Northeastern University's Decision Support Office (UDS) is seeking a Data Engineer and Analyst to develop data sources that will play a key role in efficient internal and external reporting and build the unit’s overall analytic capacities. Reporting to the Director for Institutional Research, the Data Engineer and Analyst will work side by side with UDS analysts to identify common data constructs and metrics that are required by external entities such as IPEDS, US News & World Report, the Princeton Review, and many other guidebooks, rankings, and publications. The Data Engineer and Analyst will delve into existing, complex university data sources of structured and semi-structured data, combine them when necessary, clean the resulting data, and build calculated variables where needed to create curated datasets that are easily consumable for analysis and that are aligned to external reporting needs. The Data Engineer and Analyst will build expertise on the university’s robust Operational Data Store (ODS), and will draw from the ODS, along with other university data sources as needed, to develop smaller, focused datasets for specific purposes that can be used by analysts across the office. The Data Engineer and Analyst is responsible for designing, developing, and maintaining the resulting datasets, and for training other UDS analysts on the included variables and their associated definitions.
The UDS office regularly receives requests for various data and metrics from individuals across the university; external requests for data from entities such as IPEDS, US News & World Report, the Princeton Review, and many other guidebooks, rankings, and publications; and requests for support with data compilation and presentation in preparation for programmatic, college, or university accreditation and approval. On occasion, the Data Engineer and Analyst will also be responsible for supporting the fulfillment of these data requests. The balance between data engineering responsibilities and data analyst responsibilities will vary over time. In general, the role will focus on data engineering and the curation of datasets for analysis and reporting; however, during times of high need, the Data Engineer and Analyst will also be responsible for querying, compiling, and analyzing data to fulfill incoming requests.
Key Responsibilities of the Data Engineer and Analyst include:
- Work with the Director of Institutional Research and UDS analytic team to identify common metrics for both internal and external data requests, gather requirements for datasets, and translate those requirements into actionable projects;
- Build, manage and “clean” large datasets, creating curated, focused, fit-for-purpose datasets that optimize efficiency in UDS reporting and analysis;
- Train UDS analysts on available datasets, including field/variable definitions;
- Closely collaborate with the Director of Institutional Research and UDS analysts to update and refine datasets on an annual or as-needed basis, as specifications evolve;
- As needed, prepare data and tabulate metrics to meet internal and/or external reporting requirements from accreditors, state and federal governments, and other agencies and organizations;
- Develop and standardize reporting procedures and streamline reporting activities and processes, in order to establish efficient methods of reporting;
- Thoroughly document reporting efforts in UDS records for future reference;
- Identify, investigate, and work to resolve data quality issues with relevant functional units and data administration and governance colleagues.
The role of Data Engineer and Analyst will require strong technical expertise, in addition to strong written and verbal communication skills. A learning mentality is desirable—an interest in expanding upon existing skill sets, learning new technical skills, and participating in informal and formal learning opportunities is strongly preferred. This position involves a significant amount of time working independently on a computer; however, it also involves interaction with others, and requires a customer service mentality in order to adequately respond to requests from both university offices and external agencies. The Data Engineer and Analyst must have strong technical and analytic skills, the capacity to work with large-scale datasets, be detail-oriented, and have a strong commitment to data quality and accuracy. The Data Engineer and Analyst must have the ability to think critically and analytically, work independently, problem solve, and handle multiple concurrent tasks and projects with a variety of internal and external deadlines. An advanced knowledge of SQL and relational databases is required. Advanced Excel, Hyperion/BRIO, Toad, Toad Intelligence Central, Cognos, Tableau, Alteryx, or similar data analysis and visualization tools is strongly preferred.
Specific qualifications include:
- Experience and demonstrated proficiency in database development and management;
- Experience extracting, cleaning, and transforming data for analysis required;
- Experience preferred in a higher education data analysis and reporting setting (institutional research, enrollment analysis, etc.) and/or a higher education IT setting;
- Advanced knowledge of SQL required;
- Advanced knowledge of relational databases required;
- Experience preferred with SQL server and Oracle;
- Advanced practical experience with SQL-based data query tools such as BRIO/Hyperion, Toad, and Toad Intelligence Central strongly preferred;
- Practical experience with data management tools such as Alteryx preferred;
- Familiarity with dimensional data modeling concepts (e.g. Star Schema) preferred;
- Familiarity with Python and/or other open source data engineering tools a plus;
- Strong orientation to detail;
- Strong organization skills;
- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, including a strong customer service orientation;
- Ability to manage concurrent projects and activities with a high degree of quality and data accuracy;
- Ability to meet deadlines and deliver projects in a timely manner;
- Bachelor’s degree required, master’s degree preferred.
Founded in 1898, Northeastern is a global research university and the recognized leader in experience-driven lifelong learning. Our world-renowned experiential approach empowers our students, faculty, alumni, and partners to create impact far beyond the confines of discipline, degree, and campus.
Our locations—in Boston; Charlotte, North Carolina; London; Portland, Maine; San Francisco; Seattle; Silicon Valley; Toronto; Vancouver; and the Massachusetts communities of Burlington and Nahant—are nodes in our growing global university system. Through this network, we expand opportunities for flexible, student-centered learning and collaborative, solutions-focused research.
Northeastern’s comprehensive array of undergraduate and graduate programs— in a variety of on-campus and online formats—lead to degrees through the doctorate in nine colleges and schools. Among these, we offer more than 195 multi-discipline majors and degrees designed to prepare students for purposeful lives and careers.