Tuesday, July 1, 2014

How My Kelley Online MBA Helped Me Transition from Accounting Support to Business Analyst


Quiana Edmond, a current online MBA student, was recently promoted to a Business Analyst position at Xerox Corporation. She reached out to us to share how her online MBA experiences and classes helped her secure the position:

My undergraduate education was in arts & entertainment management, but all of my full-time work experience has been in various accounting functions. Because I didn’t have an accounting or finance degree, it was always hard for me to advance that part of my career.  I ultimately want to transition into entertainment management full-time and I felt that getting an MBA would help put me in a position to do that.  It was a win-win situation for me because I felt like even if I decided to continue working in accounting roles, an MBA would put me in a position to propel my career and avoid further stagnation.

Deciding Between Traditional Part-time and Online MBA Programs

When I was trying to decide between MBA programs I was apprehensive about both online and in-person part-time programs. As far as online, I was concerned about what my learning experience would be like. I wanted to make sure that I would be able to keep up with everything that was going on online because I knew that there would be a lot of moving parts.  I was concerned about selecting an in-person program because I wasn’t sure that I could commit to being in class at a certain day and time.

I ultimately selected the online MBA from Kelley because I felt that the curriculum would challenge me and give me the general management skills that I was looking for with my busy life. Kelley also provides me with much needed credibility and allows me to set myself apart from others with arts backgrounds.

The Kelley Direct Online MBA Was Right for Me

After being in the program for a year, I am convinced that I made the right decision. I absolutely love taking classes online!  I can watch class sessions and do my work based on my own schedule. It has made going back to school easier for me and my lifestyle. Another aspect of Kelley’s online MBA that is amazing is the networking opportunities. I’ve seen the Kelley faculty in Chicago three times over the past year and there are various student clubs where I can participate. This is great because when I show up in Bloomington for Kelley Connect Week, I don’t feel like I’m seeing strangers.  It’s always like I’m just catching up because I stay in contact and attend the Kelley networking events in my city.

If it were not for working on my MBA, Xerox would not have promoted me to Business Analyst. Because this role was part of an analytics team, the hiring managers wanted to know about my knowledge and ability to do analyses in Excel. I was able to provide concrete examples that demonstrated an advanced understanding of Excel based solely on things that I learned in my Quantitative Analysis course.  I was also asked to describe something that I can do in Excel that the average person would not know how to do. I described the process of running multiple regression analyses in StatTools and using Solver in Excel.  These are all things that I was unfamiliar with before I started my MBA. This is why I believe that had I not chosen to pursue my online MBA with Kelley Direct, I would not have been in a position to become my department’s newest Business Analyst so soon.

About Quiana Edmond

Quiana Edmond currently works for Xerox Corporation as the Business Analyst for the Managed Services Billing Center of Excellence in the Chicago area. She graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a BA in Arts, Entertainment & Media Management, and is currently pursuing her online MBA at the Kelley School of Business. She expects to graduate in May 2015.

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