Data analysis is a rapidly expanding field of work. Data analysts look at information collected by businesses, like delivery companies and many others, then interpret numbers and trends to improve the business. As a recent graduate with a STEM degree, data analysis may be the perfect job for you. Here’s what you need to know to break into the industry and become a data analyst that experiences years of success in the field.
Pick A Field
The job of a data analyst is not a singular defined position. There are multiple areas and positions that are classified as data analysis. Before beginning your job hunt, you should consider what kind of data analyst you want to be. Consider not only your skills, but your personal interests as well. Data analysis as a career offers a distinct level of freedom because every business is looking to make more money. This allows you to find positions in areas related to your personal interests and favored industries. You will go stir crazy if you are forced to work day in and day out on something that bores you. Picking a specialty also makes you more valuable as an employee. Some technical areas you should consider are cloud computing, database architecture, and engineering.
Brush Up On Your Skills
There are some basic skills you will need to work as a data analyst. You may have already learned some these skills while earning your degree. Being able to demonstrate these skills will improve your chances of getting a job in data analysis. On the most basic level, you should have a grasp on mathematics from algebra to statistics and calculus. Knowledge of application on formulas is a handy ability, depending on your field of interest chemistry and physics are optional. Because your job will be to improve business, you should learn about finance, specifically economics and accounting.
Learn More Languages
Having knowledge of programming languages is important to being a data analyst. You can use your programming skills to help you break down the information you are given. Although knowing multiple languages is a huge boon, you should consider what area of analysis you will be working in and pick accordingly. You should at least know how to program in either Python, Java, or C. Other programming languages such as SQL, Julia, Matlab, SAS, and R are used in specialized fields such as AI, commercial analytics, and pattern recognition, or in those industries that utilize Vblocks. Do your research in your field of interest and learn the language best suited for it. This will provide you with a significant advantage over other potential hires.
Experience in the field is usually the biggest deciding factor in the hiring process. But the zen riddle of the 20th century is as follows: I need experience to get a job, but to get experience I need a job. If you have difficulty finding a position, you need to make your own experience. You can do this by freelancing and working on a self project. There are several sites online where businesses will hire freelance data analysts. Take on several projects over time and maintain a portfolio of work to show future employers. With a solid portfolio, the offers will flow your way. If you’re lucky, you may even receive an offer from the companies you freelance for. The other way you can create experience is to start a project of your own. Look for common problems in data analysis and see how you can address these problems. These types of projects show that even though you lack professional experience, you have the skills and motivation to be a good hire.
Writing And Communications
Your ability to write and communicate is paramount in the data analysis field. You may be thinking, “But I became a programmer/businessman/economist because I dislike writing essays.” Your coding and analysis skills can be top notch, but they won’t mean much to businesses if you can’t explain your findings in a way they can understand. This means that once you’ve developed your skill set and experience, you need to market yourself. Promote your ability and learn how to discuss in a way that interests employers. Learn to write a killer cover letter as well as killer code. Great communication skills separate the great data analysts from the good ones.
Becoming a data analyst can take a lot of work, especially if you are unfamiliar with Vbrick systems. Ultimately, the effort is well spent. The data analysis field pays very well and is always expanding. So don’t be afraid to learn, research, and grow your experience. Even though you may not feel like it, you have a lot to offer these businesses. With maximum effort and interest, you can become a data analyst.