The Modern Pricing Analyst

By Moira McCormick on April 20, 2017

The Modern Pricing Analyst

10-15 years ago, most prices were set by salespeople, finance or marketing.  Today however, more and more companies are treating pricing as a job in its own right.  A strong pricing capability, one that uses the new pricing software developed in recent years, can be a powerful way to bolster a company's bottom line. 

The time and attention needed to get modern pricing right often means dedicating full-time pricing specialists to the job – and this includes pricing analysts. Companies seeking to build a world-class pricing capability would do well to employ them for this specialist field. 

 

What Makes a Great Pricing Manager?

 

What Does a Pricing Analyst Do?

  • Reviews statistical information regarding product pricing to locate trends/patterns in consumer spending - and provide ideas for improvement.
  • Helps companies determine the price point they can sell products for without a loss.
  • Provides management with the analytics that measure product profitability and support the development of pricing strategies and plans.
  • Responsible for tracking marketplace metrics as well as establishing, maintaining and analysing price reference documentation in order to uncover key market and pricing insights, such as how pricing strategy will affect the consumer, and how it relates to the company’s competitors.
  • They need to make sure the company is getting the best possible prices when purchasing items, supplies and services.

Pricing analysts must prepare pricing recommendations based on their analysis, and present them to other departments such as finance, sales and marketing, in order to assist those making pricing decisions.  Larger companies have whole departments dedicated to pricing led by a Pricing Manager.

As part of pricing analyst duties, he/she is responsible for creating a master list of key items central to the product created by the company. This list is used to quickly check the prices on a regular basis and determine if further negotiations or adjustments are necessary.

Analysing the results of purchasing and product pricing decisions forms a major part of a price analyst’s day. This work requires analysis of the impact of decisions is central to determining if further adjustments are required.

The pricing analyst has a very important role in the process of cost accounting which involves carefully tracking the costs associated with every stage of product development. 

While not responsible for data entry, an analyst is expected to interpret the data and make the necessary arrangements to ensure that expenses are minimised.

 

Qualities Required to Be a Pricing Analyst

  • Enjoy working with and have an affinity for numbers and statistics and get satisfaction from finding value and savings
  • An analytical mind and business acumen; ability to spot patterns quickly, and the computation of various scenarios
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Timeliness and attention to detail
  • Excellent computer software skills and mental focus.
  • Exceptional research skills; pricing analysts are responsible for accurately reporting the price charged by the competition for substitute and complementary products.
  • Usually a first degree in either mathematics, statistics, economics, marketing or finance - but this can vary between employers. 
  • Higher level qualifications (MBA) may be required if a pricing analyst wishes to progress to a more senior position.

 

Modern Pricing Analyst Job Description

  • Provide pricing analysis for management
  • Perform margin and pricing analysis in order to support business initiatives
  • Monitor and update commercial price lists
  • Validate sales quotations for accuracy and profitability
  • Develop a system of communication, documentation and review of internal and external comparative pricing data
  • Identify opportunities to optimise sales and profitability through pricing strategies
  • Consult with sales and marketing teams to develop proposals
  • Prepare multi-year cost and pricing models that may include labour, materials, subcontracts, travel and other relevant costs
  • Research and report back on prices charged by competitors

 

Sources

http://www.wisegeek.com/what-does-a-price-analyst-do.htm

http://www.academicinvest.com/business-careers/accounting-careers/how-to-become-a-pricing-analyst

https://www2.deloitte.com/content/dam/Deloitte/us/Documents/strategy/us-consulting-ppm-is-there-a-career-in-pricing.pdf

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