Data has been baked into nearly every industry, as companies continue to place big bets on data initiatives. But here’s the paradox: one in five companies are failing to maximize the opportunities that data presents.
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A report from commercial data and analytics firm Dun and Bradstreet says that companies that belong to the 20 percent struggle with several factors, including the lack of the right talent to effectively manage and analyze data.
Meanwhile, companies that have successfully grasped data and analytics are racing ahead. These include household names like Netflix from the entertainment industry, Nike and Amazon from the retail industry, and CVS Health from the healthcare industry.
Data analysis is having its moment as it becomes a standard across industries. The challenge now lies in finding the right people to realize the gains that data offers.
Why Learn Data Analysis?
The short answer: analytics works. Any person’s actions, while represented only in numbers, tell a story. And it is the job of data analysts to poke that story from all angles and capture value out of it.
For healthcare data analysts, that value is reflected in how they can boost the quality of care and improve patient experience. For business analysts, the value may lie in how best to acquire and retain customers as well as how to manage risks. It is for this reason that data analysts are highly sought after today.
The World Economic Forum predicts that by 2022, 85 percent of employers will have adopted big data analytics. This, in turn, is expected to trigger an even higher demand for data analysts and data scientists.
“Companies need more skilled people to be able to interrogate data and translate that data story to business,” said Dr. Michelle Hoogenhout, an instructor for Denver-based coding bootcamp Galvanize. That said, it might take a while for companies to fill the empty ranks for data professionals.
“With businesses across industries scrambling to acquire AI talent and to increase their own data-driven decision-making, demand for data analytics professionals will likely outstrip the available talent for some time,” a recent Deloitte study said.
Hoping to turn the tide is Galvanize.
This year, Galvanize is rolling out its newest addition to its Immersive courses: the Data Analytics Online Immersive. Lasting 10 weeks (with a one-week break) and delivered entirely online, the training program is designed to target the skills that budding data analysts need to enter the field.
“We’ve had a lot of success with our Data Science Immersive course,” said Michelle. “And with data analytics’ increased focus on data storytelling, interpretable results, and business sense—which is subtly different from data science—we felt that it warranted its own course.”
With the first cohort set to begin classes in September, the school is hoping to carve yet another path to a tech career.
Galvanize Data Analytics Online Immersive Course: What Can You Expect?
The Galvanize Data Analytics Online Immersive program is the coding bootcamp’s latest effort to bring one of today’s hottest job titles closer to anyone looking to enter the vast world of data. This is in addition to the Galvanize Data Science Immersive, which is both a full-time (12 weeks, with one week break) and part-time remote course (30 weeks).
Unlike the latter, however, which requires some previous programming and math experience, the Data Analytics Course has a lighter focus on technical requirements. “We want to open the door to more people who want to transition into a new career and who may not have previously done any coding,” said Michelle.
“People don’t have to come in with any particular skills because they can do a pre-course beforehand.” The pre-course will cover basic Python skills, Excel frames, and software installation, all of which will come in handy during the immersive training.
While the Data Analytics Immersive course has a relatively lower barrier to entry, the quality of content and instruction is equally competitive as other Galvanize Full-Time Immersive courses.
Galvanize Data Analytics Online Immersive Curriculum Overview
Indeed, the making of the Galvanize Data Analytics curriculum was not taken lightly. Practicing what it preaches, Galvanize leveraged relevant data to build a curriculum that meets current industry needs.
“Our team conducted over 50 interviews with data analysts and data analytics hiring managers to learn what was going on behind the scenes of [over] 100,000 job descriptions analyzed,” said Jess Kryzenske, Galvanize’s Director of Operations for Data Science and Analytics Education.
“We tapped into companies large and small, government agencies, and startups, some of which include Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Disney, Nordstrom, Charles Schwab, DaVita, AdAction, Empiric Health, and Optimizely.”
The result is a curriculum that zeroes in on the tools and techniques that students will need to navigate the entire data analysis project life cycle.
