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Table of Contents

Hiring Business Intelligence (BI) Engineers: All You Need to Know

If you want to stand out from your competitors, consider hiring a business intelligence (BI) engineer. These professionals are experts in BI, a technology-driven process that collects, stores, and analyzes data created by your company. They can use BI software and statistical models to derive actionable insights that help the C-suite, managers, and workers make better business decisions.

Read on to learn more about BI engineers, their salaries, and their responsibilities. We'll also provide tips for recruiting first-rate BI engineers.

What Is a Business Intelligence Engineer?

A BI engineer is an information technology (IT) professional who designs, implements, and maintains systems for collecting and analyzing BI data. They create databases, dashboards, and other platforms for collecting and analyzing BI data effectively and efficiently.

Like other IT professionals, BI engineers don't work in a vacuum. They work closely with marketing leads and other stakeholders to ensure that they're deriving helpful insights. They may also teach other staff and departments how to use BI programs and tools.

What Is Business Intelligence?

BI is a process for analyzing data and delivering actionable insights that can help managers, executives, and other staff make informed business decisions.

Here's how the BI process works:

  1. Data sourcing: First, BI engineers collect information from internal and external sources. This can include historical information and real-time data gathered from the internet.
  2. Data staging and cleaning: Next, BI engineers clean data by removing inaccurate, repeated, or corrupt records from the data. They typically do this via Extract, Transform, Load (ETL) tools, such as Azure Data Factory, Alteryx, and Talend.
  3. Data storage: After cleaning the data, BI engineers will load the data into your company's data warehouse. A data warehouse is a data management system that supports BI activities, such as analytics.
  4. Data visualization, reporting, and dashboarding: Once the data has been cleaned and loaded onto the data warehouse, BI engineers will fetch the data using BI tools like Tableau and Power BI. They will then use BI analytics tools to visualize and derive insights from data.

Junior/Entry-Level Salary and Skills

Junior and entry-level BI engineers have under three years of real-life experience. They're usually fresh university or boot camp grads. According to Glassdoor, the average junior or entry-level BI programmer earns $80,616 yearly, with additional cash compensation averaging $6,124.

Junior and entry-level BI engineers aren't expected to have many skills, since they're new to the workplace. However, they should have the following skills:

  • Zero to three years of experience as a business analyst
  • Zero to three years performing complex data modeling and analysis
  • Some knowledge of SQL, Tableau, and Excel
  • Basic Python programming skills
  • Excellent communication and problem-solving skills
  • Some experience with data transformation and testing
  • Some familiarity with version control and Linux commands
  • Strong mathematical and analytical skills

To make the most out of entry-level and junior hires, consider giving them mentorship and educational opportunities. For example, you can pair your junior and entry-level engineers with senior business intelligence engineers. If you have the budget for it, you can also pay for them to be certified in the hottest BI technologies.

Senior Business Intelligence Engineer Salary and Skills

Senior business intelligence experts have over three years of professional experience. As such, they have much higher salaries than their junior and entry-level counterparts. Glassdoor reveals that the average senior BI engineer in the U.S. earns a whopping $127,099 annually, with additional cash compensation averaging $21,918.

Most companies require senior BI engineers to have the following skills:

  • At least three years of experience with SQL, ETL, SQL Server, SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS), SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS), and SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) systems, software, and programs
  • At least three years of experience with Cloud, Agile, redSHIFT, R, and Python
  • Solid experience in data transformation, data warehouse design, data lake architectures, version control, and Linux commands
  • Fluency in datasets, statistics, and scripting
  • Robust problem-solving, communication, and leadership skills
  • Familiarity with relational databases and version control
  • Experience using different types of BI tools, including operational intelligence (OI), real-time BI applications, software-as-a-service BI, and online analytical processing (OLAP)

What Does a BI Engineer Do?

