The 30 Best Business Jobs: Salary, Requirements and More

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Laura Berlinsky-Schine2.3k

Business is a diverse field that offers plenty of opportunities across a wide variety of niches. In fact, it’s one of the most multifaceted industries you can find. Whether you’re interested or talented in marketing, accounting, economics, finance or something else, you’re bound to find a niche that appeals to you.

Not only is this a varied field, but it’s also an extremely lucrative one. There are plenty of niches that have high earning potential, not only when you have years of experience — there are also plenty of positions that pay well at the entry level. We’ve rounded up some of the best jobs in business available today.

The 30 Best Jobs in Business 

1. Accountant

Annual salary: $73,560

Projected growth by 2029: 4% 

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Are numbers your thing? Accounting could be for you. In this role, you’ll maintain financial records for individual clients and businesses and make recommendations, all while ensuring legal and regulatory compliance. You can expand your responsibilities and increase your earning potential by earning the designation of Certified Public Accountant (CPA). This will, for example, allow you to represent clients who are audited by the IRS.

2. Actuary

Annual salary: $111,030

Projected growth by 2019: 18%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Here’s another one where a mind for numbers will get you far. Actuaries make informed predictions based on statistics and research to help businesses and individuals estimate the financial risk involved in different decisions and events. Using their knowledge and skills, they play a pivotal role in assisting clients or employers with their plans and financial growth.

3. Administrative services manager

Annual salary: $98,890

Projected growth by 2029: 6%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

The responsibilities for this position can vary significantly from business to business. The core functions of the role are to supervise and oversee administrative goings-on and operations, such as ensuring that the facilities of the business are properly maintained, keeping records, budgeting, managing the administrative staff, purchasing supplies and more. They must be extremely well organized and be excellent communicators in order to ensure that everything is working correctly.

4. Agent

Annual salary: $98,070

Projected growth by 2029: N/A

Degree/experience requirements: high school diploma (many agents have a bachelor’s degree)

Agents handle the business end of athletes, performing artists and other entertainers’ work. For example, they deal with contract negotiations and financial matters, as well as establish goals and benchmarks. For athletes, they work out sponsorships, while for performing artists, they might book venues and shows. Ultimately, they are responsible for helping clients maximize their profits, while acting as the middleman to advance their careers.

5. Budget analyst

Annual salary: $78,970

Projected growth by 2029: 3%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

As you might guess from the job title, a budget analyst is responsible for, well, analyzing company budgets. They help businesses with their finances, reviewing budgets, ensuring companies operate within their limitations, monitoring and forecasting spending and profits, assessing funding and making sure a company’s financial activities are compliant and legal.

6. Business development manager

Annual salary: $115,640

Projected growth by 2029: 7%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Business growth is central to the role of the business development manager. In this role, you’ll research new opportunities for your organization, identify leads, develop relationships for prospective clients and ultimately contribute to and advance your business’s goals. In order to help your business grow, you’ll be tasked with delving into key markets, looking into opportunities, trends, market demand and competitors.

7. Business journalist

Annual salary: $49,300

Projected growth by 2029: -11%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Business journalism is a great career path for strong writers and researchers with an interest in and knowledge of business. There are many publications specifically dedicated to the business world, such as The Wall Street Journal, and they need journalists with the skills to dive into this important sector. Business journalists often specialize in niches, such as real estate or finance.

8. Corporate attorney

Annual salary: $126,930 

Projected growth by 2029: 4%

Degree/experience requirements: JD

Corporate or business lawyers, as you might guess, use their law degree to focus on corporate law, often representing businesses in areas like contracts, mergers and acquisitions, bankruptcy and other business matters. Like other attorneys, professional specializing in this area of law must have exemplary communication, presentation, research, organizational, problem-solving and critical thinking skills in order to draft documents, counsel clients and represent their clients’ interests.

9. Cost estimator

Annual salary: $66,610

Projected growth by 2029: -1%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

How can businesses improve their spending patterns and find more cost-effective solutions to carry out their plans effectively? A cost estimator can help. In this role, you’ll estimate the money, time and effort it will take to complete a project. You’ll also advise businesses on how they can complete their projects more easily or cost-effectively. Cost estimators often specialize in particular industries or project types, such as construction. 

