How to Become a Data Analyst?
Data Analyst is one of the most sought after job in today’s employment market. Data analyst, as the name suggests, are responsible for retrieving or collecting data, organizing it and drawing conclusions based on the same. Basically, they are responsible for conversion of complex data to simple conclusions, which can be used by the organization/company to undertake better business decision. A Data Analyst, can be involved in any of the multiple stages of the analytical process. From setting up of a data-collection system, to providing insights and even training of new Data Analysts.
Today, the demand for Data Analyst is soaring high in fields including, government, education, finance, consulting, manufacturing and even pharmaceuticals. Every company is on the lookout for a Data Analyst, as data, can provide insight into the current functioning of the company and help the company cater to their customer/end users better. Catering to this broad range of sectors, there are diverse types of Data Analysts in the market, ranging from Data Analysts in Marketing to DataQuality Management and Business Intelligence. The functions performed by a Data Analyst might even very according to the type of data they are operating with and the kind of client projects undertaken (social media, inventory, marketing, etc.) by the company.
Data Analyst require a strong skill set to deal with complex data analysis, the ability to communicate well and precise attention to detail. Strong verbal and written skills, are also a necessity, along with understanding numbers, as the Data Analyst, has to provide a report on the conclusions drawn, based on the data studied. Data Analyst use multiple tools to deliver the reports required, such as Excel, Google Tag Manager, Google Adwords, SQL, Google Analytics and more. However, when exploring Data Analyst as a career option, one needs to look more closely at the Job Description or the day-to-day functioning of a Data Analyst. An expatiated view of the same includes:
- Analyzing Data and producing reports
One of the key aspects of the Job Descriptions of a Data Analyst is simplifying data provided (or collected), using appropriate tools and techniques, into reports. These reports help the company in gauging the progress, alter policies-procedures and gives an acumen at the latest trends of the sector. Producing and maintaining internal and external report (client based), is what a Data Analyst, spends a major amount of time doing. Creating a narrative with data is what it is required of a Data Analyst, in any field or department.
- Designing and carrying out survey
While sometimes a Data Analyst, can work with secondary data (data collected by somebody else), sometimes they might have to engage in primary data collection, organization and analysis. This mining data from primary as well as secondary sources, call for excellent attention to detail skills. The ability to design a survey, in sync with the needs of the employer or the task is another requirement that the Data Analyst, should justify. The next step, involves, analyzing and interpreting the data, to meet the requirements of the company/employer.
- Attention to detail to patterns
With intricate data, any Data Analyst, needs to have the skill to spot a pattern or patterns in the data analyzed. This is essential to produce meaningful reports which can give an insight into trends and help make recommendations in improving company performance or to a client. Regular analysis on a quarterly, weekly or monthly basis, helps the Data Analyst, to notice such substantial patterns and accordingly notify the same in the report.
- Team work
Data Analyst contrary to the popular notion, work in collaborating with different sectors of the company. They might work in teams with the technology teams, management or other Data Analyst to set goals, collect data required and submit reports to respective department. From setting up of a goal, to presenting the final report or giving the final presentation, a Data Analyst, works with many individuals at every step. This, makes team work an effective requirement for any Data Analyst, working in any sector/field.
- Other functions performed:
- Fixing data- related problems and code problems.
- Working with web developers for data collection optimization.
- Monitoring and auditing data quality delivered.
- Creation of graphs, visualizations, dashboards and effective data collection systems.
- Set and track various progress indicators on a weekly, monthly or quarterly basis.
TOP COMPANIES THAT HIRE DATA ANALYST
With the market for Data Analyst, booming, there are numerous companies and startups which are burgeoning in India. These companies work provide wide range of services, from data management to providing other companies avenues to opt for technologies for better data management. Some of the giant player of the market who hire Data Analyst are:
- Fractal Analytics
- Mu Sigma
- Crayon Data
- Global Analytics
- Tiger Analytics
- Catersian Consulting
- Exl Analytics
SKILL SET REQUIRED
Data Analyst require a precise skill set, which can help them in acing the working with complex data and presenting excellent reports which meet the requirement and goals of the company. The job role is a culmination a strategic approach, technical skills and a team work mindset. Here a few skills to match with ones, before considering Data Analyst, as a job opportunity.
- Aptitude for math – Working with intricate and hefty data, calls for good skills in the field of mathematics.
- Attention to detail – One of the most important skills is the attention to detail. Data is precise and unique every time, thus, calling for an impeccable vigilance and meticulous handling of sensitive date.
- Critical aptitude – Forming conclusions after the analysis of the data, requires critical thinking skills, making it a much sought after skill for a Data Analyst.
- Analytic expertise – Without analysis skills, no Data Analyst, can excel in his/her field. Dealing with a large number of facts, figures and information requires swift analytics skills.
- Communication skills – This skill, comes to use when the data is used to draw conclusions and is presented in the form of a report or presentation, which in turn calls for good communication (oral and written) skills.
Most entry level Data Analyst job positions require only a Bachelor’s degree, however, a Master’s degree is required for climbing up to upper level jobs in the field. Education in subjects such as:
- Computer science
- Information Management
- Business Information System
(Or another other degree related to the field) is ideal, as it helps to build a base for strong analytical and math skills. Further certification is required, depending upon the sector one opts for.
INSTITUTES PROVIDING RELATED COURSES
There are numerous institutes which offer certificate courses (online and offline) and degrees in the field of data analysis and management. Some of the top institutes which offer these courses, degrees and training, we as follows:
- Jigsaw Academy
- Upx Academy
- IMS Pro School
- Ivy Pro School
- Nikhil Analytics
In terms of the best courses offered in India are:
- PGP in Business Analytics & Business Intelligence – Great Lakes Institute of Management
- Business Analytics and Intelligence – Indian Institute of Management (IIM B)
- Postgraduate Diploma in Business Analytics (PGDBA) – IIM Calcutta, ISI Kolkata, IIT Kharagpur (Tri-institute program)
- Certificate program in Predictive Business Analytics – BRIDGE School of Management
- Executive Program in Business Analytics – MISB Bocconi and Jigsaw Academy
- Post Graduate Program in Business Analytics – Praxis Business School
- Post Graduate Program in Data Science, Business Analytics and Big Data (PGP-DS-BA-BigData) – Aegis School of Business, Data Science & Telecommunication
- Certificate Program in Business Analytics – NarseeMonjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS), Bangalore
- PG Diploma Program in Data Analytics – IIIT Bangalore & UpGrad
- Business Intelligence and Big Data – IMT Ghaziabad
SALARY AND WORKING HOURS
- A Data Analyst earn an average salary of Rs. 349,284 per year in India, as per PayScale.
- The trend says that after an average of 10 years of experience, people move on to other job positions.
- Other benefits including bonuses, health benefits, pension schemes, may vary from company to company or sector to sector.
- A full time job opportunity will be traditionally 9 -5, while some companies hire on part time basis too.
A Data Analyst adds enormous value to an organization, by preventing businesses from making bad business decisions. With the right skill set and qualification, growth in the field of data analysis and management is immense, as it also, acts as a platform to other great job opportunities including, Operation Manager, Senior Business Analyst, Project Manager (Information Technology) and more.