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16 data analyst interview questions and answers

This sample of Data analyst interview questions brings together the skills and qualifications you should look for in candidates and can help you choose the perfect fit for a data analysis position. Similar job titles include Database Manager.

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Data Analyst Interview Questions

These data analyst interview questions will help you identify candidates with technical expertise who can improve your company decision making process. You can use this set of questions to learn how your candidates will turn big data into information that will help you achieve your business goals.

What does a data analyst do?

Data analysts collect metrics from different data sources (e.g. financial data, sales figures and logistic costs) and analyze the results using statistical techniques. Their goal is to provide insightful reports to contribute to crucial organization decisions.

For this role, it’s important to track down professionals with excellent analytical skills and a problem-solving attitude. Your candidates may come from various academic backgrounds, like Mathematics, Economics or Computer Science. You should focus on technical skills and the level of experience your candidates have using database software and statistical analysis tools.


Operational questions

  • What are your daily duties as a Data analyst?
  • When you’re assigned with a data analysis project, how do you start and what process do you follow to analyze the given data?
  • What are your main focus points when designing a data-driven model to handle a business problem?
  • In which cases would you choose a simpler model over a more complex one?

Role-specific questions

  • What database software have you previously used?
  • Describe your experience using statistical analysis tools, like SPSS and SAS.
  • Describe the steps you would take to forecast quarterly sales trends. What specific models do you find the most appropriate in this case?
  • Do you have previous experience developing data mining algorithms and databases from scratch?
  • What is data cleansing? How do you know you have collected enough data to build a model?
  • How do you ensure accurate predictions using data correlation? Which are the most effective methods?
  • What experience have you had with managing large datasets?
  • Do you have experience presenting reports and findings directly to senior management?
  • What is a sensitivity analysis in the decision making process and how can you perform one in a given situation? Can you explain this using an example?

Behavioral questions

  • Have you ever delivered a cost reducing solution?
  • What’s the most difficult database problem you faced? How did you handle it?
  • How do you explain technical details to a non-technical audience?

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