What Is a Data Analyst?

Data analysts help companies sort, analyze and utilize customer information. While the term “data analyst” is somewhat broad, it can be split up into three separate fields: technologists, who function as coders and writers of algorithms, and statisticians and creatives, who consume content in order to find the most important and telling results. Using these professionals, organizations are better able to market and sell their products and services.

Responsibilities of Data Analysts

Although the specific duties of data analysts may differ based on the size and type of employer, most share a few major responsibilities. These include:

  • Monitor data trends
  • Measure effectiveness of company strategies
  • Create and evaluate effective methods of collecting data, such as surveys, questionnaires and opinion polls
  • Gather data on consumers, competitors, and market conditions
  • Convert complex data into understandable reports, tables and graphs
  • Prepare and report results for clients and management.

Some data analysts may work in certain specialties such as operations analysts, marketing analysts and financial analysts.

The main skill a data analyst needs is the ability to comprehend facts, figures and numbers. Because an analyst takes these numbers and condenses them into a format used for decision-making, they must possess excellent communication skills as well. Data analysts work throughout the economy, with most being employed in the management, scientific and technical consulting sectors.

Data Analyst Salary

Data analytics is a lucrative and growing field. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the profession is projected to grow 27 percent by 2026, a rate much faster than average. Because of an increased use of data, all industries are expected to increase their use of these professionals.The median annual wage for data analysts is $81,390, with those working in the top 10 percent of the field earning upwards of $134,470.

Want to pursue a career as a Data Analyst?

Southeastern University’s online business programs can prepare you with the skills you need to pursue a career in data analysis

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Education Requirements

For entry-level positions, most employers look for data analysts with at least a bachelor’s degree. Business administration is a common major for these positions, as is information systems. Students can expect to take courses in accounting, management, data mining, organizational behavior and other relevant subjects. Because technology plays such a huge role in their jobs, data analysts may need to take computer science courses as well.

Becoming a Data Analyst

At Southeastern University, our online business degrees are tailored to students who are enterprising, goal-oriented and tech-savvy. Delivered in a completely online format, our programs prepares individuals with the knowledge they need to succeed in this growing field. Individuals will study both fundamental and advanced concepts in areas like data analysis, accounting, strategy and finance. SEU also offers a unique Christ-centered curriculum that prepare students to apply ethical principles to their careers.