What Can You Do with an Associate's Degree in Business Management?
Business drives the economy. There's no doubt about it—the business field impacts everyone. Every business, from small, mom-and-pop shops to billion-dollar tycoons, contributes to the shifting of the economy, taxes paid and even the price of milk on a supermarket shelf.
The benefits of further education
You've got your high school diploma in hand, so what's next? Obviously, a college degree. But does it have to be an advanced degree in order to possibly land a decent business career?
A formal education can help equip you with the business skills and know-how needed for a wide variety of careers within the business management or business administration fields.
So, it's no wonder you're considering going back to school to study business management. But you're not quite sure if you're interested in committing to a four-year degree program to earn a bachelor's degree. Even a two-year degree program might feel lengthy.
An Associate's degree in Business Management is usually earned in as few as 18 months.1
Lucky for you, there is another option. Our Associate’s degree in Business Management can provide the foundational knowledge on which to build a possible career, and you can earn it in as few as 18 months.1
You can even complete the entire Associate's degree program online.
If this sounds like the winning scenario you've been seeking, then keep reading to learn more about the value of our Business Management Associate's degree program.
Is an Associate’s degree in Business Management actually worth it?
You may be thinking this sounds too good to be true. After all, you can't really land a decent business job without a bachelor's degree in business first, right? Wrong! An Associate's degree in Business may also lead to good career outcomes, and one of them is business management.
The truth is that earning an Associate's degree in Business Management may help improve your job prospects and your earning potential.
Associate's degree-holder statistics
We used real-time job analysis software to examine 1.6 million business job postings from the past year.
The data revealed that associate's degree holders were eligible for at least 100,000 more job postings than those with a high school diploma.2
There are many potential jobs and career options that you may potentially land with an associate degree in business management. Additionally, in 2021, associate's degree holders earned an average of $8,000 more annually than those with only a high school diploma, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).3
What will you learn in a Business Management Associate's degree program?
If this is all sounding good to you, you're probably curious about what type of knowledge and training you'll acquire from an online Associate's degree in Business Management.
Our Associate's degree in Business Management was designed to equip you with the background and business acumen needed to pursue a variety of business positions and to broaden your business knowledge.
Online courses in our Associate's degree program in Business Management
Here are just a few of the classes you can expect as you embark on your Business education journey:
- Principles of Finance
- Intro to Business Analysis and Intelligence
- Intro to Human Resource Management
- Intro to Functional and Project Management
- Customer Service
This versatile curriculum (which also includes general education courses) helps Associate’s students enrolled in classes to establish a well-rounded skillset including, basic business principles, management principles, management theories, marketing strategies, interpersonal communication, human resources and other disciplines that can serve as a solid foundation.
It's up to you to decide how you want to apply this practical knowledge in the business world.
Jobs you might possibly land with an Associate's degree in Business Management
Now that you know there are shorter and viable educational paths to potentially fulfill your career ambitions by earning a Business degree, you're probably curious about what jobs you might possibly land with an Associate's degree in Business Management.
You'll be happy to hear that there are several positions that call for these types of business skills taught in our Business programs.
Analysis of today's business environment
To help give you a better idea, we analyzed more than 155,000 job postings from the last year that called for a Business Management Associate's degree.4
The data helped us identify 10 common entry-level business positions in this field for holders of a Business Associate's degree.
1. Administrative assistant
Administrative assistants have been known as secretaries for years, but these days the titles are interchangeable. Whichever title you go with, the person doing the job has an impact on business operations.
They typically report to upper-level management positions, answer phone calls, schedule meetings and appointments, prepare invoices and manage incoming and outgoing mail.
These employees must be organized and detail-oriented, as they are responsible for a variety of clerical tasks that keep businesses running smoothly.
2. Relationship banker
A relationship banker handles a client's entire relationship with a bank. From loans and personal accounts to trust funds and investments, and other financial management tasks, these bankers have a wide range of knowledge about the products and services a bank offers.
They can provide great customer service by answering clients' questions and helping them make the right decision for their finances. They are the central point of contact for clients, and they often work with businesses to help manage more complicated accounts.
