Data analyst skills require focus and dedication. Data analysts measure the performance of a business based on data collected. For example, a data analyst will review the number of interactions, shares, and impressions of a new marketing campaign to see if it has been successful.
If you are considering a career as a data analyst, check out the data analyst skills you will need below.
What Is a Data Analyst and What Do They Do?
A data analyst interprets data by looking at trends and patterns to turn the data into information that can be used to improve a business. Their day-to-day duties include:
- Interpreting data from small or large datasets
- Identifying data patterns
- Working with management to figure out ways to improve business
- Obtaining data from sources where it is being collected
- Developing databases and data reports
- Implementing strategies to increase efficiency
Soft Skills for Data Analysts
Though data analysis may seem like a field requiring many technical skills, there are still some soft skills that will help you excel, including the following.
After data analysts interpret data, they must report their findings to someone. You must have great communication skills to present data to your co-workers and management so that everyone is on the same page. Verbal and written communication skills are essential.
If an issue arises within a data set, analysts must fix the issue. You must have great problem-solving skills to fix the issue quickly so there are no setbacks.
Attention to Detail
While working with data or lines of code, analysts must have strong attention to detail. The smallest detail can throw off the entire workflow. So, data analysts must pay attention to detail in every project.
Research is a large part of being a data analyst. The information an analyst needs is not always available, so they may need to research to see how new trends are affecting business.
Technical Skills for Data Analysts
On top of soft skills, a data analyst’s skill set should include other technical skills that demonstrate experience with software. Below are some technical skills that a data analyst job may require of you.
- Programming languages such as Python, SQL, and R
- Data mining
- Data warehousing
- Microsoft Excel
- Knowledge of data visualization tools
- Google Analytics
- Knowledge of artificial intelligence for analytics
- Machine learning
- Data modeling
- Extraction, transformation, and loading
Data Analysis Courses
Taking a course can help you learn the data analyst skills you will need for your future career. Outside of getting a four-year college degree or attending a bootcamp, you might consider taking one of these courses to build your data analysis skills:
This course will teach many analytics tools such as Excel, Tableau, and MySQL.
This course will teach you the basics of the R programming language used by data analysts.
In this course, you will learn the principles of data analysis and gain hands-on experience.
The Difference Between a Data Analyst and a Data Scientist
While these roles may seem similar, there are a few differences between them. A data analyst interprets data and identifies trends to help advise business decisions. A data scientist uses past data to try to predict future patterns and trends, providing insight to a company.
Data Analyst Jobs
As a data analyst, there are roles available to you in a wide range of fields. According to Salary.com, the average annual income for a data analyst in the US is $76,371.
Below are some data analyst jobs you might aspire to.
- Business analyst
- Financial analyst
- Social media data analyst
- Market research analyst
- Big data analyst
- Operations data analyst
Skills to Add to Your Resume as a Data Analyst
If you are searching for a data analyst job, you will need to set up your resume to showcase your relevant technical and soft skills. Below are some skills that you should list on your data analyst resume.
- Coding languages such as R, SQL, and Python
- Database design
- Microsoft Excel
- Knowledge of mathematics involved in data analysis
- Attention to detail
- Data analysis research methods
The more experience a person gains working in different jobs, the more marketable they become. With the right skills and experience, potential employers will be able to tell that you are the most qualified candidate.
Conclusion: Do You Have the Skills to Become a Data Analyst?
As mentioned, many skills go into data analysis. These skills are vital to becoming a data analyst and understanding data science. If you learn the necessary skills, you will excel in your career and will be given many opportunities.
Data Analyst Skills FAQ
What is the difference between a data analyst and a data scientist?
Data analysts analyze, interpret, and identify trends in data to help make business decisions. Data scientists use past data to help predict future outcomes.
What soft skills are important to have?
Essential soft skills of a data analyst include communication, attention to detail, teamwork, and problem-solving.
What technical skills are important?
Important technical skills for a data analyst include Microsoft Excel and programming languages such as SQL and R and data warehousing.
How much does a data analyst make?
Data analysts make an average of $76,371 per year in the US.