The business world is constantly changing, thanks in large part to the tech revolution that's taken place over the last several years. But at least one thing remains the same: all companies, no matter their size, scope, or segment, need good management to keep their operations tight and their balance sheets on the right side of zero, quarter after quarter.
The need for efficient management may not have changed, but the specific knowledge and skills that are necessary for today's managers to stay at the forefront of their field are constantly evolving. Earning a management degree online can give you insight into cutting-edge theories, techniques, and approaches developed by the field's foremost thinkers to be especially relevant to the contemporary business climate.
Effective management is one of the most important parts of a successful organization, and well-trained and experienced managers are in high demand on the job market.Whether you're just starting out on your bid for a management position, or trying to take an established career to the next level, an online management degree might be the missing piece of the puzzle.
What to Know About Online Degrees in Management
Management degrees are available at all points on the academic spectrum, from two-year associate degrees to rigorous graduate and post-graduate study. Most early-stage degree programs focus on introducing the various aspects of business administration and management, while more advanced courses typically seek to deepen students' understanding of fundamental principles and build on their initial understanding to teach more complex concepts.
Here's a list of subjects that students in management degree programs can expect to encounter at one point or another on the path to graduation:
- Financial management
- Managerial accounting
- Business law
- Quantitative analysis
- Organizational behavior
- Leadership principles
- Business ethics
An associate or bachelor's degree in management may be enough to get started in a management position, particularly if you already have some workplace experience in the field where you're hoping to manage. Employers hiring for upper management positions often prefer candidates with a master's degree, which is a level at which the flexibility of online education can come in especially handy. Having the ability to earn your degree on a schedule that fits with your professional responsibilities can allow you to continue your education while remaining employed full-time.
Job Outlook for Management Graduates
The U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that many management occupations will grow at a faster rate than the seven percent expansion predicted for all jobs combined nationwide between 2014 and 2024. Here are some positions that might interest graduates with a degree in management, along with salary figures and other relevant information from the BLS:
|Occupation Title||National Mean Annual Salary
|Projected Job Growth
|Total U.S. Employment
|Marketing manager||$140,660||9 percent||194,300||Bachelor's degree|
|Administrative services manager||$94,840||8 percent||287,300||Bachelor's degree|
|Human resources manager||$117,080||9 percent||122,500||Bachelor's degree|
|Sales manager||$130,400||5 percent||376,300||Bachelor's degree|
Different geographical regions may pay more or less on average than the national mean, sometimes by tens of thousands of dollars. Take a look at how the mean annual salaries from these top-paying states compare to the nationwide average for the four occupations listed above:
- New York: $186,940
- California: $161,640
- New Jersey: $161,000
Administrative services manager
- New York: $121,970
- New Jersey: $121,320
- Delaware: $110,100
Human resources manager
- New Jersey: $150,400
- Washington, D.C.: $145,910
- Rhode Island: $139,330
- New York: $183,610
- Delaware: $172,660
- Virginia: $156,620
Some industries also tend to offer higher salaries than others for certain management positions. Securities and commodities exchanges and brokerages, for example, paid a mean annual wage of $205,000 to their marketing and sales managers in 2015.
Choosing the Right School
Whether you're looking to pursue a management degree on campus or online, there are many options all over the country equipped to give you an education that meets the standards of employers and academic agencies nationwide. It's important, however, to make sure that the program you choose has been accredited by a reputable regional or national agency before you enroll.
Accreditation is a formal recognition of the quality of education provided by a school or program. Students in unaccredited programs may not learn everything that's known to be essential for their degree to have professional or scholastic relevance, so check your school's website or chat with a registrar beforehand to find out your particular program's accreditation status.
Also, remember: you're the only one who can tell whether a school is right for you. Talk to as many school reps as possible, visit some campuses if you can, and read testimonials from graduates if they're available. The institution that best suits your learning style is out there -- the harder you look, the more likely you are to find it.
To learn more about earning an online degree in management, or get details on a specific program, request information from any of the schools listed below.
- Occupational Outlook Handbook, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, accessed April 19, 2016: Advertising, Promotions and Marketing Managers, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/advertising-promotions-and-marketing-managers.htm; Administrative Services Managers, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/administrative-services-managers.htm; Human Resources Managers, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/human-resources-managers.htm; Sales Managers, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Management/Sales-managers.htm
- Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2015, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, accessed April 19, 2016: Marketing Managers, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes112021.htm; Administrative Services Managers, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes113011.htm; Human Resources Managers, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes113121.htm; Sales Managers, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes112022.htm
- Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, accessed April 19, 2016, May 2014 National Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_nat.htm
- Council for Higher Education Accreditation, accessed April 19, 2016, http://www.chea.org/