If you're thinking about entering the business world, it can be overwhelming when you start to consider the many career options within this field. After all, just about every job is linked to a business in some way. Many of them fall into the broad category of business services. This can definitely be a good career direction for people whose interests and aptitude match one or more occupations within this general field. Discover what kinds of jobs are considered business services so you can make an informed decision about whether this career path is right for you.
What Is Business Services?
Jobs that fall into the category of business services are ones that are not directly linked to the production of tangible products. Some businesses, like advertising agencies and accounting firms, are entirely service businesses, which means they don't produce a tangible product at all. However, even companies that do produce a product, such as car or furniture manufacturers, still need team members who perform service-focused jobs. Think about it like this:
- Production: Employees whose role contributes directly to the production of a product are production workers.
- Services: Employees who focus on tasks related to operating, managing, or marketing the company they work for, or who provide services to the company's clients, work in business services.
Examples of Jobs in Business Services
Many kinds of jobs fall into the business services category. They can all be good career paths; the key is to finding the one(s) that are good paths for you. Examples of the types of jobs that would be considered business services include:
From bookkeeping and tax preparer jobs that don't require a degree, to high-level positions such as controller, or other roles that may require a Certified Professional Accountant (CPA) credential, there are many accounting-focused jobs. Some involve providing services to clients, while others handle functions like accounts payable, accounts receivable, payroll, and tax filings for their employers. This is a good role for people who are:
- Good with numbers
All administrative support jobs fall into the business services category. These include positions like administrative assistant, executive assistant, office manager, secretary, office assistant, and receptionist. Any position for which the primary responsibilities focus on clerical duties and/or ensuring that a company's back-office operations function effectively can be categorized as an administrative support role. This can be a good path for people who are:
- Highly organized
- Comfortable in a behind-the-scenes role
Most customer service jobs are business services positions. This applies to customer service jobs that primarily involve communicating with people who have purchased products or services from an organization. People employed in customer service roles answer questions, provide information, or otherwise ensure that customers' needs are met. Some may be in-store or in-office jobs, while others may be remote call center positions. This is a good job for people who are:
- Excellent communicators
- Patient with repetitive inquiries
People who specialize in planning events for their company or their clients work in business services jobs. Some large companies have event coordinators on staff who coordinate company travel and/or special events such as trade shows or conferences for employees or customers. Other examples of careers in event planning include wedding planning and party planning. This is a good field for people with the following attributes:
- Skilled multitasker
- High energy
- Detail oriented
Many business services jobs fall into the finance category. These include banking jobs like teller positions or financial services representative roles. In a corporate environment, finance employees may range from financial analysts to high-level finance professionals, such as a Chief Financial Officer (CFO). People such as Certified Financial Planners (CFPs) who provide financial planning services to clients, also fall in this category. This can be a good career path for people who are:
- Highly analytical
- Critical thinkers
Most companies have a human resources (HR) department. Even those that don't have a dedicated department have personnel who handle HR tasks. HR duties include things like recruiting, onboarding, employee training, performance management, compensation analysis, benefits administration, regulatory compliance, career pathing, and other tasks related to the people processes of an organization. This type of work is good for individuals who are:
- Good listeners
Management and Supervision
People who work as managers or supervisors are performing a business services function. They often oversee the work of production workers, but they don't generally produce goods themselves. Instead, managers and supervisors oversee the work of other employees who may be producing goods or providing services. They focus on things like planning, scheduling, and organizing work, while also leading employees. This can be a good option for people who are:
People who work in marketing generally focus on promoting a company's goods and services. Some marketing professionals specialize in brand development, while others focus on things like product placement, distribution channels, advertising, merchandising, or promotional materials. Some also do market research, analyze customer data, or oversee the supply chain. This can be a good field for people who are:
Public relations (PR) professionals help build goodwill for their companies. They create and implement internal and external communication plans. They write and deliver speeches, craft news releases, create newsletters, and book media interviews. Some PR people have corporate jobs where they promote a specific company. Others work for PR firms, where they handle public relations for clients. This field can be a good option for people who are:
- Skilled writers
- Excellent public speakers
Sales professionals provide extremely important business services, as they are the ones who identify prospective customers and convince them to buy from their employer. Some sales professionals work mostly via telephone or electronic communication, while others call on customers and prospects via face-to-face meetings. Some have a local territory, while others are assigned specific geographic territories to cover. This can be a great field for people who are:
Compensation for Business Services Professionals
For all the types of business services jobs listed above, there are career opportunities at every level. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), as of 2021, the average hourly earnings across all categories and levels of business and professional services is around $37 per hour. Compensation can vary widely, with high-level positions paying more than entry-level or mid-career roles. For details on pay for specific occupations within the category of business services, see the BLS directory of occupational employment and wage estimates.
Many Potential Career Paths
These are just a few of the many types of business services jobs that exist. If you are seeking a white-collar job in a business environment, business services can definitely be a good avenue to explore. No matter what you're interested in or where your talents lie, chances are that there's a path to success for you as a business services professional.