Data analysis is not only for business manager / programmer/ scientist
This post will repeat a bit the one about web analytics vs data analytics (you can read it here) but it is still a bit different.
I will focus more on how different profile complete each other so much and why is so good to have them all in one place (ie : in the Web Analytics Business Unit 😉 ).
There are 3 main web analytics profiles :
- The Programmer : the one that implement things to retrieve data
- The Scientist : the one that understand correlation about the data
- The Business Manager : The one that makes sense of the data
I will cover each one of them and explain how they interact with each other.
Advantages of a Programmer
The programmer is the one that is the most problematic to replace if they are not part of the team. However this statement make them believe that they are the most important part of team. True it is harder to do advanced analytics without them but not impossible and the other team member have also their own knowledge.
The developer is truly important as he is the only one that know HOW exactly the data is retrieved in the system. He can make the impossible possible and if curious enough, can really push the implementation to grab data that you didn’t even think possible to have.
Advantages of a Scientist / Data Analyst
The Scientist / Data Analyst is very close to the Programmer, they often know a programming language (R / Python) or Data base language (SQL). That is the reason why I put them together. Some may say that they don’t have the same profile but I really feel that the market is really joining those 2 profiles. The Data Analyst really get better on learning mathematical knowledge and the scientist get better on knowing the data themselves and how they are processed in the system they are using.
This is one of the reason that they are very valuable for the developer, as they know how the data are processed in the system and get the correlation between the different data points. On top of that, they can work on them and identify causation with their statistical models and get close to insights and discoveries that will help the business manager.
Advantages of a Business Manger
The Business manager is often look with very skeptical view from the 2 others individuals. This guy cannot code, it doesn’t know how the tool(s) work and … he speaks a bit too much ;).
Actually the Business Managers can suffer from their lack of technical knowledge but when the Business Manager is good, he, and only him, knows what to do with that insights that were retrieved from the Programmer work and processed by the Data Analyst. For sure, if the others individuals are a bit curious they have ideas of what to do with those data but the Business Manager can put them in a better overall context for the company and he will know what to do first and last.
Their lack of technical is not a problem as they are not supposed to know how things are done. If the Programmer and the Analyst are doing things correctly, he doesn’t have to know. He takes the insights as they are and drive business with them. Of course, it is better to have a Business Manager that know a bit of everything (and the same with the Programmer and Analyst) but during my previous experience I saw so many Business Manager loosing their business view as they were digging their technical knowledge.
My advice is that you should know your role and try to improve it. Do not try to be someone that you are not supposed to be. For sure, if you can listen to the others and improve a bit, it is nice and encouraged.
One of the key issue between those 3 different individual is obviously the communication.
As you can imagine, speaking of an instance with the Business Manager may be quite tough as well as CPO to a Programmer. Everyone has to realize some effort and find a common ground.
The most important rules is just to not assume that everything that makes sense to you is making sense for everyone in the room. Especially with these 3 persons are in the room. 🙂