Tue, Nov 28, 2023
7 Skills You Need to Become a Data Analyst

What is a Data Analyst?

The process in which the assessment, refining, transforming and modeling data takes place with the goal of making a better decision is called Data analysis. Data analysis has many angles and approaches encircling distinct techniques under a variety of names and is used in different business. Data analysis plays an important role in generating scientific decisions and also increase the efficiency of the organization.

Analysis means to separate any material, similarly in the process of Data Analysis raw data is obtained and then converted into useful information for decision-making by users. Looking at it from a different perspective, data analysis means to simply organize the data which is collected in such a manner that meaningful and helpful information can be derived from it.

The Skills Gap in Companies Today

In today’s world, most companies have surprisingly few people who can analyze their data in the most basic manner, alongside having enough data analysts. This may be blamed partly on the system, companies have in place. Some businesses which grew through acquisition and inherited several IT departments, save their data in systems that are difficult for non-technical employees to access or use. This discourages a majority of people from going anywhere near their company’s raw data, which is why data analysts are in high demand be it in any sector of the business world. So, if you are curious, mathematically skilled, and analytical, then you should consider a career in data analytics.

Types of Data Analysts

  • Sales
  • Marketing
  • Business Intelligence
  • Data assurance
  • Finance

These are some of the most demanding fields which require a data analyst in their management.

To continue your career journey, these additional resources will be helpful:

Skills Required for Data Analyst

If you aim to become a successful data analyst, you must start by ensuring you have a strong background in mathematics, technology, business intelligence, and data mining.

Here is a brief introduction to Data analyst skills:- 

1. Analytical Skills

As the name implies, it is clear that analytical skills are of huge importance in data analysis. These skills include gathering, viewing, sorting, and analyzing all kinds of raw data in details. Analytical skills are one of the most important skills for being a data analyst as it helps you to view a challenge or situation from different perspectives. Hence if you want to be a professional data analyst then you need to expatiate your analytical skills and thinking.

2. Mathematical Skills

Mathematical skills are also important for making a career in data analysis, as you have to play with numbers and figures throughout the day. Essential mathematical skills include:

  • Having a good knowledge of figures and numbers
  • Having the ability to organize information
  • One should know how to schedule and budget
  • Interpretation of mathematical information is a must
  • One should be good at calculations
  • Measuring and analyzing data

3. Technical Skills

Good computer and Technical skills related to Data analytics are essential. Basic knowledge of statistics is quite helpful as well as a scripting language like Python or Mat lab and a statistical language like R and SAS are very useful to know as a data analyst. The more languages you know the better it will be for you to acquire your dream job.

4. Attention to Details

Data analyst is all about the details, it allows a data analyst to find and see for any initial unseen error and links, which is especially important at the point of solving problems and making decisions.

5. Business Skills

Apart from the technical skills, there are some business skills which one should possess to function as a Data analyst. Some of which are:

  • Decision-making & Problem-solving: These skills are the bottom line of data analysis, moreover the main foundation of data analysis as the job of a data analyst is to give the right information for decision-making and problem-solving process. Which is why it appears to be a perfect skill required to be a data analyst.
  • Communication Skills: As a data analyst you are expected to work with different people in your team which makes your communication a really important part of your job. To work well together as a team for the benefit of your organization is also one of your main responsibilities and skill. You should be able to communicate effectively with the teammates to prepare, present and explain data.
  • Time Management and Organizational Skills: As it is expected of you to work with different people in your team. You should be capable enough to manage your time including your responsibilities, as well as meet your deadlines.

6. Communication Skills:

Being a Data analyst requires you to be an excellent communicator. Basically one needs to facilitate meetings, make the right requests and be an active listener to gather new data. Your fluency in communications should remain flawless through different digital platforms.

According to some experts, there are 7 basic data analyst skills required, which are:

  • Adobe Management: To be a professional data analyst, you need to get a good hold of this software. This will allow you to manage your data as well as monitor your cross-channel campaigns from a particular place. 
  • Analytical Mind: As a professional Data analyst, you will need to portray yourself as an analytical mind also creative whenever needed. Showcase your creativity wherever you are and create campaigns of your own to inhabit confidence in the field.
  • Advanced Microsoft Excel: Excel has always been the core of Data analysis and it is advisable that you have a good grasp on it. Make sure you know how to make your way through the different functions and uses available on Excel to be a successful Data analyst.
  • Teamwork: It is one of those qualities which plays an important role for the benefit and progress of any industry, which is why even the data analytics industry prefers candidates who have worked as a team over those who have not. No matter how good you are at working alone, you still need a team to execute certain projects.
  • Statistical Language: Statistical languages like Python, Matlab, R, and SAS are really important for your success in this field. The more of these languages you know the easier it gets for you to get your dream job.
  • Adobe and Google Analytics: It can be said that the future of data analytics is collaborated with these two magic tools, so an advanced understanding of these tools will definitely increase your chances of being successful in this field.
  • SQL and Programming: SQL is a very important programming language when it comes to data analytics, as it is considered to be one of the most valued skills within the analytic world. However only a few people have such capability, so you can try to develop skills in this area to be ahead from your competitors.

Once you have acquired the above-mentioned skills, you can use them to attract attention to yourself in your job search. This is an epitome for data analyst skills checklist.

Academic Background

A bachelor degree is often required, not all the time though. To work as a data analyst you need to have a degree in any of these Sciences

  • Computer Science
  • Information management
  • Business information systems
  • Mathematics
  • Economics
  • Statistics

As much as the above degrees are important for your success, what matters the most are the skills which you possess.

Career Prospects

Data analysis is rapidly growing field and skilled data analysts are high in demand throughout the country, in every industry. This means that you would find many opportunities only if you are outstanding and exhibit excellent data analytic skills.


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