Online Business Administration Bachelor's Degree

What You’ll Learn & What You Can Do After Graduation

Earning an online business degree can help launch careers for aspiring administrators, managers, and upper-level executives. Candidates can apply the skills learned in an online business administration degree in nearly any field, including finance, technology, and healthcare.

While graduates with accredited business administration degrees often pursue careers in office, finance, or benefits management, some also qualify for accountant or auditor positions. Today's workforce offers a generous return on investment for students earning a business administration degree online, with above average job growth for administrative services managers and a lucrative median annual salary of more than $90,000.

Why Earn an Online Degree in Business Administration?

Schools offering online business degrees tailor career programs to nontraditional students, an option ideal for learners with full-time jobs and families at home. An online degree for business administration enables students to login from anywhere at any time, making this option more convenient than a degree that requires regular attendance or a campus residency.

Additionally, the flexibility of an online business administration degree also supports each student's unique learning style, offering a variety of full-time, part-time, and accelerated schedules -- and synchronous and asynchronous formats. Last but not least, earning a business administration degree online can help students save money on tuition and expenses, as online business degrees tend to cost less by eliminating the need for commuting to and from campus, housing costs, and residential accommodation fees.

What Can I Do with an Online Business Administration Bachelor's Degree?

Among the most versatile college programs, an online business administration degree prepares graduates for a variety of professional applications. The skills learned in this discipline can translate to many careers in both domestic and global industries. Students may choose to pursue a career in administrative services management or business analysis, or forge their own path as an entrepreneur. Others may earn an online business administration bachelor's degree as a foundation for a graduate degree or pursue advanced credentials in a similar field, such as marketing or finance.

Skills and Knowledge Gained

The best online business degrees address a variety of potential outcomes for students aspiring to a career in business administration. The curriculum of an online business administration degree encompasses a combination of hard and soft skills designed to provide graduates with the traits identified as most desirable by employers. The following represents skills learned within a typical bachelor's degree in business administration.

  • Communication: Essential for any management position, employers rank this soft skill among the most important for prospective candidates. Online business degrees focus on sharpening a student's written and oral communication skills, preparing graduates to express ideas clearly and delegate tasks appropriately while on the job.
  • Accounting and Finance: Business administrators in any field must understand critical financial responsibilities that include accounting and budgeting. Whether a student aspires to specialize in finance or plans to pursue an office manager position, accounting skills remain crucial in business administration. Many bachelor's programs offer multiple introductory finance and accounting courses.
  • Marketing: At the core of a traditional business education, aspiring business administrators can choose from a myriad of marketing methods to engage their consumer base and enhance their business. The best online business degrees incorporate digital marketing and social media training in addition to traditional marketing coursework to prepare graduates for top business administration jobs.

For students with an associate degree, the skills and competencies gained through a bachelor's degree in business administration may facilitate career opportunities not otherwise available. As the minimum education requirement for most business administration positions, graduates with a bachelor's degree may pursue the widest range of careers in the field.

Careers and Salary Potential

Students holding an online business degree at the bachelor level can pursue careers in many fields and industries. Employers universally prefer candidates with a mastery of soft skills learned through a business administration program, including communication, problem-solving, and an eye for detail. With core courses in finance, ethics, and HR management, graduates with an online business administration degree meet the minimum education requirement for jobs in business, but they may also pursue opportunities in similar fields with unique applications for business skills. According to PayScale, the following industries employ some of the largest populations of BBA graduates.

  • Software Development: As business and commerce continue to expand online, software development positions become increasingly reliant on candidates with business administration skills. Some bachelor of business administration programs offer majors/minors in software development, requiring courses in basic web development, networks, and database management specific to businesses and corporations.
  • Financial Services: Traditional business administration degrees include accounting and finance courses that prepare graduates for careers in financial services. Specifically, graduates of an online business degree may qualify for jobs as cost estimators, compensation and benefits managers, and buyers and purchasing agents, all of which require a bachelor's degree for entry-level positions.
  • Healthcare: While many colleges offer programs specific to healthcare administration management, online business degrees can equally prepare graduates for a lucrative career in this growing field. Coursework in database management, online recordkeeping, and accounting and finance prepares graduates for roles as medical office managers and health information technicians.
  • Manufacturing: Some schools offer concentrations in manufacturing areas as part of an online business degree. Aspiring industrial production managers learn skills in communication, problem-solving, and time management during their bachelor's in business administration studies. However, many employers prefer to hire industrial production managers with a BBA or MBA and relevant work experience.
  • Education: The field needs educators with business expertise to train emerging professionals. Graduates of a bachelor's in business administration with a concentration in education may pursue teaching or training positions. They may also speak at vocational schools, community colleges, or private training facilities.
Administrative Services Manager

Annual Median Salary: $94,020

Also called business office managers, administrative services managers maintain operations including filing, correspondence, and recordkeeping for a business or organization. Some administrative services managers oversee multiple areas of operations outside typical office duties, such as security or building maintenance. A natural choice for online business degree graduates, most employers prefer candidates with a bachelor's degree and prior work experience.

Compensation and Benefits Manager

Annual Median Salary: $119,120

Compensation and benefits managers oversee a company's payroll and benefits offered to employees. These professionals help ensure that a company's compensation and benefits packages meet state and federal guidelines, maintain competitive wages, and help budget payroll operations. Entry-level employees should possess a bachelor's degree in business management or administration, or HR management, preferably with relevant work experience.

Accountant or Auditor

Annual Median Salary: $69,350

A common offshoot of a BBA degree, many graduates of an online business degree choose to pursue a career in financial management. Accountants and auditors require skills in math, analytics, and economics, along with an advanced understanding of taxes, laws, and software specific to financial management. Most employees hold a bachelor's degree in accounting or business. Many employers prefer CPA licensure.

Financial Manager

Annual Median Salary: $125,080

Among the most popular career prospects for graduates of an online business degree with specialized experience in finance, financial managers guide clients to optimal financial health, including individuals, small businesses, and corporate entities. They may prepare financial statements, monitor spending, develop a budget, and/or set long-term goals for clients. Financial managers should possess a bachelor's degree and at least five years of related work experience.

Management Analyst

Annual Median Salary: $82,450

Also called management consultants, these professionals examine all aspects of a business or organization and help streamline its operations. Working with client financial data assessment, personnel structure, and day-to-day functions, management analysts seek to improve work conditions and increase profits for the company. Aspiring management analysts should hold at least a bachelor's degree, though some employers prefer candidates with the CMC credential.