Deputy Director Operations Director
Chief Of Staff
7 Yearsyrs
Assistant Director Account Manager Client Services Manager
Client Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Marketing Manager Account Director
Client Services Director
9 Yearsyrs
Attorney Compliance Officer Compliance Manager
Compliance Director
12 Yearsyrs
Business Analyst Information Technology Project Manager Program Manager
Deputy Director
9 Yearsyrs
Senior Consultant Information Technology Project Manager Information Technology Director
Director Of Information Management
11 Yearsyrs
Communications Director Director Of Human Resources Talent Acquisition Manager
Global Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Analyst Assistant Vice President
Manager, Assistant Vice President
7 Yearsyrs
Program Coordinator Business Analyst Senior Analyst
Manager, Strategy
8 Yearsyrs
Attorney Office Manager Practice Manager
Practice Director
12 Yearsyrs
Adjunct Professor Senior Software Engineer Senior Analyst
Research Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Analyst Finance Analyst Finance Manager
Senior Finance Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Office Administrator Contracts Administrator Subcontracts Manager
Senior Managed
7 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Product Manager Operations Manager
Senior Operations Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Assistant Director Office Manager Executive Assistant To Chief Executive Officer
Special Projects Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Program Coordinator Writer And Editor Social Media Manager
Strategist
7 Yearsyrs
Program Manager Human Resources Manager Assistant Vice President
Vice President And Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Senior Consultant Senior Specialist Assistant Vice President
Vice President-Products
13 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Policy Analyst?

Policy Analyst Demographics

Gender

Female

52.7%

Male

43.4%

Unknown

3.9%
Ethnicity

White

57.7%

Black or African American

14.2%

Hispanic or Latino

13.7%

Asian

9.9%

Unknown

4.6%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

38.7%

French

18.8%

German

5.9%

Russian

5.2%

Chinese

5.2%

Arabic

4.8%

Mandarin

4.1%

Korean

3.7%

Italian

3.7%

Japanese

3.3%

Portuguese

1.5%

Turkish

1.1%

Swahili

0.7%

Dutch

0.7%

Greek

0.7%

Swedish

0.4%

Lakota

0.4%

Hindi

0.4%

Hmong

0.4%

Indonesian

0.4%
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Policy Analyst Education

Schools

George Washington University

12.8%

Georgetown University

9.0%

American University

7.6%

University of Texas at Austin

6.4%

University of Phoenix

5.4%

New York University

5.2%

George Mason University

5.2%

Johns Hopkins University

5.2%

Harvard University

4.5%

University of California - Berkeley

4.0%

University of Maryland - College Park

4.0%

University of Southern California

4.0%

University of Maryland - Baltimore

3.8%

Cornell University

3.5%

University of Chicago

3.5%

Duke University

3.3%

Northeastern University

3.3%

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

3.3%

Florida State University

3.1%

Northwestern University

2.8%
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Majors

Law

14.1%

Political Science

13.5%

Business

11.8%

Public Administration

8.4%

Public Policy Analysis

6.0%

International Relations

5.4%

Public Health

4.4%

Economics

4.2%

Finance

3.9%

Urban Planning

3.1%

Management

3.1%

Social Work

3.0%

Legal Research And Advanced Professional Studies

2.9%

Environmental Science

2.9%

Health Care Administration

2.5%

Psychology

2.4%

History

2.2%

English

2.1%

Communication

2.1%

Accounting

2.1%
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Degrees

Masters

45.8%

Bachelors

23.5%

Doctorate

15.2%

Other

9.8%

Certificate

3.2%

Associate

2.0%

Diploma

0.3%

License

0.1%
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Real Policy Analyst Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Policy Analyst Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, LLP Washington, DC Dec 15, 2016 $140,000
Accounting Policy Lead Analyst Citibank, N.A. Islandia, NY Sep 01, 2015 $120,000
Policy Analyst McGuirewoods LLP Jacksonville, FL Sep 23, 2015 $98,000
Policy Analyst McGuirewoods Consulting LLC Jacksonville, FL Sep 27, 2015 $98,000
Risk Policy Analyst Citicorp Credit Services, Inc. (USA) Wilmington, DE Jan 09, 2016 $93,500
Project Policy Analyst 3 University of California, Berkeley Berkeley, CA Mar 01, 2015 $92,316
Project Policy Analyst University of California, Berkeley Berkeley, CA Jan 13, 2016 $92,316
Global Financial Policies Analyst Hanesbrands Inc. Winston-Salem, NC May 12, 2016 $90,938
Risk Policy Analyst Citicorp Credit Services, Inc. (USA) Wilmington, DE Dec 09, 2016 $90,000
Data and Policy Analyst IV Acumen, LLC Washington, DC Apr 09, 2016 $89,003 -
$105,000
Global Financial Policies Analyst Hanesbrands Inc. Winston-Salem, NC Aug 16, 2016 $87,750
Data and Policy Analyst IV The Sphere Institute Burlingame, CA Apr 09, 2016 $85,862 -
$105,000
Project Policy Analyst University of California, Berkeley Berkeley, CA Apr 01, 2015 $85,000
Policy Analyst Immigrant Investors Association, Inc. Washington, DC Jan 09, 2016 $74,194
Mobile Source Emissions Policy Analyst Jack Faucett Associates, Inc. Bethesda, MD Sep 01, 2015 $70,228
Policy Analyst Immigrant Investors Association, Inc. Washington, DC Sep 01, 2015 $70,158
Data and Policy Analyst III The Sphere Institute Burlingame, CA Apr 09, 2016 $70,000 -
$95,000
Policy Analyst Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy Washington, DC Jun 24, 2015 $68,349
Data and Policy Analyst I The Sphere Institute Burlingame, CA Jun 20, 2016 $67,683 -
$75,000
Data and Policy Analyst II The Sphere Institute Burlingame, CA May 27, 2016 $67,683 -
$85,000
Education Policy Analyst American Learning Foundation, Inc. Alhambra, CA Jan 09, 2016 $55,306
Policy Analyst International Peace Institute New York, NY Feb 22, 2016 $55,000
Policy Analyst International Peace Institute New York, NY Apr 27, 2015 $55,000
Aviation Policy Analyst Eno Transportation Foundation, Inc. Washington, DC Apr 01, 2015 $53,144
International Nuclear Policy Analyst Federation of American Scientists Washington, DC Jan 12, 2016 $53,000
Policy Analyst Aprise Incorporated Princeton, NJ Nov 30, 2016 $52,000
Environmental Policy Analyst Utah Clean Energy Alliance, Inc. Salt Lake City, UT Sep 01, 2015 $50,045
Data and Policy Analyst I The Sphere Institute Burlingame, CA Oct 11, 2016 $50,000 -
$75,000

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Top Skills for A Policy Analyst

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  1. Procedures
  2. Compliance
  3. Health Care
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Developed the National Background Identity and Security Checks Operating Procedures with subject matter experts responsible for background check procedures.
  • Developed Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) report to identify environmental compliance requirements.
  • Analyzed health care policy and managed large Federal projects for non-profit health systems research and consulting organization.
  • Reviewed annual operating plans and quarterly financial statements to ensure agency compliance with governor and legislative directives.
  • Leveraged professional relationships to develop and advance strategic planning and stakeholder engagement -- e.g.

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