Data Warehouse Consultant is one of the most tempting jobs with a big paycheck around $42.0 an hour – that’s $87,367 a year. The job growth is also good with 9 percent growth between 2018 and 2028 with 10,500 job opportunities available, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labour Statistics. While the job offers many benefits, working as a data warehouse consultant also comes with big responsibilities. There are some skills that many Data Warehouse Consultants should have in order to do their job. According to experts, below are the mandatory skills warehouse consultants should have:
1- Broad vision
Even a data warehousing consultant who’s an expert in a particular area should have a broad vision in at least these areas:
- Overall end-to-end data warehousing architecture, from tools to middleware to data quality to an orchestration software
- An understanding of client/server, Web-based, and server-side computing architectures
- A firm understanding of database optimization concepts for tuning data access queries
- Skills in digging through data sources to see what’s really there
The components of a data warehousing environment are interrelated, thus a consultant must be able to not only provide technical expertise in one or two areas of a project but also see the big picture.
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2- Deep technical expertise in one or two areas
A consultant should be able to claim, proudly and accurately, to be the best in one or two areas, such as database design and front-end tools.
3- Communications skills
A consultant’s written and verbal grammar doesn’t have to be perfect, yet the most technically astute consultant must be able to convey ideas and understand what others are communicating. It’s critical!
4- The ability to analyze data sources
A consultant should never design necessary transformations for a data warehouse solely by using listings of data structures and definitions provided by the keepers of an application or the IT department. A consultant must be able to dig into source databases, even if this source analysis is only a secondary role for the consultant.
For example, a consultant who isn’t the primary source-data analyst might have to figure out why the business intelligence tool returns strange results.
5- The ability to distinguish between requirements and wishes
A consultant’s ability to distinguish between user requirements and wishes is important primarily in working on the scope of a data warehousing project. During crunch time, good facilitation and negotiation skills are essential when functionality has to be cut from the list – or, at least, deferred until the next version of the data warehouse.
6- Conflict-resolution skills
No matter what role a consultant plays, from project manager to data analyst to quality assurance (QA) specialist, he might be an outsider to the members of an organization – and someone from the client company is almost always resented because of the outsider’s “intrusion.”
A consultant on a data warehousing project (or any other project, for that matter) must identify these situations early and do the best possible job of diffusing any conflict that threatens to destroy a project.
7- An early-warning system
A consultant should act as an early-warning system to identify and report problems to their client, so that the client can deal with them. The consultant shouldn’t be a snitch, but he or she should be more than just a nose-to-the-grindstone technician.
8- General systems and application development knowledge
While data warehousing and mainstream computing continue to converge, an increasing number of warehouses will be built using distributed objects, the use of messaging and other data-movement technologies for near-real-time business intelligence will increase; and a lot of other capabilities that weren’t part of a typical first-generation data warehousing environment will develop.
A consultant who has strong skills should have at least a working knowledge of these areas, in addition to basic programming skills and other abilities
9- The know-how to find up-to-date information
From data warehousing product bug fixes to information about the latest architectural trends, a good consultant knows how to find up-to-date information quickly – in time to be put to good use on a data warehousing project.
10- A hype-free vocabulary
Because it’s almost impossible to avoid catchy buzzwords in the data warehousing world, don’t hold it against a consultant (or anyone else) who uses these phrases. But be generally wary of consultants who sound like they went to a trade show and met up with data warehousing pod people, such as “Don’t be afraid. Join us for some neural network data mining that uses subject-oriented data to give you predictive pattern recognition built by using data vaulting techniques in SSAS (Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services) and SSIS (Microsoft SQL Server Integration Services) — we are your friends!” These kinds of consultants are usually exaggerating their skills without any better proof.
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