These are two massive fields, but they tend to go hand in hand. The success of global titans such as Amazon, Tesla, Apple, Google, and the like is anchored on big data and data analytics. Big data is data on a very large scale such that it can only be gathered or processed with computers. This is especially with reference to its potential to allow for new breakthroughs or understanding in a particular field of study. Data analytics is essentially the field of data analysis, i.e. a systematic examination and evaluation of data and facts to uncover interrelationships. Those interrelationships will provide bases for solving problems and making decisions. In this article, I want to discuss the career and business prospects of big data and data analytics. To get an appreciation of why these fields are important, check out my article on using data analytics in retail businesses.
There are a number of career opportunities in big data analytics. Some of the top earners are:
Data Security Analysts
Business Intelligence Analysts
The beauty of these professions is that their skill sets are relevant to any industry. Some of the top fields for these skill sets are banking, technology, healthcare, consumer, energy, and manufacturing. The other dynamic is that few people have these skill sets. Especially here in Zimbabwe, there is a short supply of experts in big data analytics. You can leverage that because it means you will be of immense value. In developed countries, people with such skillsets earn 6-figure salaries annually.
In Zimbabwe, many companies or organizations are yet to discover the power of big data. That in itself presents career opportunities because such entities will wake up soon. Big data analytics is instrumental in helping entities with predictive and operational functions. It is also essential to distinguishing an entity’s customer relationship management. Overall it plays a big role in making empirical strategic decisions. I have seen some job postings pertaining to some of the aforementioned professions in Zimbabwe from time to time. I am confident it is gradually getting to a point where it will become mainstream.
There are business opportunities for those already running businesses. Remember the predictive element; that will enable businesses to forecast into the future. Arguably the biggest opportunity lies in better understanding your customers. You can have comprehensive insight into their buying patterns and several data points on how they behave. This will help you come up with specialized strategies to cater to your different customer types. You can discover new market opportunities or loopholes to capitalize on. You will also be better equipped to handle multiple projects at once. The culmination it all is that you will be able to boost your sales and profit more. That is the first layer of business opportunities, i.e. for pre-existing businesses.
Then there are a number of business ideas that you can explore. That is the second layer, and here are some examples:
Digital Marketing Services
One of the topmost ones is starting a Digital Marketing Agency. At the most basic, you can start offering digital marketing services. In Zimbabwe, this is highly needed because most people and entities know little about digital marketing. Digital marketing is broad and, as such, provides limitless opportunities.
I have often lamented the lack of current and detailed data on Zimbabwean issues. You can start a Research Firm where you can even delve into data mining as well. Data mining is a technique for searching large-scale databases for patterns. This is particularly used in finding interrelationships between variables wielding commercial value. As a Research Firm, you can even handle government contracts. Once wrote an article on what you need to know about starting a think tank in Zimbabwe. That article can inspire you to put together a research firm.
You can also start a Consultancy Services business depending on your area(s) of expertise in big data and data analytics. This has the potential to bring in lots of money with minimal effort on your part. Let us suppose you are a Business Analyst. You can be hired to work on projects in any industry.
Evidently, there is still a need for people in Zimbabwe to be educated on the subject. That can be a basis for getting into content creation, e.g. starting a blog or YouTube channel. You can stretch the content creation to provide online courses. I am sure that will feed off the high likelihood of people wanting to acquire skills properly. You can even develop a platform that offers adaptive learning in providing online courses.
Business Intelligence is such a big deal to brands these days. Business Intelligence is the application of certain processes or the use of certain tools to draw insights from raw data. You will become highly sought after by equipping yourself with expertise in big data and data analytics. In Zimbabwe, these areas are steadily picking up momentum. Not only will you be of immense value in Zimbabwe but globally as well. Data Analytics is amongst the top most sought-after skill sets in the world right now. If you want to know how to start building your skillset, read this article I wrote on 7 essential skills needed in Data Science. You can also read another one I did on data analytics tools to learn and use in 2022.