The role of a data analyst can be defined as an individual who is good at analyzing different things and also lead the charge in collecting, analyzing key data points to make business decisions. As freshers, who wants to pursue this profession as their career needs to have all sight of knowledge before stepping into this field. The best way is to research about the roles and responsibilities of an Data Analyst. First and foremost read articles, blogs, latest news about the field and the importance of this role in companies in terms of future aspects. Furthermore you can have conservation 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 at different years of experience were put up a question to and conclusions were drawn from those conversations which might help the candidates who wants to purse and understand the basic requirements and a career path of a data analyst. So the questions were as follows:
Job role of a Data Analyst?
‘I work in cognizant company as a Intelligent process automation and in data analytics department. It is a USA healthcare insurance company, where insurances were claimed by the policyholder for compensation of the expenses incurred for the treatment. The company allowed us the database access where my role was to extract the data required by the client and reports were put together. Another task was in intelligent process automation, automating the repetitive task using Python, Sas, Sql, Ms Acess, Advance excel VBA and Macros.’
Deepak Alur, Data Analyst at Cognizant, Bangalore.
‘I work as Data Analyst in the data modernization team at niveus Solutions Private Limited. So I work on projects for a well-known client from various sectors. My role is to extract their data from wherever it’s present and transform it to a format we need and then load it in a database based on the type of data. Next thing is to perform visualization on it using various tools. After that we try to understand the patterns, cause of the pattern, analyze the cause and rectify using machine learning algorithms you can also predict and forecast future values.’
Shreya Naik, Analyst at Niveus Solutions, Mangalore.
‘I am in Ernst & Young Global Limited as a Data Analyst in internal Audit Risk domain. My responsibility is finding anomalies in different processes of clients that may leads to losses over procurement, Delayed payments, price variation, etc. Internal auditors do audit in their own firm before external auditors does the audit. So we identify risks, than work on transforming and extracting data from client systems and spot the anomalies according to the scenario and process. Then present it using visualization tools, graphical ways or any other representation.’
Ashitosh Tilve, Senior Analyst at EY, Mumbai
A day in the life of Data Analyst?
‘I login at 9:00 am, usually my day doesn’t start until I’ve finished my first cup of coffee. My typical day starts at 9:30 am usually includes, but is not limited to, meetings with the analytics team about half an hour to discuss the tasks of the day and brainstorm for possible solutions. When everything is clear, I start working on the data. Analyzing data consists of three main tasks: gathering the data, cleaning the data, and finally processing the data. Furthermore there is lunch break at 1:00 pm and than dashboard is created from the data and presented to the stakeholders before ending up our day at 6:00 pm.’
Siraj Uddin, Data Analyst at IBM, Hyderabad
‘My day starts at 3 pm as it is USA working hours, for 2-3 hours I prepare daily reports using visualization tools from data gathered. At 6:00 pm we have an internal team meeting of around 20 members 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. Our Actual Work starts at 7:00 pm in either analyzing data for projects or preparing reports and presentations for clients. Our typical day ends at 12 pm but before that we a have small meeting an about 15 minutes just a repo of whatever we have done.’
Deepak Alur, Data Analyst at Cognizant, Bangalore.
The one common thing, at the start of the day, they carefully plan their day before jumping onto execution. They have a pretty structured approach to whatever task that has been assigned to them and always keep a response mechanism to stay up to date. Daily meetings are concluded for producing reports, spotting patterns, collaborating with others, collecting data and setting up infrastructure for clients.
Essential skillsets required and a path to purse this profession
‘To get into analyst you can go in for any courses related to analysis. It should mainly consists of topics like data structures: python, and R programming language, Database: SQL, and visualization tool: power BI, and tableau. Also you should be good in topics like time series, a major topic of statistics, advance statistics, probability, spark pandas, etc. You can do a masters or bachelors course full time from an University or you can find plenty of courses on educational platforms.’
Shreya Naik, Analyst at Niveus Solutions, Mangalore
‘Apart from mastering all the required tools, it is important to understand the entire placement procedure before sitting for it. 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 counterproductive’
Rajat Prasad, Analyst at Tata steel, Jharkhand
The tools that you use at your job, although being important, are secondary in nature. Problem-solving, Planning, Creativity, Data Presentation, quantitative aptitude, and logical reasoning will go a long way in your career. 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, consistent, and hardworking which is crucial for success in any career out there.
These were some of the key points that I wanted to discuss becoming a successful data analyst. Focus on your shortcomings and master those skills, as this is a very competitive field. Develop interesting dashboards using Tableau/Power BI/Excel as well as in data structures and database. Apart From this you should also enhance for soft skills like Story telling: Your dashboard consisting of all the charts and data, each item should convey a message and together you have to weave a problem combined with a solution-based story to the stakeholder. Presentation: “A picture is worth a thousand words” your dashboard should not be a chaos of figures, your presentation must direct the attention of the stakeholder to key focus areas in the data. Communication: this skills is very important as communicating how insightful the results are, and how it can help customers in improving the profits is crucial. You need to look at the problem from different perspectives. Structured thinking is key to this.