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What Is Data Engineer, Its Duties, Skills, & Responsibilities?

Today, data-related professions are in high demand. Because, many companies want to take advantage of data in order to survive in their respective industries.

One profession that is quite popular in the data field is a data engineer. Generally, this profession works closely with data analysts and data scientists.

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Then, why is this profession tempting? Besides being sought after, this profession also has a relatively high salary. Based on Indeed’s research, the average data engineer salary in US can reach $115,157 per year! (When this post’s published).

Are you interested in becoming a data engineer? Don’t worry, because here we will both see their duties and responsibilities. In addition, you will also know what skills you need to master.

Without further ado, let’s get started!

What is a Data Engineer?

Data engineer is a profession whose job is to design and build systems that will later be used to collect and analyze data.


Generally, the data collected and managed will be further interpreted by data analysts and data scientists.

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The end goal is to present useful information for the business. Thus, the management can make reliable and data-based decisions.

What is a Data Engineer?
What is a Data Engineer?

Well, even though they work side by side, there are still many who don’t understand the difference between a data engineer, data analyst, and data scientist. In fact, all three have different functions:

Data Engineer Data Analyst Data Scientist
– Prepare the infrastructure needed to collect data.
– Develop, maintain and test data architecture.
– Researching data using data analysis tools.
– Interpret data and identify trends based on existing patterns.
– Analyzing complex data
– Optimizing data collection, analysis, and interpretation techniques.

OK, now you know the difference. But what exactly is the job of a data engineer? To know the details, let’s see in the next section!

Understand the Duties and Responsibilities

So, what needs to be prepared to start the profession as a data engineer that the company needs? Here are some tips and tricks to become a successful data expert.

1. Collecting and Processing Data

First, the responsibility that must be carried out is to collect data and develop the required interface requirements from various source findings. To retrieve data, care must be taken so that there are no technical problems that can damage or interfere with the running of a system program process.

The important point here is that you must have accuracy and cluster various existing information because there is some unstructured data. You can also use various tools or special programming languages ​​to help simplify the data processing process.

2. Clear Data

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Second, a data engineer must be able to clean the data after it is combined, then be able to look for anomalies in the information. What is an anomaly? Is a process in the database that produces a side effect that is not expected by the data engineer.

This is usually caused by the table structure that combines data that is still dirty and invalid because it still contains a null value. So it needs a method or special treatment to be able to overcome this, which must have expertise in making good decisions.

3. Develop Data Warehouse Architecture

The last task is to design the architectural structure of the data warehouse that has been successfully analyzed. In which, various data that have been cleaned will be entered into the data warehouse. After that, you simply design the data storage flow in the software by defining the model structure using DFD (Data Flow Diagram), ERD (Entity Relationship Diagram), and other architectures.

What are the Duties of a Data Engineer?

If explained in full, the task is actually quite broad. However, they basically have to deal with the following:

  • Build and test data architecture.
  • Exploring data relevant to the company’s needs .
  • Develop algorithms that can turn data into useful information .
  • Build more effective data validation methods and data analysis tools .
  • Cooperate with management to utilize the information available for business purposes .

Of course, the tasks at hand can vary. It depends on the scale of the business and the industry.

For example, data engineers working in large-scale companies will need to build algorithms and data architectures that are much more complex than those working in small companies.

Then, what are the skills that a data engineer must master? Let’s see one by one!

What are the Duties of a Data Engineer?
What are the Duties of a Data Engineer?

Also read: Data Analysis Techniques: Objectives, Methods and Analysis Procedures

5+ Skills that Data Engineers Need to Master

As explained above, this profession will have a lot to do with systems and data architecture. Therefore, here are some skills that you must master:

  1. Programming languages ​​– In practice, there are several important programming languages ​​that data engineers often use. Examples such as SQLJavaR and Python.
  2. ETL system ( Extract, Transfer, and Load ) – You also need to learn the ETL system to be able to move data from one database to another. Some of the tools that are often used in the application of ETL systems are Stitch and Xplenti.
  3. Data storage – Not all data is stored the same way. Especially if the data being managed is complex. In this case, you need to understand well about data types and data structures.
  4. Machine Learning – Through this skill, you will understand how to develop algorithms and use artificial intelligence. Even though this skill goes into the realm of data scientists, at least you understand the basics too.
  5. Cloud computing – Nowadays, data storage is not only done on physical servers, but also cloud servers. That’s why you have to understand how cloud storage and cloud computing work.
  6. Data Processing Tools – By mastering data processing tools like Apache Hadoop, you can take advantage of the network to solve problems related to data computing.

Also read: What is Data Mining? Here’s the Definition and Examples of Practice!

Ready to Become a Data Engineer?

How? Are you increasingly interested in a career as a data engineer?

There’s a lot you can learn. For starters, you can learn programming languages ​​first.

And if you want to know more about data science, look no further, because Coursera has what you need!

Coursera provides data science classes for beginners. So, you can master data science in an easy-to-understand language. In addition, you will also learn how to visualize data to make communication easier. Complete, right?

So what are you waiting for? Let’s click the banner below to master data science right now!

Main Conclusion

To become a professional data engineer, you need to learn several programming languages ​​that are widely used for the needs of database structure analysis, and have critical thinking to be able to solve problems well.

In addition, it also has a solution idea to be able to provide a design to solve problems effectively and efficiently.

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Muhamad Nagib
Muhamad Nagib
Information technology writer who has great interest in Windows, MacOS and Linux-based computers as well as Android and iOS smart devices, therefore this website is dedicated to reviewing all information about these operating systems and devices. Learn more.


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