In particular, the course is divided into three modules, the first of which opens with an introduction to data analytics and its relevance in the business environment. Students will also learn how to use Excel to process, clean, and organize data. This ends with discussions on dashboards, SQL, and Tableau, with a focus on creating compelling data visualizations and data storytelling.
The second module goes deep into Python programming and data exploration as well as basic statistics.
“Many programs focus mainly on SQL and visualization aspects, but we feel it’s important for candidates to also have a strong introduction to Python,” said Michelle. “It makes you a much more flexible analyst, opens up more career opportunities, and equips you better to work with big data.”
Finally, the last module will focus on inferential statistics and interpretable models such as regression.
Because the curriculum promises a deep dive into data analytics, it can seem overwhelming to students who will be coming into the program without prior relevant experience or background. To evade this risk, Galvanize doubled down on classroom engagement and practical training.
Galvanize Data Analytics Online Immersive: The Classroom Experience
“We aim to create an interactive, fun, and fast-paced learning environment based on good learning practices,” said Michelle. These practices, she said, can be summarized into five key points.
- Start from the basics.
- Incorporate lots of repetition.
- Incorporate lots of opportunities to practice with peers.
- Incorporate lots of low-stakes assessments; and
- Revise and build on different technologies.
So, how does all this unfold in the classroom?
A typical day of the Galvanize Data Analytics Immersive will see students learning by doing and practicing instead of sitting through long lectures. After a brief introduction to the topic, students will work through interactive assignments that are guided by short context-setting lectures and written materials.
Students can then expect an interactive debrief and discussion around the materials. They’ll learn not only from their classmates but also from the members of the Data Science and Data Analytics instructional team, all of whom carry industry experience.
This cycle of introduction, practice, and interactive discussion will take place several times a day, thus giving students the opportunity to hone their skills across multiple disciplines. Throughout the program, students will complete various tasks that may either require individual or group effort.
“There will be several checkpoints and challenges given to the students…However, these [will] not contribute to the student’s grade and will be used to understand student progress,” said Jess.
“There will also be weekly group case studies to give students experience in working on a technical team,” added Michelle. These assessments repeat week in and week out as students progress through the program.
Once the students have a solid grasp of the data analytics theories, tools, and techniques, they will be expected to deliver three capstone projects. Each of these will involve solving a real-world problem through the analysis of real-world data sets. Put together, the portfolio of projects will serve as the students’ proof of their capabilities as professional data analysts.
The hard emphasis on repetitive practical training hinges on the coding bootcamp’s firm belief that instruction in the absence of application is insufficient. “We don’t believe anyone learns long-term if they are introduced to a new tool for only one day and then never use it again,” Michelle added.
By the end of the program, students will have completed eight assessments, eight case studies, three capstone projects, and daily lectures, all of which sum up to 350 hours of rigorous training.
So, What Can You Do with a Galvanize Data Analytics Certificate?
Because data analysis is applied in earnest in multiple industries, you don’t need to look far to find a job opportunity. Graduating Galvanize Data Analytics students, said Michelle, “will be well-suited for a junior/associate data analyst, business analyst, business intelligence analyst, and product analyst role.”
Even better, Galvanize makes the job search process easier with its built-in career services. These include a week-long job interview preparation, through which students pick up tips and tricks to ace technical and behavioral interviews.
The school will also offer multiple opportunities for students to gather firsthand insights through “frequent visits from industry professionals to help them explore the world of data analytics.”
Students will also learn skills that will be crucial to their success long after they graduate from the Data Analytics Immersive. These include effective networking skills, building resumes and cover letters that get them noticed, and learning how to promote and set themselves apart in the job marketplace.
Join a Winning Team
Data analytics is fundamentally changing every aspect of how organizations make sense of and respond to human behavior. Formerly conceived as a job for the geeks, data analysis has become one of today’s most chic roles. And Galvanize is offering a winning formula to get you through the analytics doors.
Want to join a winning team? Take your shot and build your data analytics career with Galvanize.
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