The Data Analytics Career Accelerator is a six-month programme designed by LSE faculty from the Departments of Methodology and Statistics. The programme aims to accelerate your career by teaching you fundamental data analytics competencies with immediate and long-term relevance in the digital economy. Eleonora Bacchi and Adrienn Szollosi have both taken the programme and shared their experiences in this Ask Me Anything webinar below.
Why did you decide to take the Data Analytics Career Accelerator?
Eleonora: “I’ve always had an interest in data, but I didn’t have the specific background and I found it really hard to find a job position in data analytics, so I said to myself “let’s make a strategic investment of time”. I wanted to reach a certain level of knowledge and I wanted it to be effective, I also wanted to build a network and have support. This course is very focussed on practical activities, and the support from FourthRev has been amazing in providing success managers and career coaches.”
Adrienn: “I have been working for quite some time and I have more than 15 years of data analysis experience. When I graduated, the tool we used for data analysis was mainly Excel, and since then I’ve seen that the technology has become more advanced so I felt the need to take a career break and take the time to learn these new technologies, which will help me to work with big data sets. I found this course to be very comprehensive and what I really needed to be a good data analyst in the current market.”
In terms of practical learning and relevant learning, how do you feel this programme will benefit you in terms of job outcomes?
Adrienn: “The technical, organisational, managerial experiences and knowledge will benefit me, I updated my resume and although I’m not actively looking for a job yet, on LinkedIn I get much more requests already, so I’ve really increased my employability which is the most important thing for me.”
Eleonora: “The career coaching tips have been helpful, there’s very useful career advice which is for everyone in the cohort – how to set up your LinkedIn profile, how to introduce yourself to people, and then you’ll have the 1:1 career coaching.”
How are you assessed in this programme?
Eleonora: “There aren’t any exams but at the end of every module there is a project which is evaluated. At the end there's an Employer Project where you’ll be assigned into a team with your peers, and you’ll choose a project from a real employer. The course is very practical so what I liked was that there was theory and interaction with LSE academics.”
What was the structure of our Employer Project, how did it work and who did you do it with?
Eleonora: “You’re assigned to a team with your peers and together with your team you choose which employer project you’re going to work on, and we chose a business problem – it was a very hands-on project with Zoomo – an automotive B2B and B2C company which gives long term rentals to delivery drivers, and they gave us data to help them build a feature in their app.”
Are learners expected to have prior experience with programming and the languages covered in the course?
Adrienn: “No you don’t. I had experience in Excel but I didn’t have any background in Python or R or Sequel, and I got good grades in them so it is really down to your commitment. Everything is really well explained – there are always written explanations of the topic as well as videos, so even without background knowledge you can get through the course.”
How does the course enable you to network with each other?
Adrienn: “After every course there is project and in between there are peer reviews and small group assignments. We also had a WhatsApp group and although I’m not based in London, a lot of my group were and I know they met up in person. There’s also a community centre where you can post any technical questions which is very helpful because the facilitators answer them.”
Do you have any top tips for people who are not sure if they should enrol or not?
Eleonora: “Don’t be afraid to ask questions, be strategic, you don’t need to know everything, but you need to keep the pace up, so when you’re stuck, just ask and they will help you.”
Webinar with Career Accelerator learners, Eleonora & Adrienn | LSE Data Analytics Career Accelerator