Also known as reporting analyst or data analyst, this career requires professionals with superior analytical and communication skills. Database reporting analysts mine data results, write queries to pull source data and write procedures that automatically process data to generate reports in Structured Query Language (SQL) databases.
They also create reports for nontechnical employees and management, typically using tools such as Reporting Services (SSRS), and provide data reporting support on research and analytics for companies in various industries.
Although job duties will vary depending on the specific title and industry, database (DB) reporting analysts are primarily responsible for storing and managing data, creating reports, analyzing reports and sharing findings. They analyze complex data systems and document data elements and flow, and relationships and dependencies.
DB reporting analysts utilize software to generate metrics related to critical information, such as performance, variance and analyses for strategic, operational and resource allocation decisions and actions. These reports, which can be standard or ad-hoc, typically contain graphs and data visualizations, so analysts need to be creative in displaying patterns and trends in the most effective way.
Database reporting analysts are relied upon to provide managers and various departments with accurate and relevant explanations of their findings. They also translate reporting inquiries and requests to specific action items for programmers and analysts, and evaluate data to respond to inquiries in a timely and precise manner.
These professionals may be responsible for ad-hoc SQL queries, ad-hoc Business Intelligence (BI) tool queries, BI tool models and dashboards, data consolidation and analysis, and collaboration with different teams to achieve business goals. They also may develop automated and reusable routines for extracting requested information from database systems.
The era of interconnectedness known as the Internet of Things is generating volumes of real-time data. That is helping create a hiring environment for data analysts and other qualified professionals who can interpret this big data in order to inform and support business decisions and organizational goals.
The 2015 Salary Guide by Robert Half Technology, a global IT staffing firm, noted firms across industries are seeking “specialized talent” in big data as supply continues to lag demand. The Robert Half guide reported starting salary ranges of $70,750 to $108,250 for data analysts and $108,500 to $154,000 for Business Intelligence analysts.
It’s important to note that salary potential and employment opportunities are dictated by multiple factors, including a candidate’s work history and educational qualifications, as well as industry type and local market conditions.
Database reporting analysts typically need a bachelor’s degree in Computer Information Systems or a related field for entry-level positions. With experience, professionals can seek SQL Server and/or BI certifications to strengthen their knowledge base. DB analysts who hope to attain higher-level responsibilities or senior titles can pursue a Master of Science in Information Technology with a concentration in Database Administration.
Database reporting analysts require a combination of technical and soft skills to be successful. Generally, they are expected to be proficient with programs and tools such as Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft Reporting Services Tools, as well as Business Intelligence solutions such as Tableau or Sisense
Analysts should be critical-thinkers who enjoy finding new ways to solve problems, and have strong writing and presentation skills, as they must communicate their results and recommendations to various employee levels, including non-technical colleagues and senior executives.
Database reporting analysts have the opportunity to apply their analytical, communication, technical and interpersonal skills to support the success of organizations within the public and private sectors, as well as nonprofit and educational institutions.
While a bachelor’s degree can be a stepping stone to this career, an MSIT in Database Administration can bring enhanced professional knowledge and greater opportunity for advancement.