Today we’re going to be talking about the keys to an effective analytics portfolio. There are two main things that you need to get across with your portfolio.
Number one: you need to show that you know how to solve a business problem using data.
Number two: demonstrate your technical skills with relevant tools. Having a project in your portfolio that shows you can solve a business problem using tools that are relevant to the role you’re applying to can set you apart from other applicants.
For example if you are applying for a tableau job that requires building dashboards you should build out a tableau public portfolio solving a problem with data that you have access to. If you can find data that is relevant to the industry or position you are applying to it will set you apart further as an applicant. If you’re going for a marketing position then a portfolio with marketing data would be great to include.
Now you may be someone that is just starting out with data analysis and doesn’t know where to start. Whether you’re a mid-level professional or just starting out as entry-level you should really take advantage of tableau public. Tableau public has great options for someone starting out their portfolio. Tableau public lets you host your profile for free and allows you to download other users’ visualizations along with the data for your own visualizations. This is one effective way to get data for your own projects. However if you have the data you don’t always know what to do with it and if you feel completely lost then taking a data analytics course is a great idea. The Silvertone analytics learning platform for example provides data for analysis and then guides you through the analysis process to create dashboards of your own. Taking courses is a good way to start your portfolio.
Tableau public is not the only platform to use for a portfolio. Another option is creating your own website, you can include background information about yourself and also create links to your tableau projects. If you wanted to include a project created using Power BI you could screenshot or record your analysis and include it in your website. Getting back to the actual
value of a portfolio if you’re being interviewed and you can check all the boxes, in theory you could just be lying about your capabilities. However, if you can show them your skills through a portfolio it goes a long way in giving you credibility.
A portfolio can also serve as an engine for opportunities, in the ‘How to Get an Analytics Job’ podcast we’ve interviewed Michael Gallarnick, who gets about 250,000 hits on his data science blog and he now has more opportunities coming to him than he could ever actually capitalize within a lifetime. For someone out there who’s wanting to go into more of the consulting route or start their own business a portfolio can be something that advertises your abilities and you can post it publicly and get some recognition for that and then show it to a client with that recognition. For example we had another guest on the podcast who we helped land their first analytics job, he built a tableau public portfolio analyzing fantasy football data. He took something he was genuinely interested in and passionate about to analyze and it helped get him a job. This is an excellent way of building a portfolio, if you can find a project you’re passionate about to start out your portfolio it can make a difference.
When building out your portfolio it can also be helpful to show your progression as an analyst.
Perhaps the first one or two portfolio pieces aren’t that great but the more you analyze you start to show improvement and that’s a way that you can communicate your ability to learn and improve at a task.
We hope these tips have been helpful for you to work on your portfolios. Feel free to drop links to your portfolios below, we would love to see your work!