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Career and Education Opportunities for Operations Research Analysts in Grand Rapids, Michigan

For those living in the Grand Rapids, Michigan area, there are many career and education opportunities for operations research analysts. There are currently 2,380 working operations research analysts in Michigan; this should grow by 2% to about 2,430 working operations research analysts in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for operations research analysts are expected to grow by about 22.0%. In general, operations research analysts formulate and apply mathematical modeling and other optimizing methods using a computer to develop and interpret information that assists management with decision making, policy formulation, or other managerial functions.

Income for operations research analysts is about $39 hourly or $82,500 yearly on average in Michigan. Nationally, their income is about $33 per hour or $69,000 per year. Incomes for operations research analysts are better than in the overall category of Statistics Analysis in Michigan, and not quite as good as the overall Statistics Analysis category nationally. Jobs in this field include: operations analyst, policy advisor, and supply chain analyst.

The Grand Rapids area is home to nineteen schools of higher education, including two within twenty-five miles of Grand Rapids where you can get a degree as an operations research analyst. Operations research analysts usually hold a Master's degree, so you can expect to spend about six years training to become an operations research analyst if you already have a high school diploma, or just 2 years starting with a Bachelor's degree.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Operations Research Analyst

Operations Research Analyst video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, operations research analysts formulate and apply mathematical modeling and other optimizing methods using a computer to develop and interpret information that assists management with decision making, policy formulation, or other managerial functions. They also may develop related software, service, or products.

Operations research analysts formulate mathematical or simulation models of problems, relating constants and variables and their numerical parameters. They also layout and evaluate experimental operational models in cases where models cannot be developed from existing data. Equally important, operations research analysts have to observe the current system in operation and gather and analyze data related to each of the parts of component problems, using a variety of sources. They are often called upon to specify manipulative or computational methods to be applied to models. They are expected to ready management reports defining and evaluating problems and recommending solutions. Finally, operations research analysts design business methods and procedures, including accounting systems and production schedules.

Every day, operations research analysts are expected to be able to decide how to think about problems involving math. They need to deal with basic arithmetic problems.

It is important for operations research analysts to break systems into their component parts, assign numerical values to each component, and examine the mathematical relationships between them. They are often called upon to design business methods and procedures, including accounting systems and production schedules. Somewhat less frequently, operations research analysts are also expected to design and apply time and cost networks to develop and review large projects.

They also have to be able to analyze data obtained from management to conceptualize and define operational problems and perform validation and testing of models to insure adequacy and reformulate models as needed. And finally, they sometimes have to collaborate with senior managers and decision makers to pinpoint and solve a variety of problems and to explain management objectives.

Like many other jobs, operations research analysts must be able to absorb the factors involved and a problem and provide a well thought out solution and have exceptional integrity.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Grand Rapids include:

  • Computer Programmer. Convert project specifications and statements of problems and procedures to detailed logical flow charts for coding into computer language. Develop and write computer programs to store, locate, and retrieve specific documents, data, and information. May program web sites.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Operations Research Analyst Training

University of Phoenix-West Michigan Campus - Grand Rapids, MI

University of Phoenix-West Michigan Campus, 318 River Ridge Dr, NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49544-1683. University of Phoenix-West Michigan Campus is a small university located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 382 students. University of Phoenix-West Michigan Campus has a bachelor's degree program in Management Science which graduated twenty-one students in 2008.

Grand Valley State University - Allendale, MI

Grand Valley State University, 1 Campus Dr, Allendale, MI 49401-9403. Grand Valley State University is a large university located in Allendale, Michigan. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 23,932 students and an admission rate of 78%. Grand Valley State University has a bachelor's degree program in Management Science which graduated fifty-three students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Confidentiality Officer: Professional certification validates your training and experience in your present career.

For more information, see the Business Espionage Controls and Countermeasures Association website.

Fiscal Services - Accelerated Package: Fiscal Services - Accelerated Package course list: Better Requests for Proposals for Better Projects; Continuous Improvement Through Monitoring; Contracting; New Coding System for the 21st Century; Procurement; and Writing Winning Grant Proposals.

For more information, see the Dynamic Works Institute website.

Stay Sharp Program - Defeating Rogue Access Points: Security professionals who are concerned about the weaknesses of wireless networks.

For more information, see the Global Information Assurance Certification website.

Microsoft Certified Professional Developer: For individuals who wish to distinguish themselves as an expert in Windows development, Web application development, or enterprise applications development.

For more information, see the Microsoft Corporation website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Grand Rapids, Michigan

Grand Rapids, Michigan
Grand Rapids, Michigan photo by Grguy2011

Grand Rapids is located in Kent County, Michigan. It has a population of over 193,396, which has shrunk by 2.2% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Grand Rapids, 81, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Grand Rapids cost $98,700 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, forty-three new homes were built in Grand Rapids, down from ninety-two the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Grand Rapids are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, transportation equipment, and educational services. The average travel time to work is about 19 minutes. More than 23.8% of Grand Rapids residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 8.0%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Grand Rapids is 15.4%, which is greater than Michigan's average of 14.3%.

The percentage of Grand Rapids residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 52.9%, is more than both the national and state average. Church of Jesus Christ, Immanuel Church and Trinity Church are among the churches located in Grand Rapids. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Christian Reformed Church in North America and the Reformed Church in America.

Grand Rapids is home to the Kent Country Club and the Walker Juvenile Court as well as Comstock Riverside Park and Richmond Park. Visitors to Grand Rapids can choose from Hampton Inn Grand Rapids, Hampton Inn Grand Rapids/North- Mi and Hampton Inn Fax for temporary stays in the area.