It's difficult to say specifically how you'd need to spread your stats out as it varies heavily with what your ship's build and race is. I have some general tips though.
1.)Anytime you level up in a sector that has the same race as your ship, you will get a crew member instead of a random item. Crew members typically have strong stat boosts in areas their race ships are strong in (Utopians and Computers, Drakk and Helm etc.). You don't necessarily need to put as many points into your ship's primary stat as you get a little every time you upgrade via command and your crew you obtain from leveling will have a lot of it as well.
2.)Drakk's service (found when buying/selling things with drakk) gives you a quest to go kill a boss and always rewards with a drakk crew member. This means unless you are making a stealth ship you shouldn't need to put too many points into helm.
3.)As I said above you do not necessarily need to always use the best stuff you find right away. Often times you find items that are only marginally better but would require you to put 4-5 points in a stat (so a whole level of stats to use) to equip.
4.)Use the race services. If you don't like your build, Cortex can return any spent stat points except those spent in command. Lithsoid increase the durability of items, which is especially important on armor as you can increase a single piece of armors effectiveness by around 200% using this service. Scavenger can help you get better components but can also help you find chips easier to up grade items which combos well with Utopians who can give you additional chip slots. Another important one is fringe which reduces the power requirement of specific stuff in your ship so you don't need as many reactors.
5.)Use resistance items, they are great. The two most important resistances are Thermal and Explosive, as these are the most common sources of damage. Typically an up to date resistance item should give your 50% dmg resistance to it's type, or if you find the general one that gives a little of all resistances, roughly 15% of each. I often go with 2 general resistances to give a little bit of everything, but really thermal and explosive are the most important.
6.)Learn to Juke attacks. A lot of AI attacks shoot where you are heading at the time the shot is firing. If you fly erratically ships with ballistic weapons and bombs will have a hard time hitting you. This is especially important with neamtos (who will murder you even with 50%kinetic resistance if they hit you with all three attacks, wreckers so the mines fly really far away from you, and quake so their radiation bomb doesn't kill you. The fact that these attacks are easy to juke makes them less important to build resistances against them.
That's just some general stuff for now, I can go into more detail later when I have more time.