5 Ideas for Your Data Analyst Portfolio That Will Boost Your Chances

Do you know one of the most obvious ways to make or break a data analytics interview? The portfolio you present. An impressive data analyst portfolio is one of the most important parts of the job interviewing process. 

A great data analyst portfolio can score you your dream job! But a bad portfolio can stop you from gaining amazing opportunities in your field.

 If you’re looking for a job as a data analyst, a portfolio will help. Here are 5 ideas on how to build and present one.

Include the Right Kind of Data Projects in Your Portfolio

There are (at the minimum) three types of data projects you want to showcase in your portfolio. They are

  • Data scraping projects
  • Exploratory data analysis projects
  • Data visualization projects

Data scraping is the process of pulling data and turning it into usable data in an accessible format. While web scraping is the first step in all projects, a data scraping project is a project in which this step is highlighted, or is the star of the show. Here are some things to keep in mind when creating a data scraping project to put into your portfolio.

  • Pick the right tool to complete your web scraping, and make sure you show that you know how to use it well.
  • Before you begin scraping, make sure that you have permission to do so.
  • Choose an interesting idea that could be broadly useful for jobs you’ll be applying for.

The next project you’ll want in your portfolio is an EDA (exploratory data analysis) project. EDA is the process of creating summary statistics for data and then creating graphs used to better understand the data. So a project that highlights exploratory data analysis is a necessary part of your portfolio. 

Data visualization is all about communicating your findings. A good data visualization project should show that you are able to create effective visualizations. Again, although data visualization is a part of any project you should include a project that highlights your data visualization in particular. Here are some tips for putting together this project.

  • Remember, one size fits all isn’t true of data visualization. Carefully choosing the right format to best answer questions about your data is extremely important.
  • Don’t underestimate color. Clear color cues help tell a good story about your data.
  • Find your “goldilocks” of text. Too little text leaves out important details, and too much can be very distracting. 

Clearly Highlight the Services You Offer

Be clear and concise about your services. You need to figure out two key factors-

  • What you want to offer
  • Who you want to offer it to

If you’re a very well-rounded data analyst and a “jack of all trades” then make that clear in your portfolio. On the other side, if you have one specific skill or service (such as training or teaching) that you do better than everyone else, then make that extremely clear.

A big part of this is knowing your target audience. This is going to help you decide what skills and services you should be showcasing the most. Remember, it doesn’t matter if you focus on just a few niche skills or keep it very generalized. You just need to highlight what you are best at in a clear and concise way.

Don’t Leave Out Your Personality

Odds are, if you’re an aspiring (or current) data analyst, you are…

  • A team player
  • Assertive
  • Creative

That’s because being a data analyst requires all of these things! 

Creativity is heavily valued because finding creative, out-of-the-box ways to explore and present data is a necessity. Being assertive is necessary because you may find yourself having to defend your data quite often. Finally, being a team player is needed because much of the work you will do, will be done in teams!

That being said, you want these personality traits to shine through in your portfolio. You want them to know that you’re more than just the projects and that your personality will be a huge asset to their business or firm.

Make your Portfolio Presentable

Again, this may seem obvious, but it’s not! Many times people come forward with great content in their portfolio but it’s so unpresentable that no one can focus on how great the content is.

Focusing on the overall presentation is a step you can’t forget.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • What do I want others to do when they visit my portfolio?
  • How can I keep things straightforward, while still looking sleek?
  • How can I add personality to the presentation of my portfolio?

After you’ve answered these questions, don’t be afraid to play around and try some new designs or layouts. Odds are, you won’t fall in love with your first version of your portfolio and that’s totally okay! Just keep trying, until you find something that suits you and your style.

Include Testimonials

Some projects (no matter how good they may be) aren’t easily showcased in a portfolio. And sometimes, you may not have many projects to show! No worries, this is where testimonies come in. 

 Happy clients create more happy clients. Testimonies from a happy client can help build your profile just as much as an intriguing project might. Many customers rely on testimonials to choose which product or service they will purchase.

So how do you get a great testimony? Easy, just ask! As long as you have a good relationship with the client, it’s no problem at all to ask them to provide a testimonial for you. 

After you ask, make sure you…

  • Specify what part of the project you’d like them to speak on.
  • Ask for their permission to put their information in your portfolio.
  • Include a photo of the person who provided the quote.
  • Include their name, job title, and the business they work for in the portfolio.
  • Thank them for the kind recommendation!

Three or four testimonials can really build up your portfolio. It’s definitely something you should consider.

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