10. Economist

Annual salary: $108,350 

Projected growth by 2029: 14%

Degree/experience requirements: master’s degree

Economists are responsible for conducting research and predicting trends in the economy, using their knowledge of statistics to identify patterns, analyze risk and translate their information into a digestible format for their clients, employers and other audiences. They might focus on issues and topics like inflation, rent, product prices, the job market and other niches and areas.

11. Entrepreneur

Annual salary: varies

Projected growth by 2029: N/A

Degree/experience requirements: none

An increasingly popular career path in today’s world, entrepreneurship is the ideal choice for business-minded and innovative people. If your goal is to be an entrepreneur, you need to be creative and practical simultaneously. It’s about more than just having a great idea — although that’s certainly part of the equation — you also need to be able to plan out how to ground your idea in reality to make it successful, often partnering with other professionals to launch your startup. You don’t necessarily need a degree, although it can help you learn the knowledge you need to succeed.

12. Financial analyst

Annual salary: $83,660

Projected growth by 2029: 5%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

A financial analyst gathers financial data for businesses and performs an evaluation of critical information to glean insights and help organizations make important decisions to help them earn a greater profit. Often, they work at banking institutions, insurance companies and other businesses where monetary decisions are integral to the organization’s direction and future. Additionally, they pinpoint opportunities for the business to help them grow and thrive.

13. Financial manager

Annual salary: $134,180

Projected growth by 2029: 15%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

While a financial analyst looks at big-picture finances at an organization, a financial manager handles day-to-day financial matters, ensuring, for example, that the business is operating within its budget, as well as keeping track of spending and profits. They also produce detailed reports to keep executives and leaders up to date on all things finance within their companies and help them make decisions. In order to do their jobs well, these professionals must have strong attention to detail, excellent communication skills and a mind for numbers.

14. Fundraiser

Annual salary: $59,610

Projected growth by 2029: 14%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Working with nonprofits, such as healthcare facilities, colleges and universities, charities, political campaigns and others, fundraisers ensure organizations are properly funded so they can meet their goals. Fundraisers seek out monetary contributions from other organizations and individuals, spreading their message about the cause and encouraging people and organizations to donate. They also establish financial goals and benchmarks and develop campaigns to promote their causes and objectives to external audiences.

15. Health services manager

Annual salary: $104,280

Projected growth by 2029: 32% 

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

This job combines healthcare and business, two important fields. People in this role work in healthcare facilities, including hospitals, clinics, nursing homes and more, planning and overseeing the administrative aspects of these organizations. For example, they might be responsible for the recruitment of health professionals, creating schedules, budgeting, overseeing staff and maintaining records.

16. Human resources specialist

Annual salary: $63,490

Projected growth by 2019: 7%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Human resources (HR) specialists focus on different areas of businesses related to personnel — recruiting and interviewing talent and prospective hires, developing programs and activities to engage employees, managing and educating employees about benefit options, developing and implementing training programs, overseeing compensation matters and much more. 

17. Logistician

Annual salary: $76,270

Projected growth by 2019: 4%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s (sometimes an associate’s degree will be sufficient)

The role of a logistician is highly varied and complex. Overseeing companies’ supply chains, these professionals are responsible for coordinating activities like planning and managing the transportation of goods, monitoring the journeys of these products, forming relationships with suppliers, connecting all the moving pieces and searching for ways to improve the process.

18. Management consultant

Annual salary: $87,660

Projected growth by 2019: 11%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Also called management analysts, management consultants offer third-party assessments and opinions about matters like project strategies and business practices, offer objective, outside expertise and guidance on how to improve these organizations and their operations. Since they serve in consulting capacities, they work independently or with outside firms that businesses bring in to lend their guidance.

19. Marketing manager

Annual salary: $141,490

Projected growth by 2029: 6%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Marketing managers are key players within companies in practically every industry you can imagine. They are responsible for developing strategies to position, promote and advertise products and services, as well as analyze the results of their campaigns to improve and refine their strategies. While marketing professionals may have different responsibilities at different types of organizations, they may include social media advertising and campaigns, copywriting, brand management, developing promotional materials and more.

20. Market research analyst

Annual salary: $65,810

Projected growth by 2029: 18%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

The job of a market research analyst is related to marketing manager, although the two jobs are distinct. This position requires excellent research skills, as you can probably guess, so you can look into the demand for products and services, identify the customer base and come up with strategies for improving these products to better meet the needs of the organization’s target audience.

