Is Data Analyst A Good Career Path?

There has never been a good time to know if data analysis is a great career path than now. Approximately 2.5 quintillion bytes are churned out each day, although it is just a little portion, compared to what the future holds. As the data of an organization grows, there is the likelihood that the organization will want to make use of that data, leading to their need for data analysts. 

Thus, the high demand for a data analyst career brings about a notable increase in the salary of a data analyst. Many of the data analysts earn way above seventy thousand dollars per annum. Besides that, many of the data analysts can work in a team and contribute to the decision-making process at the top level of the organization. Many of them can also easily travel or move and work remotely from any part of the world.

Whatever the case, the salary, benefits, and job security of a data analyst are quite considerable. This is what this article is going to look at. In the end, the decision to become a data analyst will solely depend on you.

Is Data Analysis The Right career path?

Since 2020, CIO.com and other forecasters predicted it that the data analyst career path will become one of the most sought-after careers in the world. Many companies have started since then to prepare for that. 

Moving towards data analysis promises excellent career prospects. For that reason, more and more people are looking for ways to switch careers in the field. Well, we all know that career-changing is not all about the salary and job security, but the satisfaction you can derive from it. So, how do you know if the data analyst career path is the right one for you? First of all, we need to understand what a data analyst does.

Many people don’t know the career to choose because they’re multi-talented or a lot of other reasons. If you’re in this category, check out: How To Choose A Career If You’re Not Sure What To Study

What does a Data Analyst do?

To know if a data analyst career path is for you, you need to understand what you can do as a data analyst. Data analysts carry out the task of analyzing raw data to be able to draw out meaningful insights which they turn into actionable recommendations. 

Hence, the company employing the data analyst, after getting the recommendations, seeks ways to get better by making smarter decisions. Here are ways that data analyst performs their tasks:

  • Design, implement and sustain databases on and continued basis
  • Collaborate with top stakeholders of an organization to identify precise challenges facing the business which need urgent attention
  • Collect and organize raw data from internal and external sources
  • Make the raw data clean and get it ready for analysis 
  • Analyse the data obtained using the right approach
  • Interpret the finding from the analysis and transform them into visualizations in form of graphs and charts
  • Share the information with major stakeholders and give the advice on the right strategies and actions to implement in the future.
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A data analyst majorly relies on statistical analysis, problem-solving, and communication skills to perform the tasks well. At this point, you need to ask yourself if you can do all this as you choose a data analyst career path.

What Skills and Background Do You Need For a Data Analysis Career Path?

Considering a career path as a data analyst is much more than answering yes to the above question. You will need to assess your background and know if you have all it takes to move towards this career path. 

Therefore, you must have worked in a job role that involves math, statistics, computer science, business information systems,, or information management. If that is the case, then, you are ready for this journey.

However, if you have not found yourself in any of the following but you have been able to take up roles in marketing, HR, customer service, and other professionals, you may use the problem-solving, database management, and communication skills you gained from these positions to kick-start your data analyst career path.

Although we cannot deny that some careers in data analysis require degrees in certain fields, that does not mean that there are no opportunities for professional data analysts who are not trained from the scratch. 

But then, the moment you pick up your pieces and start working as a data analyst, it is necessary to go back to school for proper training if need be. You will also need to get some certifications to have a stronger knowledge of this field. 

These short courses can be got online, either free or paid. Some sites like Udemy, Coursera, Alison, and others, offer these short courses.

Is there Great Demand for a Data Analysis Career Path?

Yes, there is a great demand for a data analytics career path. Several companies today

Telecommunications, insurance, healthcare, financial companies, among others also use big data in their operations. 

With the growth in the adoption of data, their range of applications arises. There is a transformation of industries with the penetration of data. In marketing, there has been a change in the industry as people can now interact one-on-one using the help of data. 

The healthcare industry in the US can use big data to improve the quality and efficiency of their activities while creating over $300 billion in value. 

More so, larger retail that uses big data can increase its operations by 60%. The good news is that it keeps going high!

