SQL – Why is it Important for Data Analysts?
Let's talk data. It's everywhere and it's been existing for a very long time. How long you ask? Well, SQL dates back almost 50 years now. In summary, back in 1970 Edgar Codd was working for IBM as a computer scientist. He wrote a paper describing a new system for organizing data in databases
. Cool, huh? By the end of the decade, several prototypes of Codd’s system had been built, and a query language — the Structured Query Language (SQL) — was born to interact with such databases.
Since then SQL has been progressing and became a norm for programmers who need to work with databases for decades.
OK, let's step back and explain what SQL actually is and stands for.
(Structured Query Language) is a standard database language that is used to create, maintain and retrieve relational databases. It is Pronounced as ‘ sequel ‘ or S-Q-L.
It is used to communicate with others. SQL is actually used for 3 things :
- to Write Data in a Database
- to Read/Retrieve Data – So Data is often stored in a Database.
- to Update and insert new data.
--- Below I will mention top 3 reasons why Data Analysts should use SQL ---
1. SQL is in Demand
According to the stats created by Josh Devlin
, the number of Data Analyst jobs with SQL as expertise is higher than Python, Hadoop etc. Josh analyzed 25,000 jobs advertised on Indeed, looking at key skills mentioned in job ads with ‘data’ in the title.
2. SQL Manages Huge Volumes of Data
With SQL, you do not have to worry when dealing with pools of data in relational databases. It can communicate, query and provide useful insights from the data.
Data science, in many circumstances, involves dealing with huge volumes of data stored in relational databases. Working with such huge volumes of data needs high-level solutions to manage it other than the usual spreadsheets. As the volumes of datasets increase, it becomes untenable to use spreadsheets. The best solution for dealing with huge datasets is SQL. SQL has the capacity to manage such datasets.
3. It's a Gateway to Programming
For those interested in learning programming, start by learning SQL. It is proven that it has a simple language structure, a free open source application, SQL is used in many businesses. Getting SQL under your belt will provide you with the mindset to grasp more intricate coding languages.
We are surrounded with SQL and you may not even know it! Did you know other popular business applications like Salesforce and also Microsoft Dynamics have SQL running in the background as their foundation? Now I have convinced you to learn SQL huh!