Five Key Skills You May Not Think to Look for When Hiring a Business Intelligence Specialist

You’ve drafted and redrafted that job advertisement for a new Business Intelligence specialist and you’re finally convinced you’ve got it just right.

After all, it asks for everything you’re sure you need when recruiting a professional to help you make the most of your data and start reaping a return on your BI investment. 

You’ve asked for industry experience, knowledge of the hardware and software used by your organisation, and even the ability to turn analysis into impressive reports.

So far, so good, right?

Isn’t it now just a case of getting that ad out to the public and kickstarting your recruitment process? 

Not necessarily.

Before you do, have one last review of your selection criteria and ask yourself whether you’ve included these five key skills that many companies don’t always think to look for when hiring a Business Intelligence Specialist. 

Excellent Communication

It’s vital that communication skills go above and beyond being able to speak confidently and write clear, concise documents.

A Business Intelligence specialist can be the most confident and charismatic speaker in the world, but if what they’re saying simply washes over those they’re speaking to, it’s pretty much a wasted effort. 

What’s really important here then, is the ability to ‘translate’ complex BI into relatable terms and explain how what they’re doing fits into the overall aims and objectives of the company at large. 

Customer Service 

Closely tied in with communication skills, this is a particularly essential skill for those in BI analyses, where responding to user requests forms a large part of the day-to-day work. 

Business Development 

The best BI professionals currently working today have some knowledge and experience in business development roles, and if you’re to get the most from your new recruit, it’s worth hiring someone who can stand with one foot in the technical realm and the other firmly in development.

Again, this is about your new hire having a clear understanding of why they’re doing what they’re doing, and being able to demonstrate how your investment in BI is paying off. 

An Eye for Innovation 

Radical wheel-reinventors may not be what you’re looking for, but enthusiasm for keeping abreast of the latest innovations and industry trends should be.

Despite becoming increasingly prevalent, BI, as we know it today, is still in its infancy and is still evolving, with new applications and hardware continuing to hit the market. 

Effective Decision Making 

Of course, simply knowing what’s out there is rarely enough.

The ability to assess new innovations, applications and methods of working, and make an informed decision about whether they should be adopted is just as vital.

That’s not the only time your new BI hire should find an ability to make effective decisions proves invaluable.

Playing a vital role in everything from prioritising workloads to responding to user requests and creating reports, the ability to make the right decisions at the right time is perhaps second only to clear, effective communication when it comes to the essential ‘soft’ skills you should be looking for when recruiting a new Business Intelligence specialist.

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