Best Way to Learn Data Analysis
by Mahmut on December 07, 2020
In this article, I am going to talk about data analysis. If you want to learn about data analysis or want to make a career in this field, then keep reading.
What is Data Analysis
Data analysis is the process of gathering, cleaning, analyzing, and mining data, interpreting results and reporting the findings. With data analysis, we find patterns within data and correlations between different data points. And it is through these patterns and correlations those insights are generated, and conclusions are drawn.
Data analysis helps businesses understand their past performance and informs their decision-making for future actions. Using data analysis, businesses can validate a course of action before committing to it. Saving valuable time and resources and also ensuring greater success.
Different Types of Data Analysis
We are going to explore four primary types of data analysis, each with a different goal and place in the data analysis process.
Descriptive Analytics helps answer the question about what happened over a given period of time by summarizing past data and presenting the findings to stakeholders. It helps provide essential insights into past events.
For example, tracking past performance based on the organization’s key performance indicators or cash flow analysis.
Diagnostic analysis helps answer the question, why did it happen? It takes the insights from descriptive analytics to dig deeper to find the cause of the outcome.
For example, a sudden change in traffic to a website without an obvious cause or an increase in sales in a region where there has been no change in marketing.
Predictive analytics helps answer the question, what will happen next ? Historical data and trends are used to predict future outcomes. Some of the areas in which businesses apply predictive analysis are risk assessment and sales forecasts.
It’s important to note that the purpose of predictive analytics is not to say what will happen in the future, it’s objective is to forecast what might happen in the future. All predictions are probabilistic in nature.
Prescriptive analytics helps answer the question, what should be done about it ? By analyzing past decisions and events, likelihood of different outcomes is estimated on the basis of which a course of action is decided.
Self-driving cars are a good example of Prescriptive analytics. They analyze the environment to make decisions regarding speed, changing lanes, which route to take, etc.
Or airlines automatically adjusting ticket prices based on customer demand, gas prices, the weather, or traffic on connecting routes.
Responsibilities of a Data Analyst
While the role of a Data Analyst carries depending on the types of organizations and the extent to which it has adopted data-driven practices, there are some responsibilities that are typical to a Data Analyst role in today’s organizations.
These include :
Skills of a Data Analyst
Let’s look at some of the skills that are valuable for a Data Analyst. The data analysis process requires a combination of technical, functional, and soft skills.
If you want to learn Data Analytics, you can find lots of sources ( books, courses ) on the internet. The best way to learn something is to learn by doing it. So if you really want to learn it, then build something and learn by doing it.