BI engineers' responsibilities vary depending on their company and industry. However, most BI engineers are responsible for:

  • Planning, designing, building, and supporting BI and data warehousing solutions
  • Designing, coding, testing, debugging, and documenting BI programs
  • Monitoring and adjusting BI tools to ensure optimal performance
  • Designing and maintaining data models for analytics and reporting
  • Creating dashboards and KPIs to analyze and demonstrate business performance
  • Ensuring data accuracy
  • Supporting configuration, upgrades, and troubleshooting for BI tools
  • Providing BI updates to business, customers, and staff on a timely basis
  • Modifying existing extracts, reports, and dashboards as needed
  • Preparing detailed documentation and specifications for new BI programs
  • Identifying BI development needs to streamline operations
  • Owning the design and development of automated BI solutions for recurring analysis and reporting

How To Recruit First-Class BI Engineers

With so many business intelligence engineering experts on the net, finding the right one can be an uphill battle. Follow these steps to hire the best BI engineer for your team:

1. How to Find and Hire the Best Business Intelligence Engineers?

First, you need to find a suitable platform or place for sourcing and hiring the best BI engineers. These include:

Job Sites

One of the best places to source top-notch BI engineers is through job sites like LinkedIn and Indeed. These sites have powerful tools for building talent pipelines and reaching out to candidates.

For example, LinkedIn provides:

  • Jobs: This tool lets you post individual, promoted jobs with a total or daily budget. It's perfect for small startups that only need to make a few hires per year.
  • Recruiter: An all-in-one hiring platform to find, connect with, and manage candidates, Recruiter is a juiced-up version of Jobs. It provides access to the world's largest professional network. It also offers important insights, powerful analytics and collaboration tools for managing candidate pipelines, and personalized messaging.
  • Career Pages: Career Pages lets you put your job opportunities and company culture in the spotlight. Specifically, you can give job seekers a snapshot of your culture by posting employee-created content, photos, videos, tailored messages, and testimonials. You can also create job recommendations and content for targeted audiences.
  • Work With Us Ads: LinkedIn also offers Work With Us Ads, which lets you promote your company and roles on your employees' profiles. Use this tool to save time on searching for candidates.

Tech Hubs

If you prefer meeting hires in person, consider hiring from tech hubs.

Tech hubs are suburbs, offices, or cities that connect BI engineers, software developers, policymakers, business leaders, and researchers. Famous U.S. examples include:

  • Silicon Valley in California
  • Austin, Texas
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Atlanta, Georgia
  • Chicago, Illinois

However, BI engineering talent from these cities typically require high salaries. To illustrate, the average senior BI engineer in Chicago, Illinois, earns a staggering $127,099 per year with additional cash compensation averaging $21,918. Salaries aren't much lower in other cities — the average senior analyst in Austin, Texas, earns $103,109 annually or $49 per hour.

Luckily, there's a cost-effective way to hire BI engineers — through Latin American tech hubs. These include:

  • Monterrey, Mexico: Mexico's most Americanized city, Monterrey is home to Mexico's biggest companies, including Banorte, Cemex, Femsa, Farmacia Benavides, and Soriana. It also boasts over 100 innovation parks and 320 tech companies.
  • Tijuana, Mexico: Tijuana is best known as a party city. However, it's now using its bilingual population, strategic location, and tech talent to refashion itself into a cross-border tech hub. It has many startup accelerators, including the Tijuana Hub, which encourages University of San Diego students, faculty, alumni, and community partners to collaborate with Tijuana tech talent and entrepreneurs.
  • Buenos Aires, Argentina: The capital of Argentina, Buenos Aires is home to many startups, including Latin America's Amazon, Mercado Libre. The city is also known for its cryptocurrency companies.
  • Montevideo, Uruguay: The capital of Uruguay boasts many tech companies, including Tata Consultancy Services, Globant, IBM, Oracle, and Sabre. It also has a state-of-the-art tech park, LATU. LATU's mission is to support Uruguay's technology and production chains by establishing links between society, knowledge centers, and high-value companies. The park offers training infrastructure, start-up accelerators, a science and technology museum, and event centers.

Tech Talent Marketplaces

Job sites and tech hubs are great ways to source and hire business intelligence engineering talent.

However, they can be time sinks. To hire the right candidates from job sites and tech hubs, you must test and vet candidates for their experience, personalities, skills, and English proficiency. This can take months, especially if you have specific project requirements and a large talent pipeline.

