Fast changing technology has great impact on how businesses operate. Great amounts of data are produced every day by sending emails, text messages, YouTube videos we watch and produce, etc. Therefore, nearly 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are generated daily across the world. This has huge influence on businesses, both large and small, which have to deal with massive data volumes. A lot depends on their ability to gain meaningful insights from them. Furthermore, data analysis, skills, and knowledge, along with customized solutions, are having a significant impact on how you use technology to run your business. A data analyst should focus on exactly those topics.
What is analytics?
Analytics is the area, where theory and practice are brought together to identify and communicate data-driven insights. It is a process of discovering, interpreting, and communicating significant patterns in data. Those patterns allow managers, stakeholders, and other executives in an organization to make more informed decisions.
Data analysis process
- Identify – what is the business question you’d like to answer. Is there a problem your company needs to solve or has an idea that needs to be verified? What do you need to measure, and how will you measure it?
- Collect the raw data sets you’ll need to help you solve the identified problem or answer the identified question. Collecting data can happen through internal sources, like a company’s client relationship management (CRM) software, or from secondary sources, like social media profiles or government sources.
- Clean the data so that it is ready for analysis. This step consists of cleaning up duplicates and anomalous data, standardizing data structure and format, dealing with insufficient data and other syntax errors.
- Analyze the data by using various data analysis techniques and visualisation tools. This way you can begin to find patterns, trends, dependencies, variations and outliers. At this step, you can decide on using data mining to discover patterns within databases or some data visualisation tools to help you spot insights in an easy-to-understand graphical format.
- Interpret the results of your analysis. Has the data given you any answers, did it help you understand your business or idea better? What are the key takeaways from the results? Are there any limitations to your conclusions?
Types of data analysis?
There are four types of data analytics connected to each other to bring increasing value to an organization.
- Descriptive analytics answers the question of what happened in the past: revenues, sales, website traffic, and so on. This information will help you find the trend он тхе спот.
- Diagnostic analytics finds the reason why something happened in the first place by comparing historical (descriptive) data sets to identify patterns and dependencies. This way, an oraganisaiton can better understand positive and negative outcomes.
- Predictive analytics can determine future trends by spotting dependencies based on descriptive and diagnostic analysis. Thus the organisaton can be more proactive when it comes to business decisions and strategy.
- Prescriptive analytics helps the organisation decide which way to go, how to handle. This analysis is of great value to the business strategy and solving potential problems. It often requires the use of complex algorithms and advanced technology such as machine learning.
What does a Data Analysts do?
The answer to that question varies a lot based on the type and size of your organisation, as well as the current state of adoption of data-driven decision-making practices. Generally speaking, though, key responsibilities of a data analyst can typically include:
- Design and maintenance of databases and systems, including fixing coding errors and other data-related problems.
- Manage and mine data from primary and secondary sources, followed by reorganization of the data in a format that can be easily read by either human or machine.
- Use of software statistical tools for data set interpretation, observation of trends and patterns, valuable for diagnostic and predictive analytics efforts.
- Prepare reports and visualisation for executives that can successfully communicate trends, patterns, and predictions using relevant data.
- Collaborate with different stakeholders on technical level like programmers, engineers, and organizational leaders; together identify opportunities for system modifications, recommend process improvements, and develop policies for data governance.
- Demonstrate the significance of their work in the context of local, national, and global trends that impact both their organization and industry.
- Create extensive documentation that can allow 3rd parties stakeholders to understand the steps of the data analysis for further reusage.
Types of Data Analysts
Data is used by business analysts to gain insights and drive improvements in businesses and other organisations. Business analysts can uncover problems in almost any area of a business, including IT processes, organisational structures and employee development. As companies constantly strive to improve their overall efficiency and reduce costs, business analytics is gradually becoming an essential part of their operations.
Business Intelligence Analyst
A BI analyst analyses data to help organisations make informed business decisions. Data such as revenues, sales, market trends, customer behaviour, are part of what a BI is looking at and collecting. BI Analysts may also need to create tools and data models to visualise or monitor the data.
Medical and Health Care Analyst
A medical and health care analyst will concentrate on the business side of medicine, increasing medical care and simplifying access to patient treatments. They use healthcare data sources to improve healthcare outcomes.
Market Research Analyst
If your company needs information on customer behavior or competitor data, a market research analyst is the person you need. By investigating market circumstances, market research analysts can assess future sales of a product or service. They assist businesses in determining what items customers desire, who will buy them, and at what price.
Operations Research Analyst
Solving an issue or implementing sophisticated approaches toward an improved business strategy is the key responsibility of an operations research analysts. This is done by using data mining, statistical analysis and mathematical modelling to provide solutions that help businesses and organisations operate more efficiently and cost-effectively.
Intelligence analysts review information and data to identify and mitigate security concerns. Internal and external statistics, databases and field reports are examples of information sources. Synthesising information and creation of action plans, requires good research, comprehension and analytical skills from an intelligence analyst.
Embracing business analytics
Analytics permeate every aspect of our lives. Whatever your question – whether it’s about employees or finances, or what customers like or dislike and how it affects their behavior – analytics will give you answers and help you make informed decisions.