Today’s exponential data growth has resulted in new Information Technology careers focusing on data. Today, we’re looking at data analytics and answering, “Is data analytics a good career?”
We will look at the roles and responsibilities of the data analyst, what skills they need, the data analytics career path, salary information, and much more. We’ll wrap things up by sharing a top data analytics course.
But since many data analytics jobs have similar names, let’s start with a core definition.
What is Data Analytics?
Professionals use data analytics to analyze raw data and develop actionable insights that enhance and inform strategies and increase business intelligence. Or, data analytics takes vast sets of unorganized and seemingly random data. It organizes (“cleans”) it to discern patterns, drawing logical conclusions to help make better data-driven business decisions.
So, what do data analytics jobs entail?
Data Analytics Roles and Responsibilities
Most data analytics jobs involve the following:
- Data processing. Data processing involves importing, cleaning, changing, and validating the collected data into forms that can be used for analytical tools. This process also covers monitoring the data quality.
- Automation procedures. Massive datasets are challenging to deal with, and many of the associated tasks are tedious and repetitive. Thus, data analytics covers designing automation processes and algorithms that increase the efficiency of data analysis and organization.
- Applying analytical procedures. The data analyst deploys statistical, mining, and analytical procedures over large datasets to extract meaningful patterns and inferences.
- Data visualization and representation. The processed data must be presented in a form that anyone can understand. This responsibility entails showing the data as charts, graphs, and tables and developing relational databases for better classification. This role also covers creating crisp data reports for people in the organization to understand.
- Drafting reports. The data analyst prepares reports of their observations for external and internal audiences. The reports must be clear and provide a detailed description of business insights and future forecasts.
Skills Required for a Data Analytics Career
Although every organization has different expectations for data analysts, these skills are commonly the most in demand for data analytics jobs.
SQL is the standard way data analysts communicate with databases. SQL cleans, organizes, extracts, and processes data sets. This language is the most requested skill by potential employers and is essential to data analytics, making it a sensible starting point for your learning.
Data management involves collecting, organizing, and storing data efficiently and safely in compliance with best practices.
Open-source programs like Python and R let proficient users write computing language that cleans, analyzes, and visualizes data sets. These programming languages are relatively easy to learn and offer similar capabilities.
Machine learning is considered a subset of the larger field of artificial intelligence (AI). It creates more accurate predictions over time with more data it processes. Self-learning algorithms have broad implications in business since they can predict trends based on historical contexts.
As we’ve mentioned earlier, data analytics is all about numbers. If you want a successful career in analytics, you need fundamental mathematical skills. Additionally, big data analytics requires a solid foundation of mathematical concepts such as linear algebra, probability, statistics, and multivariate calculus.
Data visualization uses visual elements like charts, graphs, and maps to convey patterns to help teams and organizations make sense of the data.
Data analysts need good communication skills and a healthy dose of business sense. After all, a business analyst needs to understand the problems and challenges a business faces before they can develop solutions.
A Data Analyst Career Path in Detail
To begin, you should have the right mindset. Data analysts work with numbers. If you want to enter the field, you should be interested in working with numbers. In addition, it helps to have statistical and analytical skills.
Next, having a bachelor’s degree in computer science, mathematics, or statistics is helpful. If you lack degrees in these fields, you can enroll in entry-level data analytics and business development courses to compensate for the shortfall. Additionally, some people transition into data analysis from a related field such as business or economics, usually by upgrading their skills mid-career through data analytics certifications and related courses.
A master’s degree is essential for gaining research-based positions and higher analytics job profiles.
Finally, you should upgrade skills in the technical requirements such as the Hadoop ecosystem, Python, SQL, or R for predictive analytics. You can round out your education by taking an online data analytics program.
But now, let’s spell out why data analytics is a good career choice.
Why Data Analytics is a Good Career Option
Here are the ten main reasons why data analytics is a good career option.
- Data analysts are in high demand. According to a report released by Analytics Insight, our world will see over 137,000 new jobs in data science by 2025.
- It’s an easy career to start. As we mentioned earlier, getting started in data analytics is easy. While a degree would undoubtedly make the road smoother, it’s not mandatory. A candidate with a good skillset and work experience is just as likely to get a position as someone fresh out of college with a degree.
- Data generation is higher than ever. According to Statista, the 2020 projection for worldwide data creation was 59 zettabytes — with further, inevitable increases on the horizon. In 2019, worldwide IoT connections generated a data volume of 13.6 zettabytes, which is predicted to rise to 79 zettabytes by 2025.
- Big data will keep getting bigger. Big data is extensive in volume, sources, and speed, and more enterprises are adopting big data in a large-scale capacity. This reason ties into our other reasons why data analytics is a good career choice, relating to the overall increase of data generation and adopting data in decision-making.
- Data analytics offers many growth opportunities. If you enter the data analytics field, you can take your career in many different directions. Here’s a small sample of positions you can grow into:
- Analytics Associate
- Big Data Analyst
- Big Data Analytics Architect
- Big Data Analytics Business Consultant
- Big Data Engineer
- Big Data Solution Architect
- Business Intelligence and Analytics Consultant
- Business Analyst
- Data Analyst
- Data Engineer
- Data Scientist
- Marketing Analyst
- Metrics and Analytics Specialist
- Operations Analyst
- Systems Analyst
- You can work with many of today’s popular brands and names. Choose data analytics if you’d like to work with high-profile companies and products. Here’s a brief list of ideal landing spots for data analytics professionals:
- General Motors
- JP Morgan Chase
- Time Warner
- The world is trending towards greater digital transformation. It’s a digital world, and it’s growing. More businesses and organizations are digitizing, leading to an upsurge in data creation, requiring more data analytics professionals to tackle the growing loads.
- There’s a shortage of data analytics professionals. There is a significant talent gap between available positions and qualified professionals. If you want a field not overcrowded by the competition, you need to pick data analytics.
- You can take responsibility and make crucial decisions. Data analysts add value to today’s businesses and organizations by helping make informed decisions and granting them an edge over the competition. This situation means you become part of the organization’s decision-making process, working with key personnel and creating valuable contacts. If you want a career where you feel you’re making a difference, go with data analytics.
- Data analysts are well compensated. Let’s finish this list with one of the reasons why data analytics is a great career choice. According to Salary.com, the average data analyst salary in the United States is $83,557. Similarly, Indeed.com reports similar salaries at $76,007 annually, going as high as $117,014.
Outlook: Data Analyst Jobs
Let’s see what the data analytics job landscape looks like. According to the United States Board of Labor Statistics, data scientist employment is projected to grow 36 percent between 2021 and 2031, much faster than the average for other occupations.
Additionally, the USBLS projects about 13,500 openings for data scientists each year, on average, over that decade.
So, it’s safe to say that the job outlook for data analysts is overwhelmingly positive.
What Industries Hire Data Analysts?
According to LinkedIn, the top five industries currently hiring data analysts are:
- Government and Public Sector
- Healthcare and Medicine
- Transportation and Travel
How to Improve Your Data Analytics Skills
If you have the right skills, you can get a great position as a data analyst and set yourself up to quickly advance into one of many possible related careers later. If you have the knowledge and skills, your career choices expand considerably, and your chances of advancement increase.
That’s why resources like this data analytics bootcamp make sense. This intense, 24-week program provides valuable training in critical data analytics concepts through applied learning and hands-on projects. The rapidly growing field of data analytics offers aspiring professionals fantastic opportunities; sign up for this bootcamp and begin taking advantage of today’s golden age of data.