There are many career pathways you can take with a degree in data science, one of which is as a data analytics manager.
A data analytics manager is responsible for the security and vitality of the databases that inform and drive their companies. They are the professionals who work diligently to ensure that every database under their supervision is monitored for anomalies and fixed as soon as a problem arises. They are familiar with business intelligence tools like SAS and Tableau to be efficient in their role.
In addition to the practical duties associated with protecting and maintaining information, data analytics managers are also responsible for analyzing data. They put teams of data analysts or data scientists together to work on complex data analytics projects, sorting through the vast amounts of information that can be gleaned from the data they collect.
Data analytics managers determine how to best use analyzed data to inform business decisions. In this regard, data analytics managers need to have a deep understanding of both data science and business practices. That is, they must be able to utilize the data they collect and analyze to help other stakeholders in their business or organization make informed decisions. Part of this is finding ways to easily and effectively communicate the meaning behind data to other stakeholders. There is, of course, much more to this career than these few job duties. In this job profile, we’ll explore many other facets of this job, including:
- educational requirements
- salary information
- job outlook
Educational Requirements for Data Analytics Managers
The first step in becoming a data analytics manager is to get an undergraduate degree in data science or a related field, like:
- computer science
- database management
- information technology
Regardless of the specific field you choose to pursue, you can expect to spend about four years getting your undergraduate degree, provided you study full-time.
Some prospective data analytics managers expand their learning opportunities further by adding a minor to their major. In this case, you might major in data science and minor in business.
Another option is to double-major. A popular double major is computer science and business management. This gives you all the more opportunity to learn valuable knowledge and skills that will assist you in carrying out the duties of data analytics management.
Choosing a Data Analytics Degree Program
When choosing a program of study, be sure you do your due diligence and pursue a degree from a college or university that’s regionally or nationally accredited. Employers don’t particularly care if you get your degree in person or online, but what they often require is that your degree is from an accredited institution.
Accreditation is important because regional and national accrediting bodies help set the standards of learning for collegiate programs. Schools are periodically evaluated to determine if they are meeting the required standards. This gives potential employers peace of mind that you are learning in a rich and supportive learning environment. While it might be tempting to save some money and get an online certificate or degree, if it isn’t from an accredited school, it might be a waste of time and money.
In many cases, data analytics managers begin their careers as a data analyst or developer. Because the field is still relatively new, professionals usually must work their way up through the ranks in order to earn employment at the administrative level.
Data analytics managers often work for around five years as analysts prior to advancing in their careers; this allows them time to understand the volatile nature of the work and also provides them opportunities to oversee projects while still at an entry-level position.
Earning a Master’s Degree Can Increase Job Opportunities
While there are many career opportunities in this field for bachelor’s level workers, you may find that additional job opportunities – especially those in the administrative or management levels – become available as you continue your education.
For example, you might pursue a master’s degree in data science or one of the related fields discussed earlier. Since master’s programs are much more specific in the scope of study than a bachelor’s program, they represent an ideal opportunity to gain advanced knowledge and skills in this field.
Many master’s degree programs include internship opportunities that place you in a real-world work environment to get on-the-job training. Internships might be a few weeks, a few months, or perhaps a full semester or year long. Throughout the experience, you would be supervised by an experienced data analytics manager (or perhaps a group of people) who can guide and direct the application of your classroom learning in a workplace setting.
Internship experiences not only boost your understanding of how to apply data analytics management principles, but they also give you invaluable work experience that you can use to find a data science manager job. Employers love applicants that have both knowledge and experience. With internship hours under your belt, you could very well stand out from other applicants and find yourself with a better chance of being hired for a data analytics manager role.
Data Analysis Certificate Programs
Certifications can also play a role in how employable (and how knowledgeable) you are. Additionally, data analysis managers that have certain certifications might be more likely to have added job-related responsibilities because of the additional training they have received.
There are a variety of certification options, including specialized certificates that focus solely on IT professionals and database administration (e.g., data analytics, data management, and database management and business intelligence) . Professionals may also find that taking on volunteer roles at a charity or NGO may give rise to new opportunities for them; this initiative is preferred among the most popular employers, such as Microsoft and Google.
Key Responsibilities of Data Analytics Managers
As noted earlier, data and analytic managers are first and foremost responsible for the management of all data that is incoming or outgoing from the company they have been hired to help.
An analytics manager job description may include responsibilities overlooking all data to search for anomalies that may be detrimental to analytical results. Data analytics managers communicate with other business leaders if they find an anomaly. They would work with the appropriate teams to rectify the situation as best as possible.
