Budget constraints are the nemesis of people everywhere. But tight funds don’t mean you have to forego much-needed analytics training to boost your career.
The trick is finding ways to have your cake and eat it, too, through quality, proven training that’s affordable. And the good news is it’s possible.
If you are an individual looking to add analytics to your toolkit, here is how you can do so cost effectively, without breaking your bank and within your own budget.
Test your aptitude first:
I recently talked to an analyst who didn’t score very well on our aptitude test (12 out of a possible 24 points). He wanted to know how our courses could help him. I asked him if he was enjoying his job and he wasn’t. By the time our conversation ended 15 minutes later, I think I convinced him to follow his heart and do something other than analytics. Before you spend your calories and brain cells on this skill upgrade, make sure it is your thing. Test your aptitude here for free. Then, if you have the aptitude, you’ll not only excel at analytics training, you’ll enjoy your career.
Start with free or nearly free options:
Learn the space. Do some reading—books, articles, and blogs; there’s plenty out there to help you do your homework. The book, Behind Every Good Decision, is a great starting place for understanding the analytics space at the 30,000-foot level, as well as diving into the 4 most common analytics methodologies, hands-on. It is available in most libraries. If you are looking to transition to an analytics career, the book, Acing Your Analytics Career Transition, lays out the entire process for you and is priced at a very affordable $3.99.
Seek out hands-on learning at an affordable cost:
Once you have established you have the aptitude and you understand the space and the process, start investigating your options for hands-on training. Many course options exist and are offered by many providers, including my company Aryng, Coursera, Lynda, Udemy, and Udacity, to name a few. Shop wisely and understand what elements are and are not part of the course. Our students tell us they chose us over other options because we teach the entire process of analytics as applied to solve business problems, followed by a real-time project with one of our clients and direct access to analytics experts.
Ask about resources to lower your cost even more:
You may not need to bear the costs of even an affordable program on your own. Check with your manager/HR department to see if your company training budget and/or offers reimbursement options for job-related education. It’s a benefit that can often go unused just because employees fail to ask. Also be aware that Aryng offers merit-based scholarships to make our training very inexpensive—another potential avenue to lower your direct costs. Finally, talk to your tax advisor about the possibility of taking a tax deduction for your education expenses.
Most important, though, don’t forget to enjoy your journey as you empower yourself with skills that will serve you both professionally and personally. Data-driven thinking is becoming table stakes, akin to communication and project management skill. Be ready!
DISCLAIMER: This article expresses my own ideas and opinions. Any information I have shared are from sources that I believe to be reliable and accurate. I did not receive any financial compensation in writing this post, nor do I own any shares in any company I’ve mentioned. I encourage any reader to do their own diligent research first before making any investment decisions.
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