21. Operations manager

Annual salary: $66,524 (PayScale)

Projected growth by 2029: N/A

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

An operations manager is integral to directing and overseeing both the day-to-day and big-picture operations at an organization. This role is especially important at large companies that have a lot of moving pieces, but smaller businesses sometimes employ them, too. Planning, hiring procedures, operations strategy, production, reporting and budgeting for daily expenses are just some of the key responsibilities of this role, which often falls under the purview of human resources.

22. Operations research analyst

Annual salary: $86,200

Projected growth by 2029: 25%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

An operations research analyst, meanwhile, evaluates these operations to gather data about an organization’s goings-on. By performing this analysis, using statistical and research methods, someone in this role can find ways to improve and streamline operations, making the business’s procedures more efficient, less costly and overall more effective.

23. Personal financial advisor

Annual salary: $89,330

Projected growth by 2029: 4%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Personal financial advisors work with individuals to help them make informed decisions about their finances, including investments, retirement savings, pensions, insurance and more. As professionals in the finance world, these advisors stay up to date on tax laws and related regulations to ensure their clients are acting legally. They also counsel their clients on how to best meet their long- and short-term financial goals.

24. Product manager

Annual salary: $109,487

Projected growth by 2029: N/A 

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Product management sits at the cross-section of multiple areas, including marketing, technology, project management and several others. They perform research to come up with ideas for products, assess the feasibility of these ideas, facilitate development, market and position products and analyze the results to evaluate their success.

25. Project manager

Annual salary: $84,290

Projected growth by 2029: N/A

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Leveraging their organizational and planning skills, project managers are essential to their organizations, essentially playing a pivotal role in bringing projects to fruition. They are fundamental to every step in the process, including establishing goals and benchmarks, budgeting, keeping other members on track and creating a timeline. Some project managers specialize in certain areas, such as technology or construction. A certification, such as the Project Management Professional (PMP) designation, can help you advance your career.

26. Public relations manager

Annual salary: $118,430

Projected growth by 2029: 9%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

A publicist or public relations (PR) manager is tasked with cultivating and presenting their client’s — either an individual or organization’s — public image. They must have excellent communication skills in order to spread positive news about their client. They are tasked with developing relationships with news, media and press outlets to book engagements, including interviews and appearances, for their clients. They also write press releases to garner attention for clients.

27. Purchasing manager

Annual salary: $72,270

Projected growth by 2029: -7%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

In this finance-related profession, you’ll be in charge of purchasing goods and services for your organization. Sometimes leading teams, they work with suppliers and handle contract negotiations, as well as research business needs, pricing, quality, inventory and other aspects of products and services to make informed decisions about what their organizations need to grow.

28. Sales manager

Annual salary: $132,290

Projected growth by 2029: 4%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

The sales team plays a critical role in a variety of businesses in practically every sector. Sales managers lead the efforts of their teams as they establish contracts and sell products and services to earn the organization money and help them meet their financial goals. Sales is often a very lucrative profession, and usually, if you meet certain sales goals and benchmarks, you’ll have the potential to earn bonuses on top of already high base salaries.

29. Statistician

Annual salary: $93,290

Projected growth by 2029: 33%

Degree/experience requirements: master’s degree

Statisticians are masters of math. They leverage their skills to help organizations of different types — healthcare, government, banking, science and many others — solve concrete problems through statistical modeling. They perform research and gather data to inform their work, analyzing and interpreting the information to assist their employers with making better decisions that will allow their organizations to move forward. This is a highly in-demand role with great potential for growth.

30. Training and development manager

Annual salary: $115,640

Projected growth by 2029: 7%

Degree/experience requirements: bachelor’s degree

Often part of the human resources department, training and development managers play a crucial role in getting employees up to speed and ensuring everyone is knowledgeable about the company and its goings-on. These professionals assess needs and develop and implement new programs for employees to learn and grow. They also come up with ideas to better engage and motivate staff to boost morale and company productivity.

These are just some of the roles you can land in the business world, and in many cases, you don’t even need an MBA to succeed! 

About the Career Expert:

Laura Berlinsky-Schine is a freelance writer and editor based in Brooklyn with her demigod/lab mix Hercules. She specializes in education, technology and career development. She also writes satire and humor, which has appeared in Points in Case, Little Old Lady Comedy, Jane Austen’s Wastebasket and The Haven.