A quick Google search of "BizOps jobs" reveals thousands of job postings, many of which are looking for experienced professionals. But what if you're just starting out and looking to get your first BizOps role?
For starters, bookmark our BizOps job board, where you’ll find the latest opportunities updated every week.
But finding open job postings is only the first step. In this article, you’ll learn if BizOps is right for you, the kind of skills and experience you need, and actionable steps to get your first job.
Let’s dive in!
Is A Career In Bizops Right For You?
BizOps, short for Business Operations, is an up-and-coming field that combines traditional business analysis and operations management with advanced analytics and data-driven decision-making. The roles in this industry are a hybrid between business and technical roles, requiring someone who can think deeply about both aspects of an organization.
Kevin Brennan, a leading Business Architect, accurately describes BizOps professionals as problem solvers:
“BizOps practitioners focus on solving problems that can’t be solved by the existing business. Most often, they require capabilities and knowledge that don’t exist anywhere in the organization, meaning that at the start, nobody has any idea how to solve them. BizOps practitioners and teams have to come into these ambiguous situations and clearly identify the challenge, identify possible solutions, validate them to identify the most practical one to implement, deliver it, and build a new business capability to maintain it in the long-term.”
Does this describe you? If you're a jack-of-all-trades with an interest in business and technology, BizOps is the perfect career choice for you.
What Can You Get From Starting A BizOps Career?
With the growing need for businesses to become more data-savvy, BizOps professionals are highly sought after by companies of all sizes. They are willing to pay highly competitive salaries for experienced professionals who can help them make data-driven decisions and streamline their operations.
A career in BizOps will allow you to work with various teams and departments, which enables you to develop your technical skills, gain valuable insights into how businesses operate, create connections with other professionals, and make a real difference in the success of an organization.
What Kind of Experiences and Skills Do BizOps Roles Need?
Most companies look for candidates who have a strong background and experience in the fields of:
- Sales and Revenue Operations
- Project Management
- Product Management
- Vendor Management
- Customer Service
- Corporate Strategy and Development
- Finance and Accounting
A strong portfolio of work that demonstrates an ability to manage projects, process and analyze data, collaborate with various teams, and develop strategies to help a company grow is essential for landing a BizOps role. In fact, these are some of the core responsibilities of BizOps that we outline further in a separate article.
“Typically, you can find an avenue through consulting, business analytics, sales operations, or finance; however, as someone that comes from a non-traditional background, I think there are many ways to break into BizOps,” shares Alyssa Higgins, who came from the marketing industry and is now VP of Business Operations at CipherHealth.
One of the things that makes BizOps so unique is that it requires a broad range of skills.You won’t be a functional expert, but you need to be able to quickly understand all the different business functions and how they interact.
The most common skills that employers look for in a BizOps professional include, but are not limited to:
- Project management expertise
- Data analysis, modeling, and visualization techniques
- Strategic planning and business intelligence tools
- Strong analytical skills to identify trends and develop creative solutions
- Excellent communication skills to explain complex concepts to stakeholders
“A keen eye for process improvements, analytical skills, and project management prowess can all play a key role in creating a career path in BizOps,” adds Higgins.
How Do You Land a BizOps Role?
A degree in Business, Computer Science, or Information Technology can help land you a BizOps role.
But the importance of drive and curiosity is underestimated. Rahul Desai, General Manager and BizOps expert, shares that "a big part of the BizOps role is questioning assumptions. You have to dig deep to understand why people have done things a certain way before you can make meaningful improvements. Your drive to uncover and challenge assumptions is necessary for success in the role."
Assess What Skills You Currently Have
Since many employers prefer hiring candidates with the appropriate qualifications and hands-on experience, looking into your current skill set is a great way to determine the areas where you need to develop.
The 360 feedback tactic is one of the most effective; it involves asking a wide range of people in your circles what skills they believe you demonstrate. For instance, you might ask colleagues to list areas they’ve seen you excel. But don’t limit your circle to your immediate workplace – ask family members, too, who perhaps see a different side of your personality, along with former colleagues who might speak more candidly.
You can self-assess your skills, too. List out the skills you already have, splitting them into soft skills (emotional intelligence, social skills etc.) and hard skills (software proficiency, process aptitude). Evaluate your proficiency in each, and focus on sharpening the most relevant ones to BizOps.
Work To Close Your Skill Gaps
Once you have assessed the skills you currently have, it’s time to identify and address the gaps in your skill set to prepare for BizOps roles.
Perhaps you excel in business communication skills, but are less technical. If this is the case, consider leaning into your strengths. Seek out BizOps roles that are more general and don’t require you to work within engineering teams. Plenty of successful BizOps professionals are non-technical. They work alongside, not with DevOps professionals.
Similarly, if your skills are leaning towards data science, you can become more well-versed in Business Operations and strategy by taking on more junior BizOps roles and internships.
According to Kirk Warner, the Head of Growth at Cosync.io, there are two main paths for progression: strategy and operations. Here’s the typical role progression he has observed:
This can help to orient you toward the right skill sets and training. For instance, if you’re looking to enter on the strategy side of things, you’ll need to get training in analytics and business – perhaps through an MBA.
Project operations tends to require more hands-on experience, which you can accomplish by putting yourself forward for project management opportunities.
Join The BizOps Network
While you can certainly look for job postings on online platforms and connect with fellow professionals on social media sites, the BizOps Network makes it easier to find the right opportunities, engage with like-minded individuals, and learn the ins and outs of the industry.
BizOps Network is a private community of BizOps professionals that offers a wide range of resources, training, and learning opportunities, mentorship with coaches from different fields, and a job board specifically for BizOps professionals.
A BizOps community like BizOps Network is the perfect place to help get your foot in the door of the BizOps world.
Connect With Hiring Managers
It's not enough to just send out your resume and wait for a response. You must make yourself visible and demonstrate that you're the right person for the job.
Reaching out to hiring managers in the industry is a great way to network and get your name out there. Look for events or webinars related to BizOps and take advantage of Twitter and LinkedIn to connect and engage with hiring managers.
Learn About The Companies That Hire BizOps Professionals
Making it a habit to research companies that are hiring BizOps professionals can be a great way to stay ahead of the game. The most common industries that hire BizOps professionals include software, eCommerce, finance/banking, healthcare, and retail.
With a good understanding of their business model, goals and objectives, strategies, and challenges, you'll be able to show potential employers your commitment and interest in working with them.
Land Interviews and Crush It
When it's time for the interview, make sure to bring your A-game. Do your homework and research about the company and role in advance, practice answering common questions, and come up with well-thought-out responses that showcase your skill set and experience.
For example, if you're asked to discuss a project you worked on that involves making quick decisions with limited data, don't just list the tasks you completed.
Paint a picture and walk them through the entire process, from identifying the problem and the strategies you used to come up with an actionable solution, to its impact on the organization and any lessons you learned along the way. The Situation-Task-Actions-Results, or STAR, formula can help you structure your responses to this kind of behavioral interview question.
Succeed in the role
Once you land your first BizOps role, don’t stop learning. Continue digging into research and best practices around BizOps. Most importantly, connect with a network of peers and mentors who are further along in their BizOps career. Bring your questions, challenges, and ideas to them. They’ll be a resource that will undoubtedly help you get ahead and continue growing.
To find such a group of trusted BizOps peers, join the BizOps Network, a private community of BizOps professionals. You'll gain access to exclusive resources, online workshops and learning sessions, mentorship opportunities, and a most of all, supportive community of like-minded individuals.
Apply to join here.