An emerging industry in the 21st century is the Big Data Industry. It sounds exciting, and it should definitely intrigue you. It’s a well-known fact that Data has already taken over the world and is here to stay. Regardless of how small or big your company is, you collect data. The difference is how and whether you use this data to improve and scale your organisation.

When you collect data, it’s often in large quantities and does not make any sense. These numbers are just gibberish to a regular business owner. This is where data science comes in. According to Wikipedia, “Data science is an interdisciplinary field that uses scientific methods, processes, algorithms and systems to extract knowledge and insights from many structural and unstructured data.”

The main objective of data science and those who work in data science, often called data scientists, is to deal with extensive data sets, analyse it, and ultimately derive valuable insights that could be understandable by everyone. From these insights, a business owner can make well-informed decisions that help him steer the company into success.

One of the most significant roles in data science is a data analyst. Being an emerging industry, there’s still a lot of misinformation about data science.  In this article, we’ll be answering some FAQs on data analysts. Hopefully, by the end, you can determine for yourself whether it’s worth it to invest in a data analyst for your business or not.

What Is A Data Analyst?

A data analyst is someone who gathers, cleans, and performs a comprehensive analysis of data using statistical models. In simpler terms, he takes numbers and data from your company and transforms it into an understandable language. These insights are then presented to the higher-ups for better decision making.

How Can A Data Analyst Help My Business?

We are surrounded by data. It’s just that the majority of us aren’t aware of it and how to use said data in such a way that it can improve our businesses. One excellent example of how a data analyst can help a company move towards success is through its marketing department.

You can conduct extensive market research of your consumers and competitors on your own. The problem is, what do you do with that data? Say you ran surveys. Now what? You can’t exactly go to the board and present them with raw data. It would be too complex, not to mention exhausting to go through raw data yourself.

This is where a data analyst comes in. From the data that you collected, he can provide you with valuable insights such as:


-          What do your consumers want? Is there a gap in the market that you can fill with a new product?

-          How much should you price your products/services? Measure your consumer’s price sensitivity. Would they be receptive of a price change? You would think that lowering your prices would increase your sales. However, some studies found that too low of a price can actually turn off consumers as it’s associated with low quality. A data analyst can measure price sensitivity and give you the middle ground.

-          How can you reduce your overhead costs? Maybe you’re spending too much on an advertisement that your consumers don’t even like. Or you’re losing money by trying to target the wrong segment of the population.

-          What should be your next campaign? You don’t have to spend an entire day to brainstorm exciting new campaigns. All you need to do is to listen to the wants and needs of your customers, and you’ll know exactly what you need to do?

These are just some of the valuable information that you can get by hiring a data analyst.

What Are The Qualifications I Should Look For In A Data Analyst?

When you’re investing in data science, you need to find a credible and reliable data analyst. While you don’t need a university degree in data science, it’s best to hire someone with a relevant degree such as Statistics, Math, or Economics.

Key Skills Of A Data Analyst

Here are some of the important skills to look for in a data analyst

-          High proficiency in Mathematics

-          Fluent in statistical models

-          Great at programming languages: SQL, Oracle, Python

-          Excellent ability to transform statistical models and data into chewable information

-          Methodical and logical

-          Can work and meet deadlines

-          Attention to detail

-          Interpersonal skills

-          Written and verbal communication skills


What Are The Key Responsibilities Of A Data Analyst?

The responsibilities of a data analyst include but are not limited to:

-          Using computerised and statistical models to extract data

-          Cleaning the data

-          Create Predictive Analytics for future data collection and analysis

-          Data collection from primary and secondary data sources

-          Integrating and implementing improved data collection techniques and storage to optimise data analysis

-          Performing further analysis to ensure no errors were made

-          Interpreting data into understandable insights for business owners