Careers in Statistics: Business and Industry

Jobs for statisticians in business and industry are found in both not-for-profit and for-profit public and private companies. Statisticians work in areas such as market research, quality control, financial planning, insurance, and management of all types of industries.

Future statisticians should study statistics and mathematics as well as economics, finance, marketing, operations management, computer science, and writing. Communication skills are important in order to convey statistical aspects of business decisions to stockholders, employees, the general public, and other professionals.

Fields of Application

Statisticians who work in business and industrial statistics can look forward to promising careers in numerous fields, including the following:



Actuarial statisticians work in all aspects of insurance, including pension plans, life tables, risk assessment, customer retention, and operations management. They assist in financial decisions regarding interest, annuities, mortgages, and bonds, and help determine pricing and product design for the firm. Analysts in the insurance industry are educated in a variety of disciplines, including statistics, finance, economics, business, mathematics, and computer science.



Engineers work in a range of industries, including electronics, chemicals, aerospace, pollution control, and construction. They may be responsible for leading large projects with significant costs, technical complexity, and responsibility. Statistical methods allow engineers to make a consistent product, detect problems early, minimize chemical waste, and predict product life.



Financial statisticians build models that help an organization avoid risk and exploit opportunities. Statisticians build prediction models from historic business or economic information. Financial statisticians also work in the areas of consumer credit and fraud detection. Use of these models in decision-making sharpens our understanding of the world we live in and improves our quality of life.



Statistics is used to quantify the extent of variation in customers' needs and wants. Statisticians design experiments for new products, conduct focus groups and sample surveys to gather consumer feedback, and perform field experiments in test markets to determine product viability. Statistics and data mining are also used to analyze sales data and predict future trends.



Industrial statisticians help build products and deliver services that satisfy customers and increase the company's market share and profitability. Statisticians help design the best possible product, guide the transition from design to manufacturing, ensure a consistently excellent product, help manage customer satisfaction, and ensure a financially beneficial bottom-line. Industry professionals use statistical methods for quality control in nearly all manufactured goods.