Career

How to start your Data Analytics Journey

Fatai Tella
Published: September 16, 2023

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How to Embark on Your Data Analytics Journey

The era of data-driven decision-making is here, and the demand for data professionals has never been higher. But how do you pivot or commence a career in data analytics? Here’s a step-by-step guide:

1. Do Your Research:

Before you jump in, understand the industry. But, remember, don’t just chase the lucrative salary or the allure of “big data”. Be passionate about solving problems and extracting knowledge from data.

Example: Jane, an aspiring data analyst, began her journey by reading about the impact of data analytics in healthcare. Her motivation wasn’t the potential income but the opportunity to improve patient outcomes.

2. Understand the Diversity of Data Roles:

The data realm is vast, with various roles catering to different skill sets and interests. Here are some of the roles defined:

Data Analyst: Extracts insights from data to inform business strategies.

Data Scientist: Delves deeper into data, using advanced techniques like machine learning to predict future trends.

Data Engineer: Ensures the robustness and reliability of data infrastructure.

Data Architect: Designs the blueprint for data integration and storage.

Data Governance Officer: Sets the standards for data quality and usage.

Data Privacy Officer: Safeguards user information and ensures regulatory compliance.

Example: Large e-commerce companies often employ all these roles in tandem to ensure they can capture, process, and analyze customer data efficiently.

3. Self-Evaluation:

  • Reflect on your strengths and passions.
  • What are your existing skills?
  • What past experiences can you leverage?
  • What truly excites you?

Example: If you have a background in database management, transitioning to a data engineer role might be smoother.

4. Chart Your Learning Path:

  • Identify the skills you need.
  • Plan a timeline for acquiring them.
  • Prioritize based on your target role.

Tip: Analyzing LinkedIn profiles of established professionals in your desired role can offer a clear skill roadmap.

5. Choose Your Learning Platform:

Everyone has a unique learning style. Find platforms that resonate with yours:

Visual Learners: Platforms like Coursera or Udemy, which offer video tutorials, might be beneficial.

Readers: Blogs from Towards Data Science or Machine Learning Mastery can provide in-depth textual insights.

Example: Tom preferred hands-on challenges, so he honed his skills using Kaggle competitions.

6. Join Data Communities:

Engage with both niche and broad data communities. They can be invaluable for networking, knowledge sharing, and staying updated.

Example: Data Science Community (moderated) and Data Science Central are popular communities that host discussions, webinars, and articles.

7. Connect with Data Professionals Online:

  • Their journey can offer insights and inspiration.
  • Engage, ask questions, and seek mentorship.
  • Platforms like Twitter and LinkedIn can be great starting points.

      8. Set Achievable Goals:

      Short-Term Goals: Acquire specific skills, earn certifications, or complete online courses.

      Long-Term Goals: Build a portfolio to showcase your expertise or land your dream data role.

      Example: Maria’s short-term goal was to learn Python for data analysis, and her long-term aim was to become a lead data scientist at a tech firm.

      9. Practice Relentlessly:

      Theory is essential, but application solidifies learning.

      Solve real-world problems, participate in hackathons, or undertake personal data projects.

      Example: After learning about time series forecasting, Ahmed used his newfound knowledge to predict stock prices, giving him both practice and a potential tool for investment.

      Remember, every data professional started somewhere. The key is persistence, continuous learning, and a genuine passion for harnessing the power of data. Safe travels on your data analytics journey!

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      Victoria Oladepo
      Victoria Oladepo
      27 days ago

      This is really an inspiration and guide all together. I think this is what I need to get going and break this shackles call FEAR. It’s time to face this dream and get the best from it. TRANSITIONING to the world of TECH.
      Thank you for this amazing article Tella.

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      Abubakar Muhammad Musa

      Summary

      Abubakar Muhammad Musa is currently a Sharia Advisor and Consultant for SHAPE Knowledge Services a consulting firm based in Kuwait. He has been involved in product development, Sharia research and approval of Islamic banking products for different clients. His work covers retail banking, corporate banking and project finance deals.

      Formerly, Abubakar worked as a Researcher in different units at International Shariah Research Academy for Islamic Finance (ISRA) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Besides his primary assignments in ISRA, he taught Shariah Rules in Financial Transactions to Chartered Islamic Finance Professional (CIFP) Masters online Students of International Centre for Education in Islamic Finance (INCEIF), Malaysia. He also taught MBA and BBA Students different Islamic Banking and Finance Subjects at University College of Bahrain.

      Abubakar holds two Diplomas with distinction, one in Islamic Law and the other in Arabic Language from Al-Imam University Riyadh. He also holds LLB (Hons) degree in Shariah from the same University. He successfully completed his (CIFP) Professional Masters Degree Programme at (INCEIF), Malaysia. He had his internship program on Islamic Banking & Finance at Fajr Capital in Kuala Lumpur. During the programme, Abubakar conducted research relating to product structuring and market development.

      Abdurraheem Ahmad Sayi

      Summary

      Abdurraheem Ahmad Sayi is a legal practitioner and Consultant of over 16 years of active legal practice. He is currently the principal partner, A.A. Sayi & Co. (Qist Chambers) and Qadi, Independent Shari’ah Panel of Lagos State – a platform, through which he has delivered several judgments of in-depth analysis, widely applauded by leading legal and intellectual icons, including learned Judges, professors of law and Islamic Studies.

      He is the Executive Director/C.E.O., ClearPath Islamic Centre (Incorporated), Lekki-Lagos and Chief Imam, SilverPoint Central Mosque, Badore, Ajah-Lagos. Fondly called Imam Sayi, Abdurraheem is the designate Chairman, Shari’ah Advisory Committee, Mutual Benefit Takaaful.

      Imam Sayi has also authored a few works, some of which include: The Financial Obligations: a compendium of essays on monetary or material obligations under Islamic Law and Waqf (Charity Endowment): The Governing Principles.

      He holds a Certificate on Improving Personal Effectiveness from the Lagos Business School (Pan African University) and he is a recipient of numerous awards and certificates of merits.

      Abdulkader Thomas

      Education:

      Master of Arts Law and Diplomacy, The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy.

      Bachelor of Arts Arabic & Islamic Studies, The University of Chicago.

      Shariah Board Experience:

      Bank Muscat Meethaq (2013 – 2017)

      Sterling Bank Nigeria (Since 2013)

      University Bank, USA (Since 2006)

      Summary

      Abdulkader Thomas has over 35 years of diversified financial services experience in major markets. With a Master of Arts Law and Diplomacy from The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy and a BA in Arabic & Islamic Studies from The University of Chicago. His areas of activity have included trade finance, real estate finance, securities and alternative finance.

      As the general manager of a foreign bank branch in New York, he secured the first US regulatory approvals of Islamic mortgage and instalment credit/sale as banking instruments. Later, he secured US regulatory approval for profit sharing deposits. Abdulkader has been involved in the successful implementation of these products in the US market. With more than 17years Shariah Board Experience in Bank Muscat Meethaq, Sterling Bank Nigeria and University Bank USA, Abdulkader has worked on IFTA projects in Europe, Africa, Southeast Asia, and an authority on Islamic deal structures and securities.

      He also serves as a director of Alkhabeer Capital in Jeddah and Chairman of Alkhabeer (DIFC). He is a member of the international advisory board of the Securities Commission of Malaysia, a published author, and an active speaker on Islamic finance.