Discovering your passion
Business operations is one of the largest labor categories in the United States and is popular among military spouses. The business operations category is extremely diverse, and many different occupations fall into this labor category. Most professional organizations classify their employees as either business operations managers or business operations specialists. If you are considering a career in business operations, review the Research Occupations tool on MySECO and take self-assessments to make sure your skills and interests align with this career path.
Education and training
The education requirements for this career path vary greatly depending on what level and type of employment you are looking for. Business operations specialist positions require, at a minimum, an associate degree for entry-level positions, with a bachelor's degree preferred. Business operations managers typically have a bachelor's degree as a basic requirement, with most companies preferring a master's degree or above.
College Scorecard is a great starting point for researching and selecting an education institution. When you visit College Scorecard, search by program/degree, location, size and more to find a program of study near you. You can also use the Scholarship Finder to assist you with locating funding relevant to the military community to help pay for classes.
Depending on your specific occupation or career field, you may also be required to obtain advanced licenses. Many of the business operations occupations in the financial industry require state licensure before you can legally work in that profession. For example, a financial advisor or manager must obtain a combination of licenses, which vary based on the products he or she sells. In addition to those licenses, smaller firms that manage clients' investments must be registered with state regulators, and larger firms must be registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Before you invest your time and energy in a specific occupation, you will want to check with an industry professional organization to make sure you meet the qualifications for licensure.
Visit the Military Spouse Interstate License Recognition Options for up-to-date legislation and licensure information for your specific state. If you move due to a PCS, your service branch can now help reimburse licensure and certification costs up to $1,000.
Once you have the right education and licensure requirements, it's time to find a job. One of the first places to look is the Military Spouse Employment Partnership Job Search. Hundreds of partner employers have made the commitment to recruit, hire, promote and retain military spouses in portable careers.
You can also search for business operations positions using the MySECO Job Search Tools, which include the following:
Professional organizations and networking
Join a professional organization in your chosen field to gain a better understanding of current industry practices and policies. Professional organizations are great ways to continue your education through workshops and conferences, which will add to your transferable skill set as you move. Network with other professionals in your industry to give you an edge in meeting the right people who may have the connections you need to get an interview at your new location.
Read The Value of Professional Associations for more information on how becoming a member can help enhance your career.
To explore additional information related to starting your career in business operations, check out the Research Occupations tool on MySECO. Enter the keywords 'business operations specialists' to learn more about the occupational overview for your specialty field. If you need additional information on obtaining the proper license or certification as part of your specialty field, review the Advantages of Licensure article in the Licensures and Certifications section of the Education, Training and Licensing lifecycle stage of MySECO.
You can also speak with a career coach at 800-342-9647 to discuss any questions or concerns you may have. Coaches are available to review your resume, practice interviewing, discuss networking or assist you in understanding employer requirements for this field.