• Power BI
  • Digital transformation

The Rising Star: Understanding the Role of Analytics Engineer 

By Paige MIllbank - 2023 Jul 24 4 mins read


The Rising Star: Understanding the Role of Analytics Engineer

analytics engineer

The realm of data has seen significant shifts in recent years. New roles have emerged, cutting-edge technologies have been embraced, and the relevance of data to business operations has been magnified. With these changes, the role of the Analytics Engineer has come to the fore. But what exactly is this role and what does it mean for the landscape of data in business?

The Evolution of Data

Over the decades, the field of data has morphed from simple collection and analysis to a sophisticated, multilayered system integral to business functions. It’s not that long ago that we started to see major shifts in the realm of data.

The invention of the modern database in the 1970s and the rise of SQL in the 80s marked the genesis of contemporary data science. As businesses gradually adopted a data-driven approach, the demand for efficient data storage led to the advent of data warehouses.

Now, as we look at the panorama of data, it’s clear that data roles have diversified. From data scientists and data analysts to machine learning engineers and data strategists, each role carries its own significance. In the midst of this broad spectrum, the analytics engineer stands out as a distinct role that uniquely bridges the technical and non-technical realms.

Birth of the Analytics Engineer

In essence, the analytics engineer emerged in response to two major shifts in the data landscape. Firstly, the development of massive parallel processing SQL data warehouses necessitated that analysts acquire SQL skills.

Secondly, the introduction of data pipeline services by companies like Stitch and Fivetran allowed analytics engineerdata engineers to delegate some of their responsibilities. This opened the door for the analytics engineer to step in and fill a unique niche.

What sets the analytics engineer apart is their capacity to act more like a software engineer while maintaining a deep understanding of how end data is used. At the intersection of the technical and non-technical, the analytics engineer works to make data warehouses more accessible and comprehensible for businesses. They leverage modern tools to streamline data engineering processes and create more models, documentation, and data monitoring tools.

analytics 2

Who are the Analytics Engineers?

Many analytics engineers evolve into their roles from related jobs in the data field, like data scientists and data analysts. It’s often those who are curious about the depths of data or those wanting to pivot towards the business side that are drawn to the role of analytics engineer.

As this role is relatively new, it’s not uncommon for people from diverse career backgrounds to successfully transition into it. For instance, individuals from consulting or civil engineering backgrounds have successfully made the shift.

As described by Claire Carroll in her blog, Get dbt, the analytics engineer’s role is akin to a curator, ensuring that researchers can do their work more effectively. It’s a supportive role that requires staying abreast of the latest tools in the data world and adapting to the rapidly evolving industry.

The analytics engineer role, therefore, attracts those who are comfortable with ambiguity and are continuously eager to learn.

What Skills Do Analytics Engineers Need?

With the right skillset, anyone can transition into an analytics engineer role. SQL stands at the top of this skillset, followed by a proficiency in programming languages like Python. Different businesses may prefer different languages, but SQL remains non-negotiable.

Beyond technical expertise, strong writing skills and effective communication are paramount. Analytics engineers need to translate complex data to various departments, so the ability to articulate clearly and coherently is a must. They also play a vital role in training others within the company to become self-sufficient with data, making strong communication even more critical.

Finally, analytics engineers need a solid understanding of best engineering practices and various data programs. They should be familiar with business intelligence tools, data warehouses, and data pipeline tools.

In summary, the role of the analytics engineer is an exciting addition to the data field. With the unique combination of technical and non-technical skills, they are becoming invaluable assets to companies navigating the fast-paced, ever-changing world of data. If the blend of data and business, tech and non-tech, intrigues you, then the analytics engineer role might be the perfect fit for you.

Find more tips & hacks on our Insights pages. Also, be sure to connect with me on LinkedIn.


Latest posts

  • Data
  • Data Management
2023 Dec 14 3 mins read
  • Data
  • Data Management
2023 Dec 7 2 mins read

Featured posts


  • baseone
  • Business
  • tips

Latest insights.

  • Data
  • Data Management
2023 Dec 14 3 mins read

Explore the transformative data analytics trends of 2023 that are reshaping businesses. Discover how augmented analytics, AI, real-time data, and more can drive your organization's success.

  • Data
  • Data Management
2023 Dec 7 2 mins read

Discover how Power BI's visualization tools can transform predictive analytics into actionable insights. Learn about interactive dashboards, custom visuals, and real-time data visualization in Power BI.

Our site uses cookies to distinguish you from other users of our site. This allows us to provide convenient viewing of our site, and also allows us to improve it. In order to continue working with the site, you need to accept the terms. Cookies policy

No thanks
Accept cookies