Top 15 Data Analyst Skills to be best on the Job

By | November 18, 2016
Data analyst skills and qualities

To be effective on the job, Data Analysts need to have great analytical skills.

Top 15 Data Analyst Skills to be best on the Job

Data analysts need certain skills and qualities to be best on their job. This post shows the area you need to improve on to be a good data analyst and command respect from both colleagues and employer.

But first let’s see a summary of what a data analyst do:

Data Analyst Duties and Responsibilities

Data analysis is a process of gathering and analyzing data needed for developing a company’s marketing, political, insurance or/and business deals.

The duties of a data analyst include the following: analyzing data, translating numbers into plain English, and using data to take company decisions.

Data analysts work in different environments, helping companies to use data to solve problems and answer questions.

Now, here are 15 top skills and qualities you need to develop to be the best data analyst around:

1. Data Quality Technology Skills: Data analysts should know their way around different modern data quality software and understand the importance of data quality rules and measures. These measures are often called “dimensions” in some organizations because they quantify matters against the various characteristics that are required of the data of those companies.

2. Data Visualization: There can be need to multivariate data and explore your data in a tool such as Olikview and Tableau, for you to know the shape of your data and get revelation of hidden details of the procedure. Visualization tools are necessary for those who aspire to become data artists in future.

3. Machine Learning and Data Mining: To collect data also means to mine data, but in the present data world, machine learning has been preeminent. The machine learning technology can be used to develop analytic apps needed for making much profits in the job market.

4. Statistical and Quantitative Analysis: You can be halfway into the data world with a background in quantitative analysis and a degree in mathematics or statistics. An expertise with statistical tools such as SPSS, SAS, Stata, or R is a big advantage – as companies are in need of those with quantitative backgrounds.

5. Business Acumen: It is important for data analysts to have good understanding of the industry they work in, and also knowledge of problems associated with business that the organization is making efforts to solve. Possession of strong business acumen is what helps data analysts to perceive which problems are to solve before finding out some new ways that the business can leverage its data.

6. Communication Skills: Data analysts often communicate their technical findings to a non-technical team like the sales or marketing department. With effective communication skills, they can use reports and presentations to explain complicated technical ideas and methods in a layman’s language, and be able to translate data into an understandable document.

7. Understanding: To be a good data analyst, you need to spend enough time observing the different facets of data in order to understand the complex dataset. It will take some time to build up the skills needed for this, though some data analysts tend to underestimate the amount of time that this requires.

8. Computer Skills: Data analysts need knowledge and skills about various types of databases such as MySQL, a Statistical Language (SAS, R, and SPSS), a Spreadsheet (Excel), Querying Language (SQL, Hive and Pig), a Scripting Language (Matlab and Python), and database design.

9. Good Analytical Skills: Analytical skills are the ability to collect, gather, visualize and analyze information in detail. Analysts with this skill set should also be able to see a problem from various point of view, and it allows them to solve complex problems by making effective decisions. This should enable data analysts to see through large amounts of data such as facts, numbers, and figure crunching, and analyze it well to achieve the best result.

10. Attention to Details: Data analysts have to pay much attention to details when they are making analysis for them to be able to arrive at reasonable conclusions. This skill will enable them to find and see hidden details and essentials when it comes to making the right decision, and solving problems.

11. Analytic Problem-Solving Skills: Data analysts are capable of solving complex problems when they are able to pay attention to details of the data they analyze. The amount of time they spend to solve problems is very important so they don’t have to rush up things in order to get solution.

12. Time Management Skills: With good time management skills, data analysts are able to meet deadlines. Managing time also involves collecting, gathering, and analyzing data at the most appropriate time. Data analysts should not neglect this skill as it enables them to work according to order of importance.

13. Numerical Skills: This involves understanding of basic mathematical skills which include knowledge of numbers and figures, understanding relationships between numbers, interpreting mathematical information, ability to organize information, argumentation and logical thinking, visual perception of information with diagrams, charts, tables, calculation skills, working with graphical information, scheduling or budgeting, understanding of trends, and measurement, and data analysis.

14. Optimizer: Not all data analysts are optimists, but the optimization aspect of their job should have some positive effect on them. It is a fact that employers look for data analysts with optimistic mind, so data analysts must look for ways to make improvements based on ideas gotten from the data.

15. Decision Making: Data analysts are to decide between options for what action to take; they are to decide on further information to be gathered before taking action, and they also make decision on resources to be allocated to this problem. Those resources include: staff, funding, and time.

Conclusion:

If you are a data analyst who wants to improve on yourself and be best on your job, you should make effort to acquire the above skills and qualities.

The above qualities are also useful to employers looking to hire good data analysts. Applicants with the above qualities should be given attention and consideration for the job.

Did you enjoy this post and have noted some skills to improve yourself on? Please leave a comment in the box below. If you have other skills you consider important to the success of a data analyst, you can also share them.