Table of Contents
- What Is a Data Analyst?
- Data analyst job responsibilities
- How To Become a Data Analyst?
- Earn your undergraduate degree
- Gain experience through internships or entry-level roles
- Take certification exams
- Pursue a graduate degree
- Average Salary for Data Analysts
- Data analysts’ salary in the USA
- Data analysts salary by experience
- Data analysts salary by the company
- Job Outlook for Data Analysts
- Final Thought
Considering how technology keeps advancing and data keeps being produced, it is wise to pursue a career related to data. Data refers to information, and whether you work to collect, review, or analyze it, such jobs have become an essential part of companies optimizing their performance.
When looking for jobs related to data, you will inevitably encounter the “data analyst” job title. But, what is this position? What would your responsibilities be? And, most importantly – what is the salary of a data analyst? Continue reading as we provide answers to all these questions and more!
What Is a Data Analyst?
Data analysts are professionals who work in the data analysis field and utilize various tools and techniques to scrutinize valuable information from data. They serve as one of the primary sources for stakeholders to understand the data related to their companies and use that information provided by data analysts to make strategic business decisions. The best way to understand the profession of data analysts is to go through their responsibilities and day-to-day duties.
Data analyst job responsibilities
Generally, the duties of data analysts depend on the company where they work and the extent to which they use data for decision-making. Some of the responsibilities typically associated with the role of a data analyst are:
- Working with different teams and departments across the company.
- Helping with data collection
- Verifying data quality to guarantee accurate analysis
- Utilizing data to make recommendations for company executives
- Developing regional business plans that align with company goals
- Communicating their insights and suggestions to the other teams
- Monitoring data management processes
- Monitoring system performance
How To Become a Data Analyst?
As you might have noticed from the list of responsibilities associated with their role, data analysts are crucial to businesses. Such professionals are skilled in assessing complex information to help organizations find the best route to follow regarding any problem they face. If you want to prepare for the role of a data analyst, there are a few steps you can follow in regards to education, certification, and work experience.
Earn your undergraduate degree
The minimum requirement for joining the data analysis field is obtaining a bachelor’s degree in computer science, statistics, mathematics, or another related field. Through such degrees, you would gain the necessary skills to fulfill the responsibilities of entry-level data analyst positions. Most bachelor’s degrees take around four years to complete, or even less if the university offers accelerated modes of study.
Gain experience through internships or entry-level roles
In addition to the bachelor’s degree, you also need to develop the skills required for a career as a data analyst through internships or entry-level positions. From the opportunity to put theory into practice to the professionals you meet, the real-world environment you encounter while working or completing internships will be invaluable for your progress toward becoming a successful data analyst.
Take certification exams
Although rarely required from employers, certifications are an excellent way for you to obtain and practice skills needed in the data analysis field. Some of the top certifications you can pursue to enrich your resume are the following:
- Associate Certified Analytics Professional
- Microsoft Certified: Data Analyst Associate
- Microsoft Certified Azure Data Scientist Associate
- IBM Data Science Professional Certificate
- Open Certified Data Scientist
- Cloudera Certified Associate Data Analyst
- Certified Analytics Professional (CAP)
- Springboard Data Analytics Certification
- Google Data Analytics Certificate
- Certification of Professional Achievement in Data Sciences
Pursue a graduate degree
Lastly, to ensure you are well prepared for the data analyst career, especially if you are interested in senior roles, you must continue your education by pursuing graduate degrees. Although a bachelor’s degree and several years of work experience can be enough to help you land data analyst jobs, to progress in this career, you must pursue an MSc in Data Analytics or some other related field. Furthermore, PhDs are another step that can be a stepping stone towards higher positions in the field of data analysis.
Average Salary for Data Analysts
If you tend to be more motivated to work when you feel valued by your company, pursuing a data analyst career is excellent. You will be well compensated for your work and the responsibilities you fulfill; through high salaries. To best understand this, let’s look at the average salary for data analysts in the USA and how it can change based on experience and company.
Data analysts’ salary in the USA
According to reports based on thousands of submitted salaries, the average salary of data analysts in the USA is estimated to be $73,463 per year. This number represents the median of several salaries ranging from as low as $36,000, all the way to $152,000. Furthermore, some of the highest-paying states in the US include:
- Connecticut ($85,574)
- New Jersey ($87,523)
- District of Columbia ($86,502)
- New York ($82,452)
- Maryland ($83,147)
- Rhode Island ($76,970)
- North Carolina ($77,049)
- Virginia ($78,994)
- New Hampshire ($78,221)
- Massachusetts ($85,437)
Data analysts salary by experience
An important factor determining your salary is your experience in a data analyst position. The more experience you have, the more likely you are to be promoted to senior roles that earn more. Below, you can see the data analyst career path, including seniority levels associated with years of experience and the salary you can expect for each one.
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- Data Analyst with two to four years of experience ($69,517 per year)
- Senior Data Analyst with two to four years of experience ($96,809 per year)
- Data Analyst IV with five to seven years of experience ($105,388 per year)
- Principal Data Analyst with more than eight years of experience ($113,453 per year)
- Director of Data with more than eight years of experience ($148,510 per year)
- Vice President of Data with more than eight years of experience ($165,743 per year)
- Chief Data Analyst with more than eight years of experience ($81,415 per year)
Data analysts salary by the company
In addition to the country where you work and the amount of experience you have, your salary will also depend on your employer. Some businesses pay more than others, with the following companies being some of the highest-paying ones:
- Bloomberg L.P. – $77,000 per year
- Capital One – $89,853 per year
- Qualcomm – $103,713 per year
- Amazon – $55,411 per year
- Google – $102,063 per year
- Cisco Systems – $110,785 per year
- Comscore – $78,553 per year
- Wayfair – $74,256 per year
- IBM – $82,639 per year
- IHME – $58,338 per year
- Morningstar – $58,496 per year
- Meta – $122,322 per year
- Apple – $75,352 per year
Job Outlook for Data Analysts
The high salaries for data analysts are understandable when we consider the demand in the job market for such professionals. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of operations and research analysts, which includes data analysts, will continue to grow. Due to advancements in technology and the fact that business companies are still looking for professionals to help with planning and informed decision-making, the data analyst job outlook looks promising. Reports show that the employment of data analysts will experience a positive 25% change from 2020 to 2030.
It is always wise to seek job positions that have good job outlooks and come with lucrative salaries – two elements present in the profession of a data analyst. So, if you are interested in starting a career as a data analyst, we have covered the basics of this position and provided the information needed to help you determine your next step.
As a data analyst, you would not be leaving things to chance or luck but instead make calculated and informed decisions towards success.