How to Become an International Business Analyst

Career Path Guide

Although there are several paths you can take to become an international business analyst, a very effective route for entering this profession is to follow these general steps:


1. Determine if this profession is suited to your personality and professional interests

2. Pursue a bachelor’s degree in international business, or a similar field

3. Get work experience in business wherein you’ll manage employees, promote strategies and manage projects

4. Get a permanent job in an industry that interests you after graduation

5. Earn an MBA in international business or a related field

6. Advance into roles of greater responsibility and pay as you gain experience


Read on below to learn more about what it takes to become an international business analyst!



What Experience Will I Need to Work in this Field?

Employers typically prefer to hire experienced candidates with a successful track record in the employer’s area of operations or industry. Such experience could include:


• Experience managing employees including setting goals, monitoring progress and assessing performance

• Experience in conducting analysis and the formulation and preparation of advice and recommendations

• Experience in promoting strategies and/or project coordination/management 


Success Tip: Typically, the more education you have, the less experience you will need, and vice-versa; one can be hard to gain without the other though, so a bachelor’s degree is typically considered the minimum entry requirement in this field. 



What Education Will I Need?

To become an international business analyst, you typically need at least a bachelor’s degree in economics, business, commerce, accounting, finance, marketing or a similar field, preferably with a specialization in international business. 


Some employers however, will prefer that you have a master’s degree in one of these areas, or a specialized professional degree, such as a law degree.





What is an International Business Analyst?

An international business analyst is a trade specialist that completes business cases for their organization’s entry into new geographic markets. They are responsible for the research and validation of country specific regulations, as well as assisting with the management of their organization’s initial operations in a new country.



What Do They Do?

Although their duties can vary from job to job, international business analysts are generally responsible for the following:


• Researching laws, regulations, culture and business environment of proposed international business destinations

• Preparing business cases for proposed entry into new geographic markets

• Documenting and publishing operational processes, connectivity models, local regulations and project status updates

• Managing relationships with international suppliers and vendors

• Conferring with regional staff and providing recommendations to management regarding how processes and the customer experience can be improved

• Assisting in project management duties concerning international projects



What Skills Will I Need?

To become an international business analyst, you will need a very diverse set of skills and competencies. As a foundation, will need a practical understanding of financial analysis, and economic theory.


You will also need an awareness of the nuances of international trade, such as differences in taxation, financial, legal and regulatory obligations, as well as cultural practices.


Some supplementary skills that you will need include advanced computer literacy skills, including the ability to use computers/software for data compilation, data analysis and modeling, developing spreadsheets, and preparing presentation material. And of course, second language skills are always an asset in international business.





Is This a Good Career Choice for Me?

Before diving into this career, it’s important to internally reflect to determine if working in this field will be well-suited to your personal characteristics and professional ambitions. If the following traits, interests and attributes describe you, then you might be very well-suited for a career as an international business analyst:


• You’re willing to constantly learn and stay abreast with developments in the field

• You have enthusiasm for working on large-scale projects

• You have a natural aptitude for working with numbers

• You have an interest in traveling internationally for work

• You’re comfortable preparing reports and presenting them to others

• You’re willing to do a significant amount of research in regards to foreign trade programs, taxation, import and export laws, environmental regulations, and more

• You’re interested in a career that draws heavily from a variety of disciplines, including math, computer science, economics, introductory business, foreign language, political science and finance



How Much do International Business Analysts Earn?

Unfortunately, there is no salary information available from government sources for “International Business Analysts”. We can however, get a good idea of what you could earn by looking at the salary of workers in closely related fields:


Salary in Alberta: According to the 2019 Wage and Salary Survey (Government of Alberta) Albertans working as part of the “Business development officers and marketing researchers and consultants” occupational group earn an overall average salary of $91,736 per year.


Salary in British Columbia: According to Work BC (Province of British Columbia), the annual provincial median salary of workers in “Business development officers and marketing researchers and consultants” occupational group is $66,664.


Please Note: The salary you could earn as an international business analyst can depend on several factors, such as:


• The size and type of your employer

• The region in which you work

• Whether you work in the public or private sector, or are self-employed

• Your level of education and experience 

• The amount of responsibility involved in your position

• And many other factors



Who Creates Jobs in This Field?

International business analysts are typically employed by organizations that are interested in selling products or services to new markets, such organizations include:


• Medium and large-sized companies in almost any industry (from banking to sports to retail)

• Municipal, regional and federal government agencies (such as tourism, forestry and many other departments)



International Business Analyst Jobs

Our job board below has a listing of "International Business Analyst" postings in your area of Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom or Australia.




What Career Advancement Options Are There?

If you develop a reputation for being competent, hard-working and dedicated, you will have several career advancement options become available to you. For example, with enough experience and skill you might:


• Receive increases in pay and responsibility 

• Move into various management positions

• Move from the private sector to the public sector, or vice-versa

• Become a self-employed consultant, or start a consulting company

• Move into a similar position with a higher-grossing company



What Professions Are Similar to This?

Listed below are careers that may be in the same field, or they may involve many of the same skills, competencies and/or responsibilities as “international business analyst”:


Business Analyst

• Business Development Officer


• Economic Development Officer

• Financial Analyst

• Intergovernmental Relations Coordinator

• International Trade Specialist

• Management Analyst

• Market Research Analyst

• Trade Commissioner



What Scholarships Are There for Aspiring International Business Analysts? 

The “Relevant University Majors” section below lists fields of study that are relevant to becoming an international business analyst. You can search for relevant scholarships by finding those majors on our "International Business Scholarships” page. 


Success Tip: Apply for any and all scholarships that you even barely qualify for; there are MILLIONS of dollars of scholarships that go unused every year due to a lack of applicants...not just a lack of fully qualified applicants!



Sources for This Career Guide

The following resources were used to gather information for this “How to Become an International Business Analyst” career path guide:


Wages & Salaries in Alberta:Business development officers and marketing researchers and consultants.” (March 31, 2019). ALIS website - Alberta Learning Information Service. Retrieved February 9, 2020.

Explore Careers:Business development officers and marketing researchers and consultants.” (July 5, 2018). WorkBC website. Retrieved February 9, 2020.

Explore Careers:Business Analyst.” (January, 2018). National Careers Service website. Retrieved December 27, 2019.

Article:How to Become a Business Analyst.” (November 14, 2019) New Horizons Computer Learning Centers website. Retrieved December 27, 2019.


Please Note: Much of the information used for this career guide was obtained from actual job postings, which due to the brief nature of their online publication presence aren’t listed here as references. 



Relevant University Majors

We have career guides for over 60 university majors in our database. Below we've outlined those that are most relevant to becoming an international business analyst. Click on the links to see what else you can do with these majors!


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