The explosion of technology in today’s world has given permission to the growing rise in questions about data, and its significance to modern-day humans. Data in this context is not entirely limited to your current internet subscription, but it relates to units of information collected through observation. Simply put, data is information.
Data is very important in the contemporary business scenario as it not only borders on facts and numbers but is crucial in making important business decisions and future predictions that drive the growth and success of a business. The role of Analytics in this regard is paramount to understanding just exactly how data works.
Data Aside, What is Analytics?
Analytics here is seen as a tool that decision-makers leverage to make better decisions. This is because the decisions are being made based on evidence and not just assumptions or gut feelings. Basically regarded as “evidence-based decision making”. Analytics is used to mine through data, learn from customer information coming into the organization, considering the behaviors, patterns, and trends to guide business decision making. It is important for better business outcomes because it helps in reducing risks by making use of knowledge gathered from data.
The Business Data Analyst
Business data analysts are professionals with a unique role to play in an organization as they place emphasis on the business aspect of analytics, as well as the data aspect of analytics. In this regard, it is easier to imagine the business data analyst as a superhero with long stretchy arms acting as a bridge between the technology domain and the business domain of an organization. This is possible because the business data analyst essentially embodies the role of the business analyst in the data analytics and information technology sphere.
A business data analyst is in charge of analyzing the business, putting into consideration the organizational processes, evaluating the business models, and suggesting technological changes. It is possible to imagine the business data analyst as one who offers translation services for the business and the technical team.
This brings us to the question of the relationship between business data analytics and business analysis. Essentially, the underlying question here is, what is the business of the business analyst in this space?
To have a clear understanding of the role of the business analyst here, it is imperative that we look at the definition of business analysis from the IIBA’s Business Analysis Body of Knowledge (BABOK)
Business Analysis is the practice of enabling change in an organizational context, by defining needs and recommending solutions that deliver value to stakeholders.
Therefore, the role of the business analyst in business data analytics has to do with upfront analysis before software development work occurs in an I.T project, or before the data scientist works on an analytics project.
What this essentially means is that we cannot jump into creating math models and crunching data. We have to understand the problems and opportunities the business is struggling with, analyze the current state, define the future state, and understand those business questions that drive analytics.
The role of the business data analyst would then be about writing the narrative in an analytics project once the data is crunched, so as to provide visualizations and explain business decisions that are viable back to the business. Sounds pretty sweet if you think about it. It is like providing insights on how to maximize the potential of a chess piece on the chessboard depending on the line of attack.
Business data analysis is really about the type of project or initiative – be it work on an I.T project, process improvement, or business analytics. So, we’re not saying business analysts or data scientists in this regard, but what we are saying is business data analytics is there to give support to these projects.
At this point, it is becoming obvious that business data analytics plays a very important role in the overall growth and expansion of a business especially in the contemporary business landscape. However, this is just a scratch on the surface as the role of a business data analyst is multi-dimensional, and it cuts across various aspects of a business.
Let us now take a look at some of the opportunities for Business Analyst professionals in the Business Data Analytics space.
Bridging The Gap
We already highlighted how the business data analyst acts as a bridge between the IT and business teams. Here, the soft skill aspect is seen as the analyst plays the role of speaking between the business and the technical team. Being able to bring that technical result back and communicate them in business language and domain.
As a result of the explosion of technology, the business data analyst is able to process large sets of data that organizations are collecting and mining. There wasn’t the technology to do this in the past, but in recent times, because of how the world is going digital, business data analysts are getting the ability to work with data that our older technologies didn’t allow. This has led to the rise in demand for business data analysts today.
This has to do with upfront analysis, defining the architecture of the work, and making sure that the work that is being done aligns with the organizational strategy.
The Business analyst in this regard shows relevance to data analytics as the business data analyst is able to understand the voice of the customer, empathize with it, and bring that back to the analytics team thereby solving problems that matter in the business.
Conclusively, it is no longer an assumption but a fact that the world is already in the modern digital era. The digital world has taken over, and the struggle for data further suggests how important and powerful it is in today’s world.
The data analyst role will become requisite because business decisions would become fully data enabled and the cyborgs that would take full advantage would be the business analysts in business data analytics.
I don’t want to go full data robot on you guys but I hope you get the gist. Upgrade and validate your expertise in data analytics by signing up with BNET Learning to get your Certification in Business Data Analytics (CBDA).
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