“Data are just summaries of thousands of stories - tell a few of those stories and it helps make the data meaningful.” - Chip & Dan Heath, Authors of Made to Stick, Switch
An avid blog reader might wonder how published surveys and insights involve collected data from “millions of subscribers/visitors/users” or “numerous happy clients.” Same goes for the different graphs and visualizations showcasing numbers and information. Overheard comments go like this:
The latest Stack Overflow survey, is one such example. The website beautifully represents the number of people who never received a degree in computer science or how “women who code are nearly twice as likely to have less than 2 years of programming experience.” Moreover, coming up with a defined number for each of these aspects, post analyzing a large number of subjects and knowledge areas must be a daunting task.
So, What is Analytics?
Analytics is all about creating value out of data. It provides you with meaningful information from websites, as shown above. It is a science, involving discovery and communication of meaningful patterns in data. The results of data analytics cannot be inferred easily. Certainly not by simply querying a database, or assuming values from a data set. This information is gained by gathering data (sometimes unrelated) and 'mining' them. The resultant information can then be communicated to the real world through varied visualizations.
Interpreting this big data, working on statistical data analysis and data-driven decisions makes it a challenge in itself. While the above stands true for a commercial crowd, business analysis deals with a more sophisticated crowd or data. This expands the scope of responsibility considerably, to the extent of deciding the entire organization's business potential.
The Future of Analytics Companies
Companies are looking for new and better ways to transform their businesses using data and analytics. The analytics future looks incredibly exciting with the advent of smarter devices and better data governance. WNS, that recently acquired Value Edge (Research services company, consulting grade marketing and data analytics provider to leading global biopharma companies) feel that the WNS' global size and strength will allow tapping into new demand areas, drive deeper relationships and expand offerings, clearly indicating growing data analytic trends.
Companies need to invest in smarter analysts to be an in-demand organization that uses modern tools to analyze data. Finding important insights will help make a difference. Opportunities are constantly expanding with technological progress; an opportunity that demands the attention of better business analysts.
Why choose a career in Analytics?
The analytics industry offers innumerable opportunities. Demand to extract vital information from the expanding digital world has seen a phenomenal increase. People constantly need smarter solutions to dynamic business problems. A business analyst with proper certification and firm knowledge base can handle such problems.
Shortage of experts makes business analyst jobs an attractive career choice. Andy Bristow, Information Technology Manager at Hays, a recruitment firm, addresses the shortage of business analysts in the market. He believes the introduction of apprenticeships and internships will help plug future skill demands. “The rate of youth unemployment continues to soar, but employers are still complaining about the lack of talent in the market.
It is crucial for organizations to communicate the skills they need at present and in the future, but also really sell themselves as an employer of choice to secure their talent bench in years to come,” said Bristow. A Business Analyst (BA) with a valid business analytics degree can work to gain insights that help you take better business decisions, to be used to automate and optimize business processes.
Key responsibilities of a certified BA:
- Exploring data to find new patterns and relationships (data mining)
- Explaining why a certain result occurred (statistical analysis, quantitative analysis)
- Experimenting to test previous decisions (A/B testing, multivariate testing)
- Forecasting future results (predictive modeling, predictive analytics)
Preparing for Business Analysis
The job market is filled with various certification and masters courses for IT employees - like Masters in Business Intelligence, MBA in Business Analytics, etc.
For those bent on making a lifetime career in business analytics, prominent certifications include Certification of Competency in Business Analysis (CCBA) and Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) from the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA). If you are looking for a Business Analyst certification, these are the two sought after certifications by employers looking to appoint top-notch business analysts.
The job market is filled with various certification and masters programmes for IT employees - like Masters in Business Intelligence, MBA in Business Analytics, etc. For those intent on making a lifetime career in business analytics, prominent certifications to be opted for include, Certification of Competency in Business Analysis (CCBA) and Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP) from the International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA). If you are looking for a Business Analyst certification, these are the two most sought-after certifications by employers looking to appoint top-quality business analysts.
A business analyst profile is among the most wanted of all professions. It requires undertaking challenging responsibilities. With courses like CCBA & CBAP, one can undoubtedly ensure a potentially successful career in business analytics, resourcefully making up the big data and analytics talent gap in organizations.
(Article by Ananthu Nair, additional inputs by Snehith Kumbla)