A data and analytics manager is responsible for analyzing and interpreting the data to ensure data integrity. In some cases, the data analytics job description may include making suggestions to the company’s leadership about changes to the software and hardware for upgrade purposes as well.
As a member of management, the data analytics manager is often involved in:
- hiring and firing processes
- overseeing a team of employees
- managing budgets
Necessary Skills to Become a Data Analytics Manager
Data managers are expected to have strong critical thinking and analytical skills. They must also be adept at organizing themselves and their employees, too.
These professionals should also have a great deal of experience with a variety of data visualization tools including:
Managers also use a variety of analytics tools to translate raw data and develop actionable business insights. These tools might include:
Experience with Big Data tools can also be part of the business analytics manager job description. Some of these might include:
The data analytics manager job description may require a manager to build and develop data models and analyze data. Data analytics managers are usually required to have superb interpersonal and communication skills. Strong written communication skills are also important to have. It is necessary for them to communicate with a variety of teams during the course of their work.
Lastly, these professionals must have excellent time management and decision-making skills. Much of their work must be decided in the moment and requires a great deal of confidence in their decisions. Data analysts in manager roles often work on multiple projects simultaneously.
Salary Potential for Data Analytics Managers
Payscale reports that the average annual entry-level data analyst manager salary is around $72,931. The pay band for entry-level workers is much broader, though – you might earn anywhere from $50,000 to $99,000 per year in your first job.
The average salary for this position and similar positions is currently estimated to be $98,860 per year, as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Again, the pay range is quite broad, with the lowest-paid workers making around $54,070 per year and the highest-paid workers making in excess of $155,000 per year.
Of course, where you fall on the pay scale depends on a wide range of factors.
- First, the more education you have, the higher the salary you can command. A graduate with a bachelor’s degree and no work experience can’t expect to earn more than a graduate with a master’s degree and no experience.
- Second, the more work experience you have, the more money you can expect to make. A fresh-out-of-college worker is not going to make as much money as a worker with similar educational credentials and ten years of work experience.
- A third factor that can affect the salary you might earn is the location of employment. If you’re a data analytics manager for a Fortune 500 company, the chances are good that your salary will be higher than a similar worker that’s employed by a small-town company with very few employees.
Rewards and Challenges
You might be asking yourself, “Is data analyst a stressful job?” As with any job, there are many rewards and challenges associated with this profession.
For example, data managers are paid good salaries and receive benefits from large companies; however, when starting out, the pay can be far less and benefits, such as healthcare, can be hard to come by.
Another reward is that there are a variety of opportunities from differing industries. Data science is a burgeoning field of work, so finding employment in an area that interests you might be much easier than it is in other lines of work.
A challenge of working in this field can be that data managers often must demonstrate prior work experience as a data analyst before being considered for an administrative position. This means you may well have to be patient and work your way up the ladder before being considered for a management-level position.
Data managers are also often in possession of sensitive material and customer data, so it can be a stressful occupation. Managers are responsible for the security of the databases under their supervision and a leak can cause significant harm to the company and its customers.
The field is also very competitive, leaving many managers to spend as much time learning new skills as they do on the job. It is a career that is best suited for people who:
- handle stress well
- can work long hours
- have a one-track focus on getting the job that’s in front of them done
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job growth for positions like this is predicted to be about eight percent through 2030. This makes the growth of the industry about as fast as average.
But, as discussed earlier, jobs are available in a wide range of industries, from e-commerce companies to international conglomerates to educational institutions to government agencies. Managers can find work in just about any field, provided their employer requires a need for a data analytics manager to oversee the transfer and interpretation of a large database.
Most managers work full-time, meaning that their position is integral to the operations of a company and therefore are in high demand. It is thought that demand for this position will grow exponentially over time, far past 2030. It is important that managers in this field obtain the required education and work experience in order to be efficient in their position within a company for years to come.
Data managers are incredibly important to the success and vitality of most companies. Their work helps guide many decision-making processes and can contribute positively to a company’s long-term goals. This is why this profession must be attended to by goal-oriented and observant people, which can make the business of managing a database that much easier for the companies that rely on those systems.
Data analytics managers are in high demand, with projections showing that the demand for these professionals will likely surpass the current supply of data analytics managers. As such, this is an attractive career if you have an interest in data management and analysis.
Remember that every job has its pros and cons, though. While there are many benefits of working in this field, there are some not-so-great elements as well. What’s important is that you continue learning about data analytics management, weigh the good and bad attributes of working in this field, and then go about getting the proper education to pursue your goals.
Updated: August 2022