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Data Analysis - Conundrum

 
#1 Data Analysis - Conundrum
09/06/2007 10:08

anon

Please can someone advise me on the best approach for analysing large amounts of data.

Situation - I have been told that analysis exercise will last 1 hour and I will be expected to produce a report covering 3 issues/scenarios (I do not know what the issues/scenarios are) using the data provided. I do know that there are around 70 pages of data. So the challenge is 1 hour, 70 pages of data and 3 outline reports base on the issues/scenarios

My initial thought is to read the summary (assuming there is one) and produce the introduction, then tackle each issue separately. But with time being tight I was thinking of trying to use my own experience and use generic statements. Then if time allows try and find data to support the statements. I know this sounds back to front, hence the request for advice

Thanks in advance

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#2 RE: Data Analysis - Conundrum
09/06/2007 13:37

PeterG to anon (#1)

For data analysis: most important part is understanding the objective/business question. Once you have the grasp on BQ then break the data into blocks and see how they are fitting and just overlay what you understand from it. They will be looking at relevency as well as bit of creativity.

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#3 RE: Data Analysis - Conundrum
09/06/2007 17:49

Village Idiot to anon (#1)

Assuming this is for an interview / assessment (which it must be given the timescales), I would suggest that it doesn't matter what approach you take. It is more important that you have an approach than which approach you actually adopt.

I think the previous poster is correct. I would:

1. Focus on the business objective

2. Stay high-level, diving into the data only where absolutely required

3. Accept it is okay not to finish. What you should be able to do by the end of the hour is:

3a. Provide a high-level overview of what the data is telling you (and how that relates to the business objectives -- the "so what?" answer)

3b. Describe how you would continue analysing the data if you had more time available.

Get 3a + 3b right and you'll sail through the assessment.

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