You might be thinking you need to seek a bachelor's degree in business administration for a banking job, but no—an associate’s degree in business will usually be all that is needed.
3. Customer service associate
It's right there in the title—customer service associates are all about serving the customer.
Whether it's listening to a customer's questions or concerns, placing orders, providing information about products and services or recording details of customer contact information, these business professionals are at their best when they're helping those visiting or contacting their store.
Patience and understanding go far in this position, because customer service associates are often listening to customer complaints and working to solve them.
4. Assistant store manager
Assistant store managers have the best of both worlds. While they don't have the entire responsibility and performance of the store on their shoulders as a head store manager does, they still have a lot of the privileges and duties that come with a retail management position.
These professionals typically train employees, create work schedules, evaluate competing stores, order inventory, construct display windows and attend educational workshops.
They also assist customers and set a good example for the rest of the team.
5. Sales support specialist
Unlike sales associates, a sales support specialist usually focuses on sales-related issues, like providing help-desk support in person, on the phone or via online chat.
In addition to helping with current clients, sales support specialists are often tasked with the “pre-work” of a sales cycle—market research, cold calling and preparing materials for the sales team are just a few examples. Additionally, a sales support specialist will update client records and assist with unique customer requests.
6. Store manager
As a store manager, the buck stops with you. Store managers direct sales teams by setting sales goals, analyzing data and developing training programs for new and existing employees.
They're often the go-to person when customers have complaints regarding sales and service, and they manage any employee issues as well. You can also find store managers overseeing budgets, determining discount rates and developing plans to attract new customers.
7. Executive assistant
Executive assistants aren't just assistants. This is typically the right-hand person to an upper-management professional—some of the busiest employees in any business.
By handling clerical functions such as email correspondence, scheduling appointments, receiving visitors, preparing reports, booking travel accommodations and a host of other duties, the executive assistant is paramount to the success of other positions within the team. Executive assistants sometimes work closely with a company's human resources department, human resource management personnel and social media marketing department.
8. Retail sales workers
These workers can be found in a wide range of industries from clothing stores, coffee shops or specialty grocery stores to car dealerships or furniture stores.
They greet customers, offer expertise on merchandise, answer customers' questions and process transactions. Retail sales workers may also be responsible for stocking shelves, marking price tags, managing inventory and participating in a host of other retail management and store-related duties.
9. Sales consultant
Sales consultants seek out clients who may be interested in purchasing their company's products.
They're generally assigned a certain territory and are then required to schedule meetings with prospective clients to explain the features and specialties of their company's products or services.
There is typically some degree of travel involved in this position, although some sales consultants do work primarily via phone.
10. Sales supervisor
While a sales supervisor title covers a range of sales positions, the duties are generally the same.
The goal of sales is to generate revenue for a company, so the sales supervisor's job is to ensure customers' needs are met, oversee the sales team and work through any problems that might arise between the customer and the product.
Conflict-resolution skills, good communication and negotiation skills are a must for these business professionals.
Earn your Business Management Associate's degree online
As you can see, there are plenty of business careers out there for those with an Associate's degree in Business Management. Even better? Rasmussen University offers online Empowered Learning™ courses that allow you to learn by doing and manage your pace, completing course assignments at any time before the end of the term. 14-day attendance windows keep you on track and connected as you go. These courses allow you to better balance work and other responsibilities with your education.
Visit the Business Management Associate’s degree page to learn more about the exciting blend of learning options available to you.
1Time to completion is dependent on the number of transfer credits accepted and courses completed each term.
2Burning-Glass.com (analysis of 1,624,155 business job postings by education level, Jan. 01, 2019 – Dec. 31, 2019).
3Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment projections – Unemployment rates and earnings by educational attainment, [accessed April , 2023] https://www.bls.gov/careeroutlook/2022/data-on-display/education-pays.htm Salary data represents national, averaged earnings for the occupations listed and includes workers at all levels of education and experience. This data does not represent starting salaries, and employment conditions in your area may vary.
4Burning-Glass.com (analysis of 155,856 business management associate’s degree job postings, Jan. 01, 2019 – Dec. 31, 2019).
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article was originally published in December 2016. It has since been updated to include information relevant to 2023.