Breaking into the world of data: Top careers in data analysis

Breaking into data

Data is a fast growing field with exciting opportunities for professionals in all industries and across the world.

Organisations have started to compile, organise, store, and analyse vast volumes of data relevant to their activities in most sectors of the economy. Big data is gathered from all sorts of companies and they continue to use it to build or optimise decisions. B2B and B2C trade, health care, retail, and marketing firms in diverse fields all use data analytics to optimise operations and maximise revenues. Therefore, wringing actionable answers out of data has become a critical and desirable business skill. 

As you delve into the jobs outlined below and start applying for positions in the field of data analysis you’ll notice most of them require similar foundational skills and our Professional Data Analysis course is a great place to start mastering them. 

The top four critical skills for any data role include:

  1. A working knowledge of R 
  2. A solid understanding of how to use Python. 
  3. Working with data sources using SQL 
  4. Understanding how to communicate and visualise data


In industry, these critical skills are in high demand in a variety of roles. Regardless of the career path you choose, being able to visualise and communicate insights about your company’s services and bottom line is an invaluable skill set that is sought after. 

As a data analysis graduate you’re probably thinking about the potential career avenues you could consider as well as the kinds of roles you’ll work alongside.

Here are five key roles you’ll find on data teams: 

1. Data Analyst

Data Analysts tell stories with stats. They’re fact-focused and communicative. As a Data Analyst, you’ll clean, organise and analyse data. Through analytics, machine learning and statistical methods, you prepare data for use in predictive modelling. Your insights help to solve business problems. And, by the way, you can code.

2. Data Scientist

A data scientist investigates and builds methods and strategies to wrangle large data collections, often from various sources, analyses the knowledge and uses analytical thinking to find ways of implementing it, often by technological solutions such as algorithms or predictive models. Both data analysts and data scientists need excellent communication and visualisation skills

3. Data Architect

Data architects use their knowledge of data-oriented computer languages to organise and maintain data in relational databases and corporate repositories, developing data architecture strategies for each subject area of the enterprise data model. They are mostly proficient in SQL and are extremely detail oriented.

4. Data Consultant

Data consultants are in charge of improving business processes through analysing financial or business models by utilising their data analysis skills and pulling data from various sources. If you’re looking for a role that is more strategic, this could be the ideal role for you.

5. Machine Learning Engineer

Machine learning engineers create data funnels and deliver software solutions. They typically need statistics and programming skills to build systems that can perform.

Other careers with growing demand for data skills

Data is everywhere, and many other career paths are seeing a rising demand for professionals with data skills. Here are just two:

Product Management

As a product manager your role is to own the product from conception to execution, every stage requiring an amalgamation of data and insights to inform strategy. At the birth of a product, analysing market trends and utilising predictive analytics to anticipate potential problems is critical. As the product grows, utilising insights from user data helps determine what features should be included and what improvements should be made. Having data analysis skills can propel you to greater heights.

Digital Marketing

From email marketing to social media and even Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) most digital marketers wrangle large amounts of data to refine their strategies. As a serious digital marketing expert, your insights and strategies must be data driven. Understanding what resonates with users by utilising your analytical skills is a crucial process in refining your strategy and communicating with business stakeholders

While these are just a few specific examples, data is now an essential part of every business across every industry. Whether you are hoping to level up in your current role or change careers altogether, to be successful in today’s business landscape, you need to learn how to leverage data analysis and data interpretation to make critical decisions.

Take a deep dive into data with our full-time Professional Data Analysis course


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