Here is what to expect as you go into data analytics as a career path:

Competitive salary

Data analyst career path promises a good salary. The average salary of a data analyst in the United States, according to Indeed, is around $75,000 per year. With more experience, your salary will keep increasing as a data analyst.

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A thriving market: 

The market for data analyst career paths is still new and growing. While there are many data analysts in the business already, there are still few qualified professionals to fill certain roles. Linked Workforce Report predicts that data analysts will continue to be among the most hunted jobs even beyond 2022. 

However, there will continue to be the need for the generation of large quantities of data across industries. What this means is that, as the need for data analysts increases, the salary also takes an upward movement.

Opportunity to make an impact: 

Data analysis is of utmost importance in the decision-making of an organization. What this means is as a data analyst, you will also make important decisions in any business that employs you. 

You will also work closely with the stakeholders, offering your professional advice and recommendations and mapping out strategies to move the business forward, using your expertise.

Making an impact through your job is easy. Discover: 15+ Jobs That Make A Difference In People’s Lives

Every business needs a data analyst: 

McKinsey recently reported that by 2025, the US economy will be $16 trillion smaller than its current situation. As a result, machines are going to take over most jobs performed by human beings. McKinsey did not stop at that, rather it forecasts that for every ten jobs created through automation, two additional jobs will be lost.

Experts, rather than being worried about machines taking over the jobs of humans, are seeking ways to create more jobs for humans and how to use data as the major driving force for these jobs. Well, every business needs a data-driven analytic strategy to thrive. The basic idea is to gather data and make something out of it. This idea is simple and that is keeping contemporary data analysts on their career path.

You can develop your transferable skills: 

Transferable skills are soft skills that play good roles in one’s career life. For instance, skills like Phyton can play a major role in the design of video games and web development. Following the data analyst career path will offer you uncountable opportunities in major industries and job positions.

What Skills do you need as a Data Analyst?

As a beginner in the field, you will need to get your skills honed to be able to measure up to the demands of this field. The following are the beginner skills you must have:

1. Python: Python is one of the simplest programming languages and the best for beginners to go for. They will give you an idea of what to expect in the field.

2. Statistics: Programming is a waste of time if you do not have the statistics to interpret it. Even at that, you cannot talk about data without mentioning statistics. Numerous statistical skills will enable you to build a successful data analyst career path. For instance, having the basic knowledge of mean, median and mode will help you to present your data well.

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3. Mathematics: You must have heard that data is a game of numbers. Yes, that is true and this is where mathematics comes into play. You will not just have the basic knowledge of mathematics, you will have the advanced knowledge of linear algebra, framing data, matrices, and others.

4. Machine learning: This is one of the major skills you will need to learn if you want to be successful in your career as a data analyst. It just entails a combination of multivariable calculus, linear equation, and statistics.

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of job role can you take as a data analyst?

You need expertise in data analytics to become better at what you do. Fortunately, the moment you choose the data analyst career path, you have more than one option before you. What this means is that there are different job roles data analysts play. Such include:

1. Business intelligence analyst

2. Data analyst

3. Data engineer

4. Data scientist

5. Quantitative analyst

6. Operations analyst

7. Marketing analyst

8. Data analytics consultant

9. IT systems analyst

10. Project manager

What do data analysts do?

The work of data analysts involve a range of tasks. They collect, clean, analyze and interpret data

What skills do data analysts possess?

Data analysts must possess such skills as analytical, problem-solving, eye to detail, time management, ability to interpret data, etc.

What programming language must a data analyst have skills for?

They include JavaScript, XML, ETL, among others. They should also have database knowledge like Db2, SQLite, SQL, and others.

What is the difference between data profiling and data mining?

Data profiling focuses on analyzing individual attributes of data and as such provides valuable information on data attributes, including data type, frequency, length, etc. Data mining means the ability to identify unusual records, analyze data clusters, sequence discovery, etc.

Conclusion

From what we have been able to analyze in this article, a data analyst career path is that of an envious path to follow. It has huge prospects and handsome rewards for its professionals. The job market is booming with varieties. If you are convinced that data analysis is what you need now to hone an alternative career path, then the decision is wholly yours to make. 

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