data analyst

The modern world is increasingly turning digital. We shop online, study online, catch up with friends online, and work online. To get ahead, you need to be comfortable with this digital world, whether in your personal life or in your professional one. 

Understanding data is even more important if you hope to have a career in a business-related field. Increasingly, businesses of all shapes and sizes are using data to make business decisions. All kinds of different industries rely on data, from travel companies to search engines and small e-commerce stores. Even industries you might not think of such as eBay sellers or pet food manufacturers all rely on data to hone their customer service, find new markets, and test the appeal of new products. 

At this point, you are probably beginning to understand the importance of data analytics, but if you are still on the fence about the usefulness of a data analytics degree, read on to learn more.

Become a More Desirable Job Candidate

Anyone with a degree in data analytics is in a prime position to secure a well-paid job. The current job market is highly competitive and if you don’t have a good understanding of all things digital, you will be left behind, beaten by more qualified candidates.

Most companies filter out potential employees by their qualifications. The more well qualified you are, the easier it will be to make it through to the next round or an in-person interview. Even if a job doesn’t specifically ask for a data analytics degree, the fact you are qualified to work with data is going to work in your favor. In addition, demand for data analysts has risen exponentially in the last few years, with one UK study reporting demand for data scientists and data engineers rising by 231% since 2016.

The fact is that anything you can do to differentiate yourself from the hundreds of other candidates is a good thing. Yes, studying for a degree is a huge investment, but in the long term, it’s good for your job prospects.

Work for the Top Organizations

All big organizations understand the value of raw data. There is so much of it being generated that most large companies rely on data analysts to make sense of the data piling up every minute of every hour. Large organizations rely on data when making decisions. Everything from decisions about whether the market is ready for a new product to cash flow forecasting is dependent on insights gleaned from data.

Some areas of business are now solely reliant on data. One good example is marketing since this is mostly done online for many brands. Data is used to see whether marketing campaigns are working, how well customers respond to products, and whether there are new markets ripe for plundering, and more. 

If you want to work for the top organizations, enrolling in Emerson College’s Master of Arts in Digital Marketing and Data Analytics online program could be a smart investment. Chances are, the doors will open for you and you will find it easier to secure an interview. And if you are really lucky, you might even be offered a job right out of college!

Earn More Money

Some of the best-paid jobs are in the tech industry, and data analytics is no exception. According to job board Indeed, the average salary for a data analyst is around $68k per year, with additional cash bonuses and benefits on top. However, this is based on minimal experience and the longer you work in the field, the more you will earn.

In addition, because experienced data analysts are very much in demand, the top companies are more than willing to pay top dollar for the right candidates. Indeed, data indicates that big companies such as Facebook and Pacific Gas & Electric typically pay more than $120k per year for the best candidates. 

It’s also worth noting that jobs in certain cities pay more than others. For example, data analysts working in Washington DC tend to earn more than those working in Chicago or Philadelphia. It’s important to bear this in mind when considering where you would like to work once you have earned your data analytics degree. 

Become a More Successful Entrepreneur

It has never been easier to start a business and there are millions of entrepreneurs out there, smashing it in various sectors and ensuring the economy stays afloat after the pandemic. 

The great thing about a data analytics degree is that it will help you understand the importance of the data your business generates. Whether this is website analytics or customer service feedback, being able to understand what you are looking at when you have pages of data on your desk, and more importantly, draw conclusions from the data, are valuable skills for any ambitious entrepreneur. 

All too often, entrepreneurs have a great idea but are unable to turn it into a successful business. With a data analytics degree, you’ll be taught all about problem-solving and how to think analytically, which will pay dividends as your business grows in strength and stature. 

Data Analysts are In Demand

Demand for data analysts is strong but the supply of suitable candidates remains relatively low. Most businesses these days understand the value of online marketing, so they are keen to hire people with data analytics experience. This ensures you will always have a job in a competitive market. Unlike some career paths, data analysis has a bright future. 

A Data Analytics Degree Opens More Doors

Some degrees are more valuable than others. Earn a Fine Art degree or a degree in Ancient History and chances are good that not many employers will be queuing up to hire you unless you have other great attributes. 

Life is different when you have a data analytics degree. As well as the big tech and retail brands looking to hire data analytics students, there are many other industries and organizations keen to snap up well-qualified data analysts. 

As well as marketing and business intelligence, you can move into a career in education, finance, and sales. In addition, government agencies such as the CIA will be keen to hire people like you. You can even move into politics, as modern political campaigns rely on data analytics to see which way the vote will swing on election day. 

Become a Decision Maker in Your Company

If you already have a job you enjoy but are hoping to move up the ladder into a management role, a data analytics degree will stand you in good stead. Decision-makers in any company need to get to grips with data before they finalize key business strategies and develop new policies. Data analysts have a key role in these processes and if you are qualified in this field, this makes you a great candidate for an executive position or a seat at the boardroom table. 

An analytical mind is the only quality you will need, but it definitely helps smooth the path to the C-suite

Pivot into Consulting Work

Finally, don’t overlook the benefits of having a data analytics degree if you like the idea of freelancing as a consultant. Whether you specialize in digital marketing and data analysis or data science, your skills will be in demand. Because this is a job that is mainly carried out online, you are not tied to any one location. Instead, you can work from anywhere, whether that happens to be a beach in Costa Rica or a condo in Miami. The nature of freelance consultancy work also gives you the freedom to fit your job around family and personal pursuits, which makes it very attractive for Gen Z and Millennials. 

Working as a freelance consultant means you can parachute in and get to grips with problems within the company, by analyzing the data available and working out where the problems are. It’s more fun than having to deal with office politics in a permanent role. Once the job is over, you are free to move on to a new challenge. 

Freelance business consultants with a specialism in data analytics are always in demand, both in the corporate sector and beyond. The best-qualified individuals can usually name their price as their work speaks for itself.

Choose the Right Degree Course

Once you have decided to study data analytics, the next step is to find a college course. There are many courses available but you must check the course curriculum details to ensure the modules cover the topics that interest you the most. 

Check out various course options and decide whether you want to study full-time or part-time. Part-time study might be a better option if you plan to study around a full-time job. If this is your plan, consider asking your employer to cover the tuition fees, as they will benefit from your newly acquired skills. Don’t forget that many online colleges now offer data analytics as a course option. This might be perfect if you have a job and family to support. 

Data analytics is a continually developing field. If you are looking for a future-proof job, it is definitely one to consider as a career.