Data Analyst Job Description
Every day in the modern world, people face an unimaginable quantity of various information. Those can come from different sources about a diversity of topics, yet we don’t spend extra effort on things that mismatch our interests. However, sometimes this information can become a precious ground for predicting and planning future business strategies and making correct decisions. It is the exact moment when data analysts step into the game. Their general duties come down to collecting, processing, organizing, and presenting the necessary data. Naturally, the topics of their research activity may differ noticeably, covering the needs of numerous organizations and their specific necessities. With so many existing companies, there is nothing unusual that data analysts are not only in high demand but also earn respectfully.
What Does a Data Analyst Do?
A data analyst is a professional who has both skills and knowledge to gather the essential data for choosing the right business or even governing decisions. Such information can find lots of applications when entering a new market, developing a new product, or simply detecting the organization’s weaknesses. As simple as it sounds, data analysts work with data, and almost all their work wraps around it. The process starts with identifying the sought-for information and then collecting it. Then comes the problem of refining the collected data, cleaning it from all mistakes, repeating, and unnecessary information. Afterward, the worker analyzes the gathered data and makes conclusions on the entire problem. Finally, data analysts interpret the received results and provide them to the people in charge. Fortunately or not, data analysis is a job related to IT. To increase the efficiency and the accuracy of collected data, analysts often use special programs that directly influence the requirements.
Data Analyst Responsibilities
- Research data to find and report on root cause analysis reports of prioritized concerns; provide data or business rules guidance to fix data quality issues, or make recommendations to improve data performance or use
- Obtain data from many sources, synthesis it, and effectively and clearly convey the results in textual and graphic form
- Organize and manage a backlog of data product development features and user stories
- Transform and test data products using programming languages such as Python, R, and SQL
- Prepare user-centric visualizations and dashboards using Tableau and other BI tools (e.g., Power BI)
- Mine and analyze data from databases to drive optimization and improvement of business strategies
- Develop protocols and automated workflows for importing and exporting data, as well as analytics and related process enhancements, following oversight, technical, and business requirements
- Write and keep clear and simple documentation in approved documentation repositories so that stakeholders can comprehend goals, operational steps, data dictionaries, business glossaries, data flows, and preservation plans
Data Analyst Requirements
There are a few possible routes for becoming a data analyst, which provides a number of possibilities for newcomers to enter the industry. Besides proficiency with a range of skills and tools, it’s crucial to build up a correct and comprehensive knowledge of the subject. Future professionals can obtain it through:
- Bachelor’s degree
The first opportunity is quite common – getting relevant education. Regarding the data analyst occupation, it would be plausible to have an education that relates to mathematics, statistics, analytics, or computer science. This choice can significantly boost both knowledge and the chances of entering the profession.
- Professional certificates and courses
It is also a great way to get the necessary knowledge and experience, which may be even more useful. At the moment, many professional programs/courses can teach basic skills and provide with the tasks one may face in actual working conditions. Some of those projects can become a perfect foundation for the portfolio, raising the value of the employee. Moreover, this choice can turn out to be a reasonable decision for people who choose to shift jobs.
- Studying on your own
It may be the most difficult approach, but some people may find it most suitable. One will have to find necessary skills and topics on the internet and then study them to the best of their abilities. Afterwards, the person can try to fill their portfolio with some personal projects.
Data Analyst Skills & Proficiencies
Although studying is a must for a data analyst, skills are no less crucial, if not more. As well as every other profession, data analysts have a necessity for both soft and hard skills. Among soft skills, it would be beneficial to have such as communication, good teamwork, creativity, critical thinking, etc. However, taking into account that data analysis is the work related to IT, it shouldn’t be a surprise that it places high value exactly on hard skills. For example, some of them are:
- Programming (Python, R, Oracle, SQL)
- Proficiency with database tools (Microsoft Excel, SPSS, SAS)
- Statistical Knowledge
- Data Visualization (Tableau, Qilk)
- Written and Verbal Communication
- Attention to detail
Data Analyst Salary Expectations
The good news for every data analyst is that this occupation is not only in high demand but pays quite decently. According to Glassdoor, the estimated pay for a data analyst in the US is about 74,703$. Although this is already a pretty good sum, many offers suggest even more. Of course, their requirements are also higher, but it only shows room for future growth. This way, on Indeed, it’s possible to find offers for senior data analysts ranging from 60-90 and 90-110 thousand USD. On top of all that, a data analyst is a perfect foundation for becoming a data scientist, which can bring even more profits.
To sum it up, it’s reasonable to state that the occupation of a data analyst is a perfect opportunity for both people who only enter the workforce and those who aim to shift careers. On top of decent payments, this profession also provides the opportunity to grow professionally and even change jobs in other sectors of the IT industry. That’s why, if you consider becoming a data analyst in the future, there will definitely be a need for an outstanding resume. As an example, we can provide data analyst resume sample. On the other hand, if you ever need any help with your resume, feel free to reach our professional writers at ResumeEdge.