I have a background in web programming, PHP in particular, and am recently completing my MPhil in Computer Science with a research focus on the use of decision trees and granular computing in predicting deficiencies in Nursing Home. I mostly use SPSS, Java and Weka data mining environment.
As I am graduating soon, I am thinking of applying my skills in data analysis and research because it is cool. But I am not sure how to proceed. In particular I am concerned about the following:
1) Which softwares to learn? There are different softwares out there such as SAS, SPSS and so one?
2) How,in general, would employers define a good data analyst: ability to communicate, research, bring forth new ideas, the number of certifications or the use of softwares?
3) While working as a data analyst what challenges can one face from day to day?
4) In general what advice would you give to a person aspiring to use data analysis in the welfare of the society?
I really appreciate all input. Thanks again for your time and effort.