A Data Analyst or Business Analyst Career, Which Is Better?

 
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Data Analysts - What Is The Toughest Challenge Facing Your Career
Data Analysts - What Is The Toughest Challenge Facing Your Career

The Data Analyst Career Coaching service answers challenging questions about data analyst careers or jobs. Click here to submit your own question.

Here Is A Data Analyst’s Coaching Question …

The toughest challenge facing my career? Choosing or building my domain of experience around my actual skills set.

Though computer technologies have been feeding me and my family over he last few years, Data Analyst or Business Analyst would better equate my educational background in statistical methods of econometrics.

I just don’t know if I should do the move in my actual old age and responsibilities.

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    12 Responses to "A Data Analyst or Business Analyst Career, Which Is Better?"

    1. Data Analyst Training   February 1, 2012 at 6:53 am

      What really matters is “Doing The Work That You Love At Any Age” because if you take the time to identify what you love, what you are passionate about or what you do very well, then the question of whether age is a barrier becomes largely irrelevant, as long as their is no medical risk involved.

      One of my friends is an older gentleman in his sixties. He works on roofs and does other types of home repair jobs. Well, recently, he fell down from a ladder and injured himself during the fall.

      My friend is passionate about his craft, but still, in his situation, there is a real issue because falling down a ladder can be a serious medical issue for an older gentleman in his late sixties than say, for a younger gentleman in his thirties.

      If, you are not facing a serious medical risk, then go for the work you love and don’t hold back just because you are older than the average person in the workforce.

      One of the stories that made the headlines recently is that of a two centenarians (100 years+), a lady who went to work every day and attended to clients as a therapist and a medical doctor.

      1. Read this article: “At age 102, this therapist is still psyched”

      2. Read this article: “At a 100 years old, an Ohio doctor is still in”

      The reason why these Centenarians still go to work is that they enjoy what they are doing, they love the opportunities for social interaction that comes from work, they love the opportunity to exercise their minds and bodies which will otherwise atrophy more quickly if not used and they love helping people.

      Here is how you can choose between a data analysis or business analysis career:

      1. Choose the type of work (data analysis or business analysis), which you love doing the most

      2. Choose the type of work (data analysis or business analysis) that makes you feel like you are really making a difference by helping others

      3. Choose the type of work (data analysis or business analysis) that you feel you are gifted for or naturally endowed to do

      4. Choose the type of work (data analysis or business analysis) that allows you to interact with other people either online or in-person

      5. Choose work (data analysis or business analysis) where you get to actually use your mind or body to solve hard / important problems

      6. Don’t choose work (data analysis or business analysis) solely based on how much you get paid. While that may be barely OK, when you are just starting out from college or high school, it becomes more and more unacceptable as the sole reason for working as you progress in age.

      If you have settled on data analysis vs. business analysis as the two (2) best career paths for you, make a determination as to which career is better for you by answering the following questions:

      1. What are the differences between a typical job description for a data analyst and a typical job description for a business analyst?

      2. What are the skills required for a data analyst job versus a business analyst job?

      3. What concepts or topics do you need to master to become a business analyst compared to those which you need to learn or master to become a data analyst?

      4. What type of personality is required for a business analyst job versus a data analyst job and why?

      5. What tools do business analysts use compared to those used by data analysts?

      Finally, you are the only one who can decide the better career option. What I have done is to make it easy for you to make the right choice by giving you a framework for evaluating the two (2) careers.

      Feel free to post your questions, discussions or comments about this topic on this post and I will answer it for you.

    2. Simon (Dallas, Texas)   February 2, 2012 at 6:04 am

      Greetings:

      I have a BBA (MIS Major – 1990) from a top 20 university.

      Worked in IT from 1991 – 2001 as an IT consultant. Here’s a brief description of my work history:

      – Two years working for a big Six Accounting Firm doing Risk Mgmt Consulting.

      – Four years working for a university writing SQL queries using Oracle RDBMS and producing stand-alone MS-Access applications.

      – Four years working for a non-profit organization producing web-based applications using VB, ASP and SQL Server as well as stand-alone applications using MS-Access.

      For the last ten years, I’ve owned and operated several retail and hospitality businesses.

      I am now seriously thinking about going back to IT to work as a Data Analyst or Business Analyst.

      Would the Data Analyst and/or Business Analyst training help me in getting a job given that I’ve been out of IT for the last ten years?

      Also, how do I overcome the fact that I don’t have recent IT experience when looking for an IT job given that employers are looking for people that have CURRENT work experience?

      Any thoughts, suggestions/advise would be greatly appreciated.

      Thanks.

    3. Kevin Nguyen   March 1, 2012 at 4:11 pm

      I have the same exactly problem with in Simon, i really want to go back and work in IT, please help me, i don’t have much experience, i’ve graduated in CIS from University of Houston from 2001.

      Thanks!

      Kevin

    4. Kevin Nguyen   March 1, 2012 at 4:17 pm

      i graduated from University, and i worked for couple companies, then i do my own business, now i want to get back to work in IT again, such as Data Analyst, or Business Analyst….

