WHAT DO DATA ANALYSTS DO?
Data analysts translate numbers into plain English Every business collects data, whether it's sales figures, market research, logistics, or transportation costs. A data analyst's job is to take that data and use it to help companies make better business decisions. This could mean figuring out how to price new materials for the market, how to reduce transportation costs, solve issues that cost the company money, or determine how many people should be working on Saturdays.
There are many different types of data analysts in the field, including operations analysts, marketing analysts, financial analysts, etc.
HOW MUCH DO DATA ANALYSTS MAKE?
This depends on experience and what type of data analyst you are. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) financial analysts made a median hourly rate of $35.75, or $74,350 annually in 2010. Market research analysts made $29.12 an hour, or $60,570 annually, and operations research analysts made $34.12 per hour, or $$70,960 annually.
WHAT ARE THE EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS?
A bachelor's degree is needed for most entry-level jobs, and a master's degree will be needed for many upper-level jobs. Most analysts will have degrees in fields like math, statistics, computer science, or something closely related to their field. Strong math and analysis skills are needed.
Depending on the field you go into, certification is available.
JOB SKILLS AND REQUIREMENTS
- Analytical Skills: Data analysts work with large amounts of data: facts, figures, and number crunching. You will need to see through the data and analyze it to find conclusions.
- Communication Skills: Data analysts are often called to present their findings, or translate the data into an understandable document. You will need to write and speak clearly, easily communicating complex ideas.
- Critical Thinking: Data analysts must look at the numbers, trends, and data and come to new conclusions based on the findings.
- Attention to Detail: Data is precise. Data analysts have to make sure they are vigilant in their analysis to come to correct conclusions.
- Math Skills: Data analysts need math skills to estimate numerical data.