What does a Policy Analyst do?
A policy analyst is responsible for examining the efficacy of existing policies and laying out the groundwork for new programs and legislation to meet objectives and goals. Duties of the position include reviewing and amending policy drafts and proposing suggestions to improve the effects of existing policies. Policy analysts also work closely with stakeholders to determine the goals and objectives of policies. Depending on the industry, a policy analyst may progress into a directorial or executive role.
A bachelor's degree in a related field is the minimum educational requirements to be a policy analyst. In some specialized areas of work, master's degrees in the field are preferred. Some policy analysts also obtain a legal degree due to the need to understand legal aspects affecting policy creation and changes. Good candidates for this position often possess an excellent understanding of the industry and market conditions and have strong analytical and organizational skills.
- Review and evaluate legislation and policies
- Determine the benefits and drawbacks of existing policies
- Propose suggestions to improve the effects of policies
- Identify legal flaws in policies and recommend amendments
- Edit and amend policy drafts as required
- Liaise with stakeholders to determine needs and goals of policies
- Gather data and produce reports on the qualitative and quantitative analysis
- Analyze market trends and conditions
- Master's degree in a related field preferred
- Working knowledge of the legal aspects affecting policies
- Excellent understanding of the relevant industry and market conditions
- High organizational and time-management skills
- Strong analytical and problem-solving skills
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills
- Good interpersonal and social skills
- Exceptional team player with a strong ability to contribute positively to a team environment
- Able to sit in front of a computer screen for long hours at a time
How much does a Policy Analyst make?
Policy Analyst Career Path
Learn how to become a Policy Analyst, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.
Years of Experience Distribution
Policy Analyst Insights
“No one in my dept makes the minimum salary range for our job as advertised.”
“I enjoyed working with highly dedicated and intelligent people day”
“This was a nice place to work and a good short”
“Good benefit and retirement benefit”
“Very good work and life balance”
“Provide the best learning and development opportunities”
“bad career development focus and pay”
“limited options for career growth and personal development”
Policy Analyst Interviews
Frequently asked questions about the role and responsibilities of policy analysts
Policy analysts conduct research on existing policies to determine how they're working and to determine their strengths and weaknesses. They also work to develop new policy recommendations to address various issues. The typical day of a policy analyst may include drafting policies and meeting stakeholders.
An advantage of working as a policy analyst is the ability to choose a variety of concentrations, from science and law to health care and the environment. Job satisfaction for these professionals comes from informing policy changes that can improve people's lives.
In the U.S., the average salary for policy analysts is $73,474 per year, depending on specialization, years on the job, and place of work. As a policy analyst gains experience, they can earn a salary of up to $115,188 per year.
Becoming a policy analyst requires public speaking, sometimes in stressful situations. These professionals may need to testify in front of local, state, or even national governments. Additionally, they must demonstrate strong research skills and the ability to defend their work.