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

  • Analyst
  • Analytical Strategist
  • Business Analytics Director
  • Business Insight and Analytics Manager
  • Business Operations Analyst
  • Business Process Analyst
  • Decision Analyst
  • File System Installer
  • Forms Analyst
  • Liaison Planner

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.
  • Break systems into their component parts, assign numerical values to each component, and examine the mathematical relationships between them.
  • Design, conduct, and evaluate experimental operational models in cases where models cannot be developed from existing data.
  • Observe the current system in operation and gather and analyze information about each of the parts of component problems, using a variety of sources.
  • Analyze information obtained from management to conceptualize and define operational problems.
  • Define data requirements and gather and validate information, applying judgment and statistical tests.
  • Perform validation and testing of models to ensure adequacy and reformulate models as necessary.
  • Specify manipulative or computational methods to be applied to models.
  • 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.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • 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.
  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

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).

LMI Region

Wages

In 2012, the average annual wage in Washington was $83,950 with most people making between $56,810 and $114,140

Outlook

0.80%
avg. annual growth

During 2008, this occupation employed approximately 880 people in Washington. It is projected that there will be 950 employed in 2018.

This occupation will have about 7 openings due to growth and about 23 replacement openings for approximately 30 total annual openings.