      I don’t have recent IT experience when looking for an IT job given that employers are looking for, any suggestions/advise would be greatly appreciated.

      Kevin

    5. Ariel   March 15, 2012 at 3:49 pm

      Hi,

      I am new in this site. I am currently working in IT field now as Applications Analyst.

      How would I going to be more competitive when I want to jump into another job or company with recent experience as MS Access Database design only with basic in VB6, .net and SQL. Kindly advise the best way improve my skills in the IT industry.

      Kind Regards,
      Ariel

    6. Data Analyst Training   April 3, 2012 at 9:32 am

      How To Overcome Recent Information Technology (IT) Work Experience Issues When Looking For A Data Analyst Job?

      1. Give Employers What They Want!

        You can’t overcome lack of work experience until you get some work experience.

        You really can’t and shouldn’t even try to work around the recent work experience requirement, because if you try to do that, you will just be wasting your time and setting yourself up for disappointments & heartaches.

        The real question is not “how can I get a data analyst job without recent work experience”, but, “how can I get / find work that I can put on my resume as recent work experience”.

      2. Don’t Put The Cart Before The Horse!

        When it comes to getting data analyst work or getting into any information technology (IT) job that you have never done before or done recently, “don’t make the mistake of putting the cart before the horse”!

        What do I mean by that? What I mean is that you first have to learn data analysis before you start worrying about the recent work experience bit.

        You are kind of jumping to the “work experience” bit without first taking care of other issues which logically come before your work experience issues.

        Here is what I mean: You will hardly be able to get an internship position or a job where you can gain recent work experience when you haven’t taken the time to “Learn All You Can About Data Analysis”.

        Think about this logically. If you are hired as an intern or even as a Data Analyst, what can you do for the employer or organization who gives you the job offer?

        If you can’t perform Data Analyst duties, roles and responsibilities, you are essentially asking the employer to hire you and pay you for a job that you can’t do!

        And even in an intern position, where perhaps, you are paid zero dollars ($0), who is going to train you to perform those data analyst duties?

        This is the main reason, why you will find it hard top get any work experience … you have nothing to offer a potential employer … not recent data analyst work experience, not professional data analysis skills and not any data analysis background / learning / knowledge …

      I suggest that you break this “Lack of Experience Cycle” by Taking Care of Business In The Right Order …

      Focus on “What You Can Do, Rather Than What You Can’t Do … as Stephen Covey puts its…”

      In “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People”, Stephen Covey mentions that proactive people do not worry or focus on factors or things over which they have little or no control … instead they focus on their “Sphere Of Influence” … those factors or circumstances over which they exercise control!

      Here is what you can do …

      Get as much knowledge of data analysis as possible … I don’t care how you get it and I am not going to start comparing the effectiveness of one method versus another … that is the topic for another discussion … what is most important right now is that you get that knowledge …

      After you get the knowledge, start working on opportunities for experience. Since you have taken the time to learn data analysis, you will have something to offer someone who asks you why they should trust you with a position …

      Finally, consolidate all your experience using a Resume Writer, so that the experience section of your resume can be rewritten / polished to reflect all your recent work experience

    7. Seruwaia Hennessy (Melbourne, Australia)   April 4, 2012 at 7:07 pm

      I am currently working as a Functional Application Support Analyst and have been for the last decade.

      I am interested in doing some other IT areas – Business Analyst or Data Analyst.

      How do I progress from here or what training is available to me.

    8. Sricharan   April 4, 2012 at 8:11 pm

      What is the difference between data analyst and process analyst and business analyst?

      Is changing the career from voice-based BPO to analyst a good idea?

    9. PJ (Charlotte, North Carolina)   April 19, 2012 at 7:35 pm

      I’m an operations analyst looking to go into the business/ data analyst field.

      I have no formal IT training, but some knowledge in that area. Are these classes appropriate for me?

    10. Data Analyst Training   May 18, 2012 at 3:26 pm

      You may join the data analyst boot camp online training using this link OR the You may join the business analyst boot camp online training using this link

      You may even enroll for both training programs at the same time if you prefer … enrolling for both at the same time, earns you a discount!

    11. Paula   July 19, 2012 at 12:03 pm

      Hi,
      I am looking for an Operational Analyst in the Raleigh NC area.

      Contact me for enquiries.

    12. neeraj   November 7, 2012 at 4:21 pm

      hi sir, it was nice reading your information on sas and business analyst
      jobs.
      could you please guide me through with my career. I m fresher graduate.
      and I don’t possess any work experience currently. I completed my
      graduation in IT and I am intrested in getting trained in SAS technologies
      and SAS programming. can you please help me out here with my decision
      on whether or not I should go ahead with it. would it be helpful for building
      up my career in business and data analysts and related jobs? what are the
      option I should take up with.? show helpful is it or is it helpful at all rather,
      if not what I should be possibly doing to see myslelf growing in above
      mentioned fields and their jobs. and which one do yo think will fetch better income.
      thankyousir.

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