Business Intelligence Analyst: 5 Steps to Start Your Career

Business intelligence analysts use data that a company collects and analyze it to make informed decisions to improve efficiency. Business intelligence analysts use a variety of tools and techniques to query databases and identify trends, and then produce reports for the management. The goal of a business intelligence analyst is to combine big data with a deep understanding of the company to produce actionable insights that will give the company an edge. Continue reading to find out how to become an analyst in business intelligence.

What is a Business Intelligence Analyst?

You’re looking for answers to the questions “What is business intelligence?” or “What does a business Intelligence analyst do?”. Business intelligence is a field that blends data analytics and business acumen. It can also be called applied statistical analysis. Analyzing requires skills in data management and statistics as well as computer science. Business intelligence is the use of data to answer questions, understand trends and guide company strategy.

An analyst in business may have both technical and non-technical skills. This helps to bridge the gap between management, business intelligence and management. It allows you to analyze the past performance of the company to determine the current state of the company and to influence future actions.

To understand what products customers will buy next, retailers use business intelligence information. This is based on customer purchase patterns. A warehouse company might identify the most commonly shipped products and place them closest to the packing tables to speed up fulfillment.

Data, statistical analysis and visualization are used by business intelligence analysts to create predictive statistical models that support decision-making. They often analyze historical data to understand the results.

Business intelligence analysts may analyze data to identify insights that can help improve an organization’s ability to make informed decisions about its future actions. You might be interested in learning the following skills if you are interested in becoming a business Intelligence Analyst.

  • Analytics with descriptive data
  • Predictive analytics
  • Data collection methods
  • A/B Testing
  • Forecasting
  • Correlation and causation
  • Regression analysis
  • Data visualization and interpretation

Other skills include problem solving and communication.

Analysts in business intelligence may be employed in many industries, including finance, accounting and marketing.

Five Steps to Become an Analyst in Business Intelligence

A bachelor’s degree is often required for the job of business intelligence analyst. However, other career options are available. This role requires hard skills like data modeling and statistics, as well as soft skills such as problem-solving as well as communication.

Get a professional certificate

A professional certificate, which reflects your expertise and skills, is one way to get started.

Depending on your undergraduate preparation, Data Science Bootcamps or Online Business Analytics Courses could help you prepare for your chosen job. A certificate may be issued to confirm your participation in the course. These programs can help you to develop certain skills or teach you how to use standard data analysis and business intelligence software.

Look for certifications that are specific to tools like

  • Hadoop
  • Python
  • R
  • SAS

The Certified Business Intelligence Professional certification by Transforming Data with Intelligence was designed for business intelligence professionals. The requirements for the exam are met by applicants who have at least two years’ experience in business intelligence and a minimum of a bachelor’s level in the field. You can take the exam at the “practitioner”, or the “mastery” levels depending on how you score. A test-based credential can help you stand out professionally.

A professional certificate can help you get your first job or to transition to a different role.

Get an advanced degree

A master’s degree in business analytics may be helpful for professionals looking to progress in their career. A master’s degree in business administration (MBA), depending on what career path you choose, may be able to give students the education that they need.

Master’s degrees in business analytics are focused on predictive and prescriptive techniques that help companies plan for the future. A MS in Data Science focuses more on machine learning and cloud computing, as well as database systems. Business analytics degrees typically cover data manipulation, visualization and extraction to answer questions about business operations and provide insight for optimizing performance.

Examine the requirements for master’s degrees in business analytics and the curriculum to help you choose a program. Be sure to examine the requirements and how they relate to your bachelor’s degree. If you don’t have data science classes or if data science knowledge is required, you might be required to attend classes to get the skills you need to complete the program. An online master’s degree in business analytics is a good option if you are looking to maintain a work-life balance while attending school.

Apply for the Business Intelligence Analyst position

The job description of a business intelligence analyst will differ depending on the company and the role. Business intelligence analysts analyze data from companies, industry, and competitors to determine the company’s position and performance in the market. This could involve working across systems and departments to analyze the company’s procedures and processes with the aim of improving operational and financial performance.

An entry-level job may be available if you have a bachelor’s in a relevant field or additional training, such as an online bootcamp. Some companies prefer to have work experience before you can move into business intelligence analyst roles. Analysts can also be project managers (formal or informal), so it is worth having supervisory experience.

Your resume will showcase your education and skills. It is important to include certificates and side projects that highlight your experiences.

Interviews for business intelligence positions may include both behavioral and skill questions. This is to assess the applicant’s soft- and hard skills. Employers might look for confidence in your communication and problem-solving skills.

Analysts may want to show that they are familiar with common analytical tools and can identify solutions that could be applied in their day-to-day work. Companies may use case studies or puzzles to assess applicants’ ability to solve problems and come up with solutions. Although the question might not provide an answer, the company is interested in how applicants approach problems that are uncertain.

Never Stop Learning

A business intelligence analyst may find it useful to study coding languages and data science tools.

Online courses can be used to learn languages and keep you current with your skills. Some languages are open-source or well-known enough to offer free resources. You can also take intensive courses or bootcamps to get up-to-speed.

This is a list of languages, tools and resources to help you build your technical skills.

  • C#
  • Hadoop
  • Julia
  • pandas
  • PowerBI
  • PyCharm
  • Python
  • SAS
  • SQL
  • Tableau

You may not be able to use all the programming languages at one company. This is because the programming languages used can vary depending on the industry sector or employer.

To become a Business Intelligence Analyst, networking is key

Networking is an important skill for business intelligence analysts.

Networking is an excellent way for job seekers to meet potential employers and present themselves in informal settings. You may find out about unfilled positions or meet people who are willing to offer a job. You may also learn about the hiring requirements of companies through networking. In informal networking settings, you may get feedback that is not possible in an interview.

Networking can help business intelligence analysts work in organizations achieve their tasks more efficiently. Analysts may work in multiple departments or groups. Therefore, networking can help you to get to know these people and create an effective team.

Outlook for Business Intelligence Analyst Jobs

According to O*NET OnLine, business intelligence analysts have a bright future. The expected job growth for management analysts in 2020-2030 is 14% according to the BLS. This is much faster than the average job which has an 8% projected growth rate over the same time period. O*NET OnLine reports that there are approximately 7,100 job openings for business intelligence analysts between 2020 and 2030.

In 2020 , the median salary for a business intelligence analyst was $98,230 or $47.23 per hour. There are many roles for business analysts. They can work directly for companies, consulting firms or as self-employed analysts.


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