Compliance Analyst: Career and Salary Facts

Research what it takes to become a compliance analyst. Learn about job responsibilities, education and training requirements, and median salary to find out if this is the career for you. Schools offering Accounting degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Does a Compliance Analyst Do?

A compliance analyst, also known as a compliance officer, is a professional who determines if an organization is adhering to internal standards and government regulations that apply to the organization's products, services or operations. In addition to making sure that organizations abide by all national and international laws, they may also be responsible for evaluating the ethical practices of a company. Based on their results, they write reports for submission to oversight authorities.

The following chart gives you an overview about entering this field.

Degree Required Bachelor's degree required, some industry-specific degrees may also be requested
Training Required Compliance-related work experience often required, dependent on industry field
Skills Required Knowledge of industry specific regulations, guidelines, protocols and software applications
Job Growth (2014-2024) 3% (for all compliance officers)*
Median Salary (2015) $65,640 (for all compliance officers)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Is a Compliance Analyst?

Compliance analysts, also known as compliance officers or financial examiners, are professionals who determine if an organization is adhering to internal standards and government regulations that apply to the organization's products, services or operations. In this position, you could work for businesses, nonprofit agencies or government employers in sectors that include manufacturing, information technology, construction, social services, education, telecommunications, finance and healthcare.

Your responsibilities will largely depend on the type of industry. For example, if you are a compliance analyst in accounting or finance, you may conduct audits, create audit reports and address inquiries from the Securities and Exchange Commission. In healthcare, you may investigate medical coding issues, claims denials and billing concerns.

What Training Do I Need?

The minimum educational requirement for many positions is a bachelor's degree. While industry-specific degree programs may be requested, degree programs in more generalized disciplines, such as business or business administration, are also accepted. You can find related studies through programs like the Bachelor of Business Administration or Bachelor of Science in Accounting.

Employers may require that you have compliance-related work experience, as well as industry-specific licensing or certification. For example, you may need to have Certified Public Accountant designation or securities licenses if you work in finance. In healthcare, you may be required to obtain one or more coding certifications. Additionally, working knowledge of industry specific regulations, guidelines, protocols and software applications are often required or highly preferred.

What Salary Can I Earn?

In 2015, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that there were 257,010 compliance officers and the median salary for this position was $65,640 (www.bls.gov). Your individual salary may vary based on experience, geographic location or industry. For example, the BLS noted that in the same year, officers in the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry earned a mean salary of $80,170.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

You might also be interested in getting a job as an occupational health and safety specialist. These professionals evaluate workplace environments in order to ensure that they comply with legal standards that protect the health of employees, consumers and the environment. Based on their findings, they may develop and implement solutions to health and safety risks that they identify. You need to have a bachelor's degree for this job. Alternatively, you could consider becoming a fire inspector, where you would assess buildings to make sure that they are in compliance with government fire codes. Although the minimum educational requirement is a high school diploma, most fire inspectors have previous experience in the firefighting or law enforcement industry.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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