Do you consider yourself inquisitive, strategic, independent, organized, patient, detail-oriented, communicative, and story-driven? If you're nodding your head, you might be a perfect fit for a BI Analyst role.
BI Analytics is a growing profession with many thrilling career opportunities. Let's break it down and get to know one of the most sought-after careers. It might be the dream job you were looking for.
What Is a BI Analyst?
The modern world is churning out data at hyper speed. However, all this data is merely gibberish if there's no one to decode the precious stories behind it. That's where the Business Intelligence Analysts step in.
Business Intelligence Analytics refers to the process of collecting, analyzing, and interpreting data to generate insights and make data-driven decisions within an organization. Imagine a company striving to double their revenue by the end of the year and assigning significant budgets to ad campaigns. Their recent promotional campaign's results are in, but they're just numbers that alone don’t make much sense yet. Your task is to transform these numbers into a cohesive story. This story should help the sales team understand if their investment was effective and enable them to craft the next campaign strategy based on the actions that worked.
Nobody wants to invest money in guesswork and speculation.
BI Analysts help business management make accurate data-driven decisions. They are basically data superheroes who are hugely vital at all levels of all organizations.
To do their job, BI Analysts use various tools and techniques to transform raw data into meaningful information. Using tools like SQL, spreadsheets, and data visualization software like Tableau, they communicate with clients and stakeholders to understand needs and provide the right solutions.
What do BI Analysts do?
Typically, the work of a BI Analyst consists of the following:
Data collection and analysis: BI Analysts gather data from various sources such as databases, spreadsheets, and business applications. They clean, transform, and organize the data to ensure its accuracy and reliability. They then analyze the data using statistical techniques and data visualization tools like Tableau and Power BI to identify patterns, trends, and correlations.
Reporting and visualization: BI Analysts create visually appealing and easy-to-understand reports, dashboards, and data visualizations to present their findings. They use tools like Tableau, Power BI, or Excel to create charts, graphs, and interactive dashboards that enable stakeholders to quickly grasp the insights derived from the data.
Performance monitoring: BI Analysts track key performance indicators (KPIs) and monitor business metrics to assess performance against goals. They identify areas of improvement, spot anomalies or deviations, and provide recommendations for optimizing processes or strategies.
Forecasting and predictive analysis: BI Analysts use statistical modeling and forecasting techniques to predict future trends and outcomes based on historical data. This helps organizations make informed decisions and plan for the future.
What do BI Analysts Need to Know?
BI Analysts need a variety of skills and tools in order to collaborate smoothly. Here are some of the tools that BI Analysts use in their work:
- Structured Query Language (SQL): This is one of the essential tools BI Analysts need. It serves to manage and manipulate databases while also making data accessible, extractable, and analyzable.
- Excel: Microsoft Excel has become the go-to tool for many analysts. Not only can it perform basic calculations, but it also handles advanced data analysis, modeling, and visualization tasks.
- Tableau: This data visualization software makes data more comprehensible and accessible by creating interactive dashboards and reports.
- PowerBI: This Microsoft tool was designed to convert data from various sources into interactive dashboards and reports for Business Intelligence.
- Google Data Studio: This reporting tool makes your data accessible and understandable through data visualization.
- Python: While not required for every data analysis task, some Business Intelligence Analysts use Python for more complex analyses and to manipulate large data sets. Its utility can make your job much simpler!
- R: This is another programming language sometimes utilized in business intelligence for statistical analysis and data visualization.
- SAS: This software suite can help users perform advanced analytics, data management, and predictive analytics.
- ETL tools: ETL (extract, transform, and load) tools such as Informatica, Talend, and Microsoft SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) are frequently employed to, unsurprisingly, extract, transform, and load data. Such solutions help techies gather information from multiple sources before prepping it for analysis. After that, the data is finally loaded into a warehouse for storage and use.
- Data warehousing solutions: Familiarity with data warehousing tools such as Amazon Redshift, Google BigQuery, or Microsoft Azure can be invaluable when handling large datasets.
No need to panic if you don't have a tech background or if you’re not familiar with these instruments. At least at first, you'll primarily use spreadsheets, SQL, and Tableau — some of the industry’s most in-demand and transferable skills. And you can learn these from scratch rather quickly. However, if you do want to go deeper and truly solidify an advanced skill set, TripleTen can help you gain these abilities in just six months!
What Are the Career Prospects of a BI Analyst?
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job openings for analysts are expected to grow by a staggering 23% between 2021 and 2031, so it’s safe to say that if you like stability, this career path is right for you.
And then, once you’re on the career ladder, your responsibilities will grow, but so will your paycheck! A senior BI Analyst earns as much as $128,600, while a BI Team Lead can bring in $130,000 to manage a department.
It’s totally up to you to choose which role you feel more comfortable in. If you’d like to adhere to the business side of things and develop in Business Intelligence, you can become a BI Managing Director, where you’ll enjoy a role as important as the CEO’s and help the board to make well-informed decisions about the company’s future. The position also comes with an average pay of $230,000 a year – what a great deal.
But if you consider yourself more of a data geek, you can still enjoy a job that gives you the full flexibility of a tech position as you analyze data like a pro. In fact, you can even switch to data science later, as your background will enable you to make a swift transition to this exciting field!
Learning BI Analytics with TripleTen
TripleTen’s BIA bootcamp is an innovative program and your fast track to becoming a BI Analyst in just six months. You will master the art of Excel and spreadsheets, learn how to craft impactful business analysis using SQL, and solidify your skills in storytelling and data visualizations during your final project. You’ll also have a career prep course so that you can start looking into a new job even before graduation.
So are you ready to take the leap and turn raw data into actionable business strategies? Ready to become an essential asset to any organization, to be the one who finds the narrative in a sea of numbers? Start your journey with TripleTen today!