If you are someone looking to get a foot into the door of the business world, it can be difficult without some sort of educational background or established experience. The reality is that these fields are run by expertly trained people who know what they’re doing, people who have the skills to get the job done from day one.
For many people, acquiring these skills can be very difficult, especially if you don’t have the proper schooling. Even if you have gone to school, that doesn’t necessarily mean you have the applicable ability or experience to qualify for these positions.
MOOCs (massive open online courses) are a great way to bridge that gap. These online schooling platforms often help people with the proper education while also acquiring the skills and experience required to excel. Of the many platforms out there, Coursera is one of the most popular by far. They have a plethora of different courses that cover a wide spectrum of different computer-based fields.
One of their most popular and impressive categories is their business courses. In this guide, I will go over and review the top ten different business courses that you can use to springboard you into your next career.
Top 10 Coursera Courses for Business (With Certificates)
- Google Project Management: Professional Certificate
- Key Technologies for Business Specialization
- Facebook Social Media Marketing Professional Certificate
- Business Foundations Specialization
- Introduction to Finance and Accounting Specialization
- Finance & Quantitative Modeling for Analysts Specialization
- Foundations of Project Management
- Business and Financial Modeling Specialization
- Financial Markets
- Leading the Modern Day Business Specialization
The Google Project Management: Professional Certificate (GPMPC) is a beginner-friendly project management course that you can use to start you on your path into the professional world. The course is offered by Google and is taught by many of their top instructors, ensuring that you have the highest quality education.
GPMPC, as a course, teaches you competitive skills that are in-demand and job-ready, all while taking no more than six months to complete while at a 10-hour per week schedule. In the course, you’ll acquire skills in risk management, managing escalations, and team dynamics.
- No Experience Required: You can start at any level of skill, even as a complete beginner.
- High Business Opportunities: Not only is the course offered by Google, but they teach skills that are in-demand and highly competitive. This greatly improves your chances of getting a job or a promotion.
- Too Fundamental: If you are someone that is coming in brand new, this is a great opportunity. For those that are already in the field, this may be a bit dull.
Review: If you are looking for a way to quickly transition from outside of this field to an actual position in Computer Business, this course is something you should consider.
Key Technologies for Business (KTB) is a course offered by IBM and helps students acquire a foundational and fundamental understanding of different aspects of technology that are propelling the modern business world. Students are given an outline of Data Science as well as AI and Cloud Computing.
Rather than go over these things from an academic standpoint, students are taught about their impact on the business market and how it can be translated into the professional world.
- No Experience Required: You can start at any level of skill, even as a complete beginner.
- Very Broad Audience: Unlike other fairly focused courses, this information is good for everyone, regardless of their background; from newly hired to executives and managers.
- Very Introductory: The course doesn’t do much more than give you a general understanding of these different concepts without getting particularly in-depth with any of them.
- Non-practical: Students of this course won’t be able to leverage this information into a corporate position directly; rather, it is only useful as supplemental education.
Review: This course is intentionally very broad and very surface-level. If you are someone that is looking to see how various technical areas are influencing the business world, this course will do that.
However, suppose you are trying to find some immediate way to leverage your education into a position. In that case, you may want to start with something else and use this as additional information.
A Facebook offered course, Facebook Social Media Marketing Professional Certificate (FSMMPC), goes over how you can start your career in social media marketing. Going through the course, you are taught how to build job-ready and job-performing skills in only seven months.
FSMMPC trains students on how to use Facebook Ads Manager and how to create ad campaigns to create an impressive social media presence. The course is completely beginner-friendly, turning a total student into a capable applicant in only seven months with only two hours of studying per week. In fact, over 30% of students were able to translate this information alone into a career.
- Beginner-Friendly: Students don’t need a degree or experience to take this course. You can be a complete beginner and become an expert in less than a year.
- Competitive Skills: Not only does the course give you great information from an academic standpoint, but it also offers applicable information that you can use while on the job.
- Highly Sought After: Unlike other courses that give good information, this course teaches you a specific skill that is highly sought after by most high-level companies.
- Very Niche: If you plan to take this course, understand that you are pretty much only focusing on what the title says. If you expect to gain a broader understanding of online business practices, this isn’t the course for you.
Review: The FSMMPC is a stellar course that virtually everyone in the business marketing world should take at some point in their career. The fact they teach students a profitable skill that they can immediately leverage shouldn’t be underestimated.
All-in-all, if you are someone interested in gaining a career, this Facebook course is one that I can’t recommend enough. Start from here and go further.
Offered by the University of Pennsylvania, the Business Foundations Specialization (BFS) course is a 6-part breakdown into establishing key business skills in marketing and finance. Students are taught to go over income statements and balance sheets as well as how to manage and motivate workers.
BFS helps to develop a fundamental understanding of the business language so that students can immediately transition into a career and potentially create their own business if they choose to. It is around seven months long (at a 2-hour a week pace), and anyone can take it, regardless of their educational background or prior knowledge.
- Beginner-Friendly: You can start the course knowing pretty much nothing in the world of business
- Easy Career Transition: BFS is a great option for students looking to jump into a career immediately. Similarly, if you are already in a career, this course is varied enough that you can easily leverage this information into a promotion.
- Universal Skillset: Not only can this help you land a job or rise through the ranks, but this course can also be a great foundational point for people looking to start their own business entirely.
- Very Long: It can take upwards of seven months if done at the suggested 2-hour per week study pace. That may be too long a time for some people that don’t see the upside.
Review: If you are someone that wants to jump into a career, rise through a career, or create your own business, this course gives you all the tools you need; more so than virtually any other course out there.
Introduction to Finance and Accounting (IFA) is a specialization course that teaches its students the basics of finance and accounting. This is done to build up their foundational core business skills and put them in a great position to move forward in their career.
