Looking for Unicorns – One Reason It Is So Hard To Find Good Analytics Talent

When I look at job requirements for analytics jobs I generally find myself thinking, is this person recruiting from the same talent pool the rest of us are? Or do they really believe that the narrowly focused and hyper specific skill set they are looking for don’t really exist.

Often I am asked by HR and Recruitment professionals here in the Philippines to help them figure out how to bring more analytics into their talent acquisition process. Before going to deep, I generally review job requirements to see how realistic the requirements are.

You would be surprised how often the people doing the hiring have no idea how hard it will be to find candidates, let alone if they even exist.

For example, a Data Analysts with an advanced degree in analytics, 5+ years related experience, with knowledge in a wide range of specific coding languages (SQL and R) and business intelligence applications (Tableau and IBM Cognos), and who also know how to perform advanced predictive modeling. And willing to work in an office (Eastwood in QC), that is hard to get to during commute hours for a total compensation package that is way below market rates (45,000 PHP).

That’s a real posting I just pulled off jobstreet.com

Good Luck with that.


Seriously, recruiters are often tasked to find analytics professionals that in reality are few and far between. There are no degree programs in analytics. You need to know what related course work will potentially make a good analyst like statistics or computer science. This broadens your talent pool when you know what schools have been producing graduates who have the foundation of analytics when they leave school.

Work experience is a tough one to gauge based on titles. I have seen far more “analysts” who are just doing basic reporting then I have true analysts with the ability to discover patterns in business data and turn them into actionable insights. You need to dig deeper to find out what data they were working with, what tools they used to analyze it and how they presented it to decision-makers.

Knowing certain coding languages is a plus, but given few businesses have the exact same data structures, it will take as much adaptability as experience to be successful in your job. Same with BI tools, just because you know how to refresh and share a business dashboard in Tableau doesn’t mean you know how to build a new one from scratch. Having experience is important as it lessens ramp up time. But don’t be fooled that it gaurantees success.

Analysts are in super high demand right now. Getting them to work like a traditional office worker lessens their ability to optimize your business. They need space to be curious, autonomy to discover and flexibility to put energy into projects that make a significant difference. 9 to 5 office hours, chained to a desk, following all the controls in place for a traditional office staff member is a waste of a beautiful mind.

And when it comes to pay. Six figures is not as farfetched as it might sound.  If you are able to do a real cost analysis of what the analyst will save the company and/or new revenue they can help generate, they really are priceless.

SO before posting that job requirement, do a little analytic yourself to make sure you are not hunting for a unicorn.

Let me know if you need helping recruiting analytics talent. I can help you attract their attention and assure they will be successful once you get them.

General Analytics – Analytics is the application of using data and analysis to discover patterns in data. DMAIPH specializes in empowering and enabling leaders, managers, professionals and students with a mastery of analytics fundamentals.

To this end we have parterned with Ariva Events Management/Ariva Academy to offer a wide range of analytics themed trainings across the Philippines. Our next learning event will be on March 31 in Ortigas. It is called Data-Driven Decision-Making for Owners, Managers and Leaders. Click here to find out more >>>

Contact DMAIPH now at analytics@dmaiph.com or connect with me directly to find out what we can do to help you acquire the analytics mastery you and your organization need to be successful in today’s data-driven global marketplace.



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