Data analysts are professionals who are well-equipped in converting data available in the form of sales figures, market research, and logistics into insights that can drive better business decisions. A data analyst’s job is anything but easy, to be truly successful in this field, you’ll need to have a clear understanding of the integral skills required for a data analyst.
The top skills required for a data analyst can be summarized as follows:
- Excellent analytical skills to see through data as well as for number crunching.
- Data visualization skills to represent their findings with clarity to the other stakeholders. Data analysts should know how to present their findings into an understandable document.
- Critical thinking skills to objectively observe numbers, patterns and data to arrive at new conclusions.
- Mathematical and statistical skills to know basic maths and statistics to estimate numerical data.
- Clear communication skills to express even the most complex ideas clearly so that better strategies can be framed.
- Knowledge about programming languages like Python, Oracle and SQL.
- Soft skills like team-playing abilities, an eye for detail etc.
Now, let’s explore the different categories of data analyst skills.
Different Categories Of Skills Required For A Data Analyst
As a data analyst, you would have to use a wide variety of skills as a part of your routine work projects. You would have to be well-versed with all kinds of tools to be considered a skilled data analyst. The different types of skills required for a data analyst are as follows:
These include the set of skills that will aid you in the initial steps of data collection, sorting, analysis and interpretation. These are:
- Ability to work with spreadsheet tools (like Excel) that help in arranging and presenting data in an easy to understand manner. This tool is omnipresent in any organization that handles data.
- SQL skills play an integral role in querying data. Data analysts must have strong SQL skills as these will be employed in their daily projects.
- Ability to use data visualization tools (like Tableau) to help build dashboards so that company performance can be tracked. These help a data analyst needs to showcase his findings to the organization so that better strategies can be made.
- Python programming language is one of the mandatory languages every data analyst should know due to its versatility. Some of the important python libraries include NUMPY, PANDAS, MATPLOTLIB, SCIPY and SCIKIT-LEARN.
Any data aspirant should be aware of how to work with statistical tests, distributions, maximum likelihood estimators, etc. Statistical concepts are indispensable in getting unstructured raw data broken down to simple and organized information. Descriptive and inferential statistics, test for significance, hypothesis testing, and regression should be at the fingertips of any expert data analyst.
You should be comfortable with the basic level of mathematics This includes your ability to convert data into mathematical expressions or even derive graphical representations from information.
Data Wrangling Skills
Data wrangling is an underestimated part of the manual data collection process. In fact, industry experts claim that data scientists spend about 80% of their time at work in this process. Python and relational databases like Oracle, SQL Server, PostgreSQL, or mySQL are used for data wrangling.
Effective Data Visualization And Communication Skills
As a data analyst, you would be expected to both interpret data and communicate it to the stakeholders in the organizations you work for. You should have equal command over data visualization tools like Tableau, ggplot, and matplotlib as well as the ability to explain the interpretations from the data.
Now that you are aware of the skills required for a data analyst, here is an additional skill you need to develop to ace at your job. It’s a data analyst’s intuition. With experience, you would develop the foresight and critical thinking to anticipate what method or tool to use in your work projects. The first step of becoming a data analyst begins with registering with a Data Analytics certification course.
In fact, Acadgild’s Data Analytics courses will train you to become a data analyst in 4 months and that too while you gain hands-on experience from doing several projects. This exposure will help you greatly in seeking the best opportunities in the field. Seize the opportunity and ride the data analytics wave!