An analyst, in simple terms, is someone who is pretty skilled at analysis and analyses different things. The above definition, although being correct, is way too broad for someone trying to research and understand the job role before venturing into the field. For starters, when we say that an analyst performs analysis, his role and the responsibilities with it change concerning the sector where he works and hence, creates lots of confusion. The best way to go about researching the job role would be to have conversations with people already doing the job, in this case, analysts. The research for this blog was also done in a similar way where a few analysts from various fields were interviewed and inferences were drawn from those conversations which might help the fresh graduates understand the basic requirements and the day-to-day life of an analyst. So the questions were as follows:
What does your average workday look like?
My day starts at 8 am where we have a meeting with the US team followed by an internal team meeting at 10.30 am where we plan out how we’re gonna move forward with the existing projects. Once we have a thoroughly planned approach, we move onto execution. The day goes around in either analyzing data for projects or preparing reports and presentations for clients. We can also have a meeting at 4 pm on some days to discuss the progress or some specific requirements of clients. Our typical day ends at 6 pm but there are times when we work until late at night on our projects to work on our deadlines.Shubham Runthla, Data Analyst at Saarthee
My day starts at 10 am when we arrive at our offices and take a 15 min break for some chit-chat while having our daily coffee at the cafeteria before starting our day. After that, if there’s a specific training program, we attend that. If not, then we’ll discuss and plan how we’re going to move forward with our project. Once we’ve finished our planning, we work for 2-3 hours, have lunch, and get back to work. Our day ends by 6 pm unless there is a really important presentation or report to finish for a client. We have foosball and table tennis tables where we can blow off some steam after working for a few hours of work during our workday and then get back to work again once we’ve cooled down.Likith Kumar, Analyst at KPMG
The one common thing, apart from the fact that their job requires some form of analysis, is that analysts, at the start of the day, carefully plan the course of their action before jumping onto execution. They have a pretty structured approach to whatever task that has been assigned to them and always keep a feedback mechanism to optimize their work. Their role can’t be generalized after a certain point and can get very specific according to the field or sector that they’re working in.
What tools and skillsets are required to flourish in the field of analytics?
When it comes to tools, the most common answers were Microsoft Excel and Powerpoint, followed by SQL and Tableau. Analysts can use various other tools as well, depending on various factors like the requirements, the sector they work in, or the organization they work in where the tools could either have been developed in-house or publicly available.
As for the skillsets, the most basic yet crucial skillset every analyst mentioned was a candidate’s analytical skill. Organizations when hiring for analyst positions tend to take note of a candidate’s problem-solving and thought structuring approach.
The tools that you use at your job, although being important, are secondary in nature. Problem-solving, Planning, Creativity, and Data Presentation will go a long way in your career. The importance of the above-mentioned skills can’t be emphasized and should be given equal importance by candidates.Shubham Runthla
Your enthusiasm to take initiatives and active attempts to learn something new from every project that you get can make you stand out in an organization. Our generation has lost patience which is crucial for success in any career out there.Likith Kumar
What is it that you practiced during the placements that worked for you? Any final tips that you might want to pass on to the candidates sitting for similar roles?
Questions on quantitative aptitude and logical reasoning are basic requirements that need to be practiced but the more important part is giving time to solving logical puzzles where you sometimes have to sit for an hour to brainstorm and think through your puzzles to develop a structured approach. This practice comes in handy during your interviews at times. Lastly, it is imperative that candidates give time to reading good books and developing that habit to amass as much knowledge as they canShubham Runthla
Other than general aptitude, I would highly focus on making a crisp and concise resume that highlights your personality to the correct extent and ensure that it neither overvalues nor undervalues your skills because both can be harmful to your profile during the interview. Give mock interviews to friends and take appropriate feedback from your network. Develop a good network of friends and seniors whom you can talk to and take advice from because it can really help you at times and massively boost your confidence.Nasrul Haque, Business Analyst at Tredence.
It is important to understand the entire placement procedure in advance for whichever company you’re sitting for. Candidates need to research thoroughly and try to understand the company’s requirements and compare them with their skills before starting their preparation because that gives them a structured approach for preparing for all the rounds in the company’s placement procedure. Lastly, I would recommend the candidates to not go out of their way and pretend to be somebody in the interview that they aren’t for their personality and skills because it can be very counterproductiveLikith Kumar
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