Although some employers prefer to hire applicants with a master’s degree or a PhD, many entry-level positions are available for those with a bachelor’s degree. Since few schools offer bachelor’s or advanced degree programs in operations research, analysts typically have degrees in other quantitative fields, such as computer science, industrial engineering, or mathematics.

In planning course work, it's important to realize that operations research is interdisciplinary, often drawing solutions from engineering, logic, psychology, and other social and political sciences. For this reason, a well rounded scientific background can also prove very useful.

Once an individual is established, there are plenty of opportunities for advancement in this profession. Options include becoming a senior analyst or a technical lead for a team of analysts.

What are Operations Research Analysts like?


Based on our pool of users, operations research analysts tend to be predominately investigative people. Take our career test to see what career interest category best describes you.

Operations Research Analysts by Strongest Interest Archetype

Based on sample of 211 Sokanu users

Are Operations Research Analysts happy?


Operations research analysts rank among the least happy careers. Overall they rank in the 21st percentile of careers for satisfaction scores.

Operations Research Analyst Career Satisfaction by Dimension

Percentile among all careers

Education History of Operations Research Analysts

The most common degree held by operations research analysts is Economics. 7% of operations research analysts had a degree in economics before becoming operations research analysts. That is over 2 times the average across all careers. Psychology graduates are the second most common among operations research analysts, representing 7% of operations research analysts in the Sokanu user base, which is 1.0 times the average.

Operations Research Analyst Education History

This table shows which degrees people earn before becoming an Operations Research Analyst, compared to how often those degrees are obtained by people who earn at least one post secondary degree.

Degree % of operations research analysts % of population Multiple
Economics 7.1% 3.8% 1.8×
Psychology 6.6% 6.8% 1.0×
Business Management And Administration 5.7% 6.5% 0.9×
Mathematics 5.2% 1.8% 2.8×
Political Science 3.8% 2.9% 1.3×
Statistics And Decision Science 3.3% 0.3% 10.4×
Finance 2.8% 2.0% 1.4×
Industrial Engineering 2.4% 0.3% 7.3×
Environmental Science 1.9% 1.1% 1.8×
Business 1.9% 2.4% 0.8×
Marketing And Marketing Research 1.9% 2.2% 0.9×
International Business 1.9% 1.0% 1.9×
Applied Mathematics 1.9% 0.4% 5.2×
English Literature 1.9% 4.9% 0.4×
Accounting 1.4% 1.7% 0.8×
Human Resources 1.4% 1.0% 1.4×
Mathematics Teacher Education 1.4% 0.3% 5.2×
Mechanical Engineering 1.4% 1.6% 0.9×
Community And Public Health 1.4% 0.8% 1.7×
Public Policy 1.4% 0.4% 3.9×
International Relations 1.4% 1.5% 0.9×

Operations Research Analyst Education Levels

70% of operations research analysts have a master's degree. 30% of operations research analysts have a bachelor's degree.

No education 0%
High school diploma 0%
Associate's degree 0%
Bachelor's degree 30%
Master's degree 70%
Doctorate degree 0%

How to Become an Operations Research Analyst

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