That's where tech talent marketplaces come in. Unlike job sites and tech hubs, talent marketplaces pre-vet their BI engineering talent, so you don't have to. All you have to do is tell the marketplace about your goals, and in a few days, you'll receive a list of the best engineers for your team.

2. Write a Great Project Description to Attract Talent

If you want to hire BI engineers via job sites and tech hubs, you must create a comprehensive project ad to attract leading-edge talent.

At a minimum, your description should include:

  • A clear job title like "Remote Senior BI Engineer"
  • A short company vio
  • Roles and responsibilities
  • Required skills
  • Compensation and benefits
  • Schedule

Here's a sample BI engineer project description:

Remote Senior BI Engineer — Revelo

Revelo is looking for a Remote Senior BI Engineer from the following time zones:

  • Eastern Standard Time (EST)
  • Central Standard Time (CST)
  • Mountain Standard Time (MST)
  • Pacific Standard Time (PST)

Company Bio:

Revelo is Latin America's premier tech talent marketplace. We pair startups with highly-skilled programmers who have been rigorously pre-vetted on technical and soft skills. Check out our website to learn more.

Roles and Responsibilities:

  • Design, build, test, and deploy BI and analytical solutions
  • Use BI tools to derive actionable insights from data
  • Set up data integrations for clients and stakeholders
  • Implement best practices when extracting data from external and internal sources
  • Create production-quality tables to query from
  • Transform data to ensure our data usage is clean and efficient
  • Mentor junior and entry-level engineers

Required Skills:

  • At least three years of experience in BI reporting, data modeling, visualization, and data engineering
  • Proven experience creating data visualizations and creating easy-to-use dashboards
  • Fluency in Python, R, Tableau, Looker, Oracle, and other relevant technologies
  • Advanced SQL skills

Compensation and Benefits:

  • $120,000 to $130,000 per year, depending on experience
  • Tuition reimbursement
  • Work from home
  • Vision care

Schedule:

  • Eight-hour shift, any time between 9:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. EST
  • Monday to Friday

3. Ask the Right Interview Questions

After posting your job ad, you will receive a ton of applications. Use an applicant tracking system (ATS) to scan resumes for role-specific keywords and generate a list of candidates to interview.

Ask piercing questions to learn more about what potential hires can bring to the table. Here are some to get you started:

  • What drew you to BI?
  • What do you like the most about BI? What do you like the least?
  • What are your favorite programming languages and why?
  • What steps do you take to implement company BI analytics?
  • What is a data lake? How does it differ from a data warehouse?
  • What is a data mart? Why would you use a data mart instead of a data warehouse?
  • How do you design efficient BI reports and dashboards?
  • How can you improve data quality?
  • What BI tools have you used? Which ones do you like the most?
  • What kind of data warehouse system do you like the most?
  • What's your approach to predicting future trends?
  • What is the hardest thing about being a BI engineer?
  • Where do you see yourself in five years?
  • What's your approach to mentoring entry-level and junior engineers?

Start Recruiting FAANG-Caliber BI Engineers Today

BI engineers can derive actionable insights for improving business operations. They can also plan, design, build, test, deploy, and maintain BI analytics tools.

If you want to hire a BI engineer, reach out to Revelo today. We provide access to 300,000 BI engineers in U.S.-adjacent time zones. All of our talent have been rigorously pre-vetted for their skills, English proficiency, and experience.

Contact us today to hire business intelligence engineers.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a free trial period for hiring
Business Intelligence
developers through Revelo?

Yes, if for any reason you find the developer you hire isn't a good fit within the first 14 days - you pay nothing or we can find you a replacement at no additional cost.

How are Revelo
Business Intelligence
developers different?
Revelo offers full-time remote
Business Intelligence
developers who share or highly overlap with your work day. You get world-class
Business Intelligence
developers in Latin America who speak English and are vetted on soft and technical skills. All developers live in the same time zones as the US or adjacent due to our talent base being exclusively in Latin America.
How do I hire
Business Intelligence
developers?

Hiring a full-time developer through Revelo is a simple 3-step process. First, you tell us your hiring needs. Second, we match you to the best developers within 3 days. Third, you interview the candidates you like and hire the one you like most.

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