We are diving in data. It is everywhere. From credit cards, receipts to our social media accounts that represent us. In fact, the amount of digital data is doubling in size every two years, and by 2020 the data we create and copy annually will reach 44 zettabytes or 44 trillion gigabytes. Imagine how we can utilize all of this big data. This is the future: investing in data. If you want to be ready for the new era, you have to get to know more about data science field.
A big data-related job that is endorsed by Harvard Business Review as the sexiest job of the 21st century is “Data Scientist”. It has been said that there an insane demand on them. The first step in filling this demand is to understand what they actually do in businesses, what skills do they incorporate? And what fields are those skills can be found in? Here are the answers and here are the reasons why you should consider being one.
What a data scientist does
A data scientist job is to work with data analytics programs and algorithms to extract meaning from data to help the business in decision making. They try to find where the information comes from, what it represents and how it can be turned into a valuable resource. They use techniques from many disciplines like mathematics, statistics, and computer science to extract insights from data in various forms. And that what makes data science interdisciplinary field.
Why is data science important?
Data generation is easy now. Every sector of the economy has access to more data than what would have been imaginable a decade ago. Gradually, most industries realized that mining complex amounts of structured and unstructured data to identify patterns can help them in making better decisions. Such as reducing costs, decrease deficiency, finding new market opportunities and gaining a competitive advantage.
Why should you consider data science as a career?
It is growing
In the next few years, It is expected that the size of the data analytics market will evolve and increase rapidly. According to an IBM study, by 2020 the number of data science and analytics job openings is projected to grow by 15%. Which is higher than the average of increase in other sectors.
There is a potential value created through the use of data analytics and that is why firms are making significant investments in analyzing big data, creating more opportunities. All organizations whether large or small are trying to find the talents who can understand, synthesize data, and communicate these findings to help the management make better data-driven decisions.
The market is hungry
In the USA, the demand for both data scientists and data engineers will grow by 39% by 2020, although the job opening remains open for 5 days longer than average. In Egypt, our analysis and data show promising opportunities for the field. The growth rate is 13% which is less than the international growth rate in data science job roles, while it is still more than the average in Egypt, compared to other job roles.
The supply is not flooding the market, there is still not enough talents to provide hungry companies. In comparison to other industries, data science have only 54 average applications per vacancy, which is one of the lowest application rates if we compare it to the general applications per vacancy on WUZZUF which is 98.
The hottest job in the next ten years
If sexy means demanded and rare, data scientists would win it. They are difficult to hire. With this competitive market, they are also difficult to retain. This combination of computational and analytical skills makes them a compelling resource for the business. They analyze data and communicate the outcome to the business owners with a very objective opinion. And that is what makes them very precious and trustworthy.
Hal Varian, the chief economist at Google said, “The sexy job in the next 10 years will be data scientists. People think I’m joking, but who would’ve guessed that computer engineers would’ve been the sexy job of the 1990s?”
Data is money
High demand means high salaries. Take into consideration that not only statistics, math, and computer science skills are in high demand, but also soft skills are driving demand for data scientists. Companies love business leaders who can not only making sense of data but also communicate their findings effectively. Because there is a still such a shortage of talent who can combine these two skill sets, the increase in salary over the last year is 6.4% which is the highest among all technology international jobs salary increases.
You become a data-driven thinker
Who likes to argue? If you are a data scientist, you will end long arguments with objective answers based on data and data analysis. The added benefit is that being the data scientist in the discussion makes you the smartest guy in the room. And puts an end to the long debate-meetings where most arguments are usually based on opinions.
Not just the work, but a career in data science makes you a better decision maker in other spheres of life. What a data scientist does is to make informed discoveries when surrounded by a mess of amounts of information from several and sometimes conflicting sources. They then structure this data and make an organized analysis. How many conflicting data sources we find in life? A lot right? If you make decisions based on data, the likelihood of failure will decrease to almost zero.
You do a real impact: guiding business stakeholders on how to act on findings
Data Scientists have the core skill for starting a business, scaling a business and controlling a business. If there is data, you walk confidently using it. If there is no data will probably go with a hypothesis. A hypothesis is something you cannot rely on and it could cost you a lot of trial and error.
Here is the real impact that you are going to do as a data scientist. You will lighten the way for business decision makers with the real situation. Based on this, they will come up with solutions to move forward. Imagine the impact you are going to do by playing with data. You might save millions and millions. Companies do love what makes them save money. Companies love data scientists.
How can YOU become one?
Data science is not only a new field in Egypt, but it is also for the world. Many universities have not fully adapted to teach it yet. However, other top universities are trying to supply the insane demand in the market and they offer their courses online.
As we always care to provide opportunities that put you on the right track, we collaborated with NTL (Next Technology Leaders), a new initiative led by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) to certify young professionals from top universities 100% FREE. John Hopkins University, also, offers a good bundle of courses about data science for beginners. To take it 100% subsidized, check your eligibility and take it forward.
There are some important skills that have to be in every data science which are:
- Analytical skills: Data scientists use mathematical techniques and models to analyze large amounts of data. They have to determine the appropriate software packages and understand computer programming languages to design and develop new techniques and models. They are highly precise and accurate in their analysis.
- Math skills: Data scientists use statistics, calculus, and linear algebra to develop models and analyses.
- Problem-solving skills: Data scientists devise new solutions to problems encountered by scientists or engineers.
If you have two or all of these skills, maybe being a data scientist is your next move.