Operations Research Analysts

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About the Job

Formulate and apply mathematical modeling and other optimizing methods to develop and interpret information that assists management with decision making, policy formulation, or other managerial functions. May collect and analyze data and develop decision support software, service, or products. May develop and supply optimal time, cost, or logistics networks for program evaluation, review, or implementation.

It is also Called

  • Technical Analyst
  • Systems Consultant
  • Systems Analyst
  • Standards Analyst
  • SOC Analyst (Security Operations Center Analyst)
  • Security Operations Analyst
  • Sales Operations Analyst
  • Risk Analyst
  • Process Analyst
  • Procedure Writer
View All

What They Do

  • Develop business methods and procedures, including accounting systems, file systems, office systems, logistics systems, and production schedules.
  • Develop and apply time and cost networks to plan, control, and review large projects.
  • Specify manipulative or computational methods to be applied to models.
  • Educate staff in the use of mathematical models.
  • Design, conduct, and evaluate experimental operational models in cases where models cannot be developed from existing data.
  • Break systems into their components, assign numerical values to each component, and examine the mathematical relationships between them.
  • Observe the current system in operation and gather and analyze information about each of the parts of component problems, using a variety of sources.
  • Define data requirements and gather and validate information, applying judgment and statistical tests.
  • Prepare management reports defining and evaluating problems and recommending solutions.
  • Study and analyze information about alternative courses of action to determine which plan will offer the best outcomes.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: ICE.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Investigative interests, but also prefer Conventional and Enterprising environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Achievement, but also value Independence and Working Conditions in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Mathematics - Using mathematics to solve problems.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Education Required

Most of these occupations require graduate school. For example, they may require a master's degree, and some require a Ph.D., M.D., or J.D. (law degree).

Wages

In 2017, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $81,940 with most people making between $46,280 and $127,210

Outlook

2.75%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 2,870 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 3,660 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 79 openings due to growth and about 51 replacement openings for approximately 130 total annual openings.



Pennsylvania Department of Education