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How Can I Build a Successful Data Analyst Career?

DZone's Guide to

How Can I Build a Successful Data Analyst Career?

If you've come to DZone to learn about building a career in big data, read on to get an overview of the skills you'll need to do so.

· Big Data Zone ·
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Who Is a Data Analyst?

A data analyst is the one who collects, organizes, and analyzes large sets of data to discover patterns and other useful information. Data mining and data auditing are must have skills to become a Data Analyst.

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Data Analyst Skills:

If you intend to become a successful data analyst, you must start by ensuring a good knowledge in technology, business intelligence, data mining, data auditing, mathematics, statistics and another bunch of analytics skills which include:

  1. Programming Languages: You need to be familiar with some computer software and scripting languages like Matlab and Python to find significant insights, statistical languages like R, SAS, and other computer skills include JavaScript, XML, and so on.

  2. Data Mining and Auditing: A data analyst must have data mining and auditing skills. Data mining is the process of sorting through large sets of data to classify patterns and establish relationships through data analysis. Data auditing is the process of conducting a data audit to assess how a company's data can be used for a given purpose.

  3. Testing Skills: A data analyst must have testing skills as tests are carried out based on different hypotheses that impact the key performance indicators in one way or another.

  4. Statistical Skills: A data analyst must have a grounding in statistics as it helps in understanding algorithms.

  5. Communication Skills: A data analyst is expected to work with different people. So, one should be able to communicate technical findings to non-technical co-workers to solve business problems. 

Data Analyst Job Description:

As a data analyst, you will need to:

  • Identify, analyze, and interpret trends or patterns in complex data sets that help in boosting business.

  • Import data from various external data sources to bring meaningful insights to the business.

  • Create data visualizations to effectively convey findings to management that helps in the decision-making process.

  • Filter and clean data by examining computer reports and performance indicators.

  • Work with management, IT teams, and data scientists to determine organizational goals.

  • Collect customer requirements, determine technical issues, and design reports to meet data analysis needs.

  • Identify new sources of data and methods to improve data collection, analysis, and reporting.

  • Collect, understand, and document detailed business requirements using appropriate tools and techniques.

  • Locate and define new process improvement opportunities.

Data Analyst Qualification: A degree in fields such as computers, statistics, economics, etc. is often required. Irrespective of your degree, to succeed as a data analyst you must be able, one must master the relevant skills mentioned above.

Data Analyst Salary: The salary of a data analyst usually is dependent on the organization and job responsibilities. But it varies due to the niche(s) one specializes in. But, suffice it say, the market for data scientists is good right now. 

Data analytics is a quickly growing field and highly skilled analysts have demand in all sectors. But, you have to be outstanding and exhibit data analytics skills to stand out from the crowd. So, what are you waiting for? 

Data Mining and Data Auditing Skills

As mentioned above, data mining and data auditing are must-have skills for any data analyst. Data mining is the practice of examining large, pre-existing databases in order to generate new information, whereas data auditing involves profiling the data and assessing the impact of poor quality data on the organization’s performance and profits. So make sure to brush on these skills.

Testing Skills

Testing skills are required to be a big data analyst, as he/she will be carrying out A/B testing based on different hypotheses that directly and indirectly impact different Key Performance Indicators.

Basic Statistical Skills

Usually, it is the Data Scientist that works on the statistical part but even as a data analyst you should have basic statistical knowledge as it will help you to select the right approach while dealing with a particular situation.

Machine Learning

Again like statistical skills, machine learning is something that most data scientists work on but if you are working in a large organization then there is a chance that you will need to know about machine learning methods like Decision Trees, K-Means, etc.

Data Visualization and Communication

This is one of the most important skills that a data analyst must possess. Data visualization is the presentation of data in a pictorial or graphical format. This helps the management to understand the data easily and quick. The success of data visualization depends on how well you can communicate it to management.

Topics:
data analysts ,big data ,data science ,big data careers

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