The 4-part introductory course is around five months long and trains students in Excel Spreadsheet as well as cash flow analysis, bookkeeping fundamentals, and accrual accounting. Students are given a real-world look at corporate finance and other aspects of the accounting world.
- Beginner-Friendly: The course doesn’t require any previous knowledge or prior experience. That means you can go in knowing next to nothing, opening it to a large number of people.
- Applicable Skills: The course gives students very real and very applicable skills that can be used in pretty much any accounting business immediately
- A bit too Fundamental: If you are just starting out, this may be a great option. However, if you are looking to brush up on your knowledge or are already in the accounting world, much of this may be redundant.
- A bit too Niche: Unless you are planning to go into the accounting side of things, there is very little need for you to take this course over some of the other options.
Review: While potentially a bit redundant for those the more advanced, if you are someone interested in the accounting side of the business profession, this is an excellent first step that may even be good enough to leverage you into a job.
Another stellar Penn State course, Finance & Quantitative Modeling for Analysis (FQMA), teaches its students vital skills ranging from financial statement data and non-financial metrics to spreadsheet models and corporate finance.
This 4-part course is around four months long at roughly 2-hours per week. It is great for beginners and offers useful skills that can be leveraged when looking for a job or a promotion.
- Short: Because it is only hitting beginner-level topics, the course is very short and can be finished in under four months.
- Open to Beginners: FQMA is available to every level of competence, including complete beginners. This gives everyone access to the course and its information.
- Teaches In-Demand Skills: An analyst has become an increasingly important position as businesses have become more technologically driven. Being trained in this greatly improves your business prospects.
- Too Introductory: Many of the class subjects in the courses are fairly introductory and can be a bit simplistic for more advanced or experienced students.
Review: If you are someone just starting out, Finance & Quantitative Modeling for Analysts is a great option and can be a legitimate springboard into a career in business analysis.
A specific part of the Google Project Management Professional Certificate course, Foundations of Project Management, goes into the introductory aspects of project management. Throughout the 15-hour lesson, students are taught the core skills of a successful project manager. This includes strategic thinking, project management life cycles, and organizational structure and culture.
- For Beginners: The course is very simple and easy for anyone to jump into. As it deals with very introductory concepts, your previous knowledge and experience can vary.
- Great Introductory Information: If you are just starting, the lesson is quick enough to get all the important beats understood while never overwhelming you. This is a great option for those interested in the larger course but aren’t sure yet.
- Quick and Easy: It is very easy to finish since you are only dealing with a small segment of the larger course. You can take a few months at a 2-hour per week pace, or you can spend a full weekend.
- Very Basic: Since the lesson is just one of the six that make up the Professional Certificate, it means you’re not getting the full picture. This can be a problem for anyone that isn’t coming at this for the very first time.
Review: This is a great introductory lesson to start for people who don’t know much about Project Management. If you are someone that has already made up their mind, however, it may be worth checking out the full course instead.
Business and Financial Modeling (BFM) is a beginner-level course that trains its students in financial modeling and linear programming. They are taught how to use spreadsheet models to make data-driven financial decisions, as well as how to understand and measure risk management.
The course comprises five parts and takes around six months to complete while at a 2-hour per week study pace.
- For Beginners: Many of the course information is at the fundamental and introductory level. This means even individuals that aren’t super-advanced can understand and utilize this information.
- Vital Model Information: For those interested in financial modeling, decision making, and risk assessment, this course can make you a rudimentary expert, enough that getting a job in that field is highly attainable.
- Very Niche: Don’t expect to learn any aspect outside of financial modeling when taking this course.
Review: If you are interested in spreadsheets and creating various decision-making models and graphs, this is where you should start. It gives prospective students everything they need while having the University of Pennslyvania as an accredited qualifier when showing for a job.
A Yale offered course that overviews various aspects of the financial markets -including the different methods, institutions, and ideas – Financial Markets (FM) is a great introduction to how businesses can become empires.
The beginner-level course is made up of seven module lessons and is over 33 hours long. Throughout, students are taught about financially-savvy leadership skills, risk management, and many of the finance behavior principles found in real-world businesses.
- Viable Outcomes: This course has a track record of helping students land a real career after completing it. Over 11% of students managed to start their careers with this course only.
- Fundamental Lessons: The information in this course is very foundational, meaning that everyone can find benefit regardless of prior knowledge.
- A bit too fundamental: Depending on how advanced you are, the course information could be argued as being perhaps too simple overall.
Review: With an impressive university behind it and a lot of vital information that every professional business needs, there aren’t many reasons not to take advantage of this course.
A very useful class taught by instructors from the University of Virginia, Leading the Modern Day Business (LMDB), goes over various aspects of modern-day business. The course covers essential concepts and skills -such as storytelling and digital trends- and uses that information to help students navigate the current modern business framework.
The course is made up of four parts and goes over digital transformation, innovative thinking designs, the modern fundamentals of digital product management, and different strategies for customer-centric IT. The course takes around four months to complete while at a 2-hour per week schedule and can be taken by anyone, regardless of past knowledge or experience.
- Specialized Information: Students who go through this course are more equipped to handle the modern-day business world. This is very important as the information is geared to today’s scenario.
- Low Barrier to Entry: The course is open to just about anyone. It doesn’t matter how much you know or don’t know. This course can be of real benefit.
- Perhaps too Simple: One challenge that always happens with intro courses is that they skew too simplistic. While this is very good for people just starting, if you are looking for a review or are already trained in these concepts, this can be more than a bit frustrating.
Review: Especially if you are just starting, LMDB is a great option for starting your career and understanding exactly what is happening in today’s business world.