#151: The Rise of the Analytics Engineer with Claire Carroll

October 6, 2020

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One comment on “#151: The Rise of the Analytics Engineer with Claire Carroll

  1. Greetings from the Big Smoke across the pond!

    The discussion half-way through the podcast about automation really resonated with me. Early on with my career, I was working in a call centre and during the night shifts, we had to produce manual reports from the calls our colleagues received during the day. I bought Excel VBA for Dummies and automated the whole thing. It took a few minutes instead of hours. And then I added new features to these reports. That got me, a linguist and aspiring web developer, a seat on the database team of that call centre as a junior PL/SQL developer. I chased the same opportunities through my career, I saw some career progression, but only by staying 2 years in each role max. Then I had an epiphany: managers’ depends on the size of their teams. If you like automation, don’t do what I did, keep really quiet about it instead because getting your promoted for it is rare. Try to make a case for hiring a junior guy or gal to report to you and your manager will love you.

    Regarding the data translator, I am not a fan but some have claimed success with it. I see these roles as a way for stakeholders to get the benefits of data literacy without investing any effort into it. Then they get promoted and the data translator sees no career progression. In the UK, subject matter experts are rarely promoted, too, so this sends a clear message to the rest of the staff: try your hardest not to be perceived as SME or someone with SME-leanings. The data translator is an SME role in my view, investing time to become data literate will cast you as an aspiring SME. If companies are serious about making data-informed decisions they should stop hiring CDOs with great fanfare and fire them quietly 3 months later, and promote their data SMEs.


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