There has been a well-documented skills gap in the world of big data. The market for analytics has expanded exponentially over the last several years, but the market isn’t producing enough highly qualified data analysts and scientists to fill those positions. According to a recent study by Gartner, 4.4 million big data jobs are expected to be created around the world in the next three years, but one third of those jobs will remain unfilled. In the United States alone, almost 200,000 big data jobs are expected to remain vacant through 2018.
Advanced degrees and experience are required to successfully gather, organize, and manage data streams to help companies make decisions – certifications aren’t enough to arm IT professionals with the skills they need to do the job. At a minimum, analysts must hold a master’s degree in business intelligence, computer science or analytics, and that is creating a barrier to entry in the field. Companies don’t have time to wait for the market to even out. The pace of business is moving faster than ever before. So how can you source big data teams to drive your company into the future at a time when data science skills are scarce?
Develop From Within
When it comes to big data, industry knowledge is critical. Data scientists cannot hop from industry to industry like some other IT professionals can. One way to access pros who have industry-specific knowledge is to develop data analysts from within your own team. Identify high-potential employees who have a desire to work in analytics and offer them professional development opportunities like tuition reimbursement. This will ensure that you’re getting the skills you’re looking for and it will improve long-term employee retention rates. Typically, companies require five years of service once an employee completes their degree, which guarantees that you can see a return on your investment.
Partner With Universities
If your company can develop a partnership with colleges and universities that are producing data scientists, you can tap directly into their network of graduating professionals. Create internship and externship programs to connect with talent while they are still working towards their degrees and get involved with on-campus recruiting programs.
If you want to find the best and brightest, don’t limit your partnerships to local colleges. Seek out schools that have top-notch programs and focus your energy there. Distance is no reason to lose out on potential talent, and most data science and business intelligence students are prepared for the prospect of relocation. If your organization does not have relocation bonuses or incentives in place, be prepared to develop those incentives if you want to be competitive when recruiting big data graduates.
Big Data Without Borders
While the U.S. is behind the curve when it comes to turning out high numbers of data science professionals, there are a host of data gurus across the globe who hold the skills, expertise, and the degrees to get the job done. Hiring international workers can be tricky, however, and there are lots of hoops to jump through. First, you must be approved to hire international workers by the U.S. Department of Labor. One you’ve identified potential employees, a host of other paperwork must be filed in order to sponsor that employee and begin the process of securing a visa. Deadlines are tight, the paperwork can be tedious, and there are a limited number of visa petitions granted each year. However, if you’re willing to learn and stick with the process, it will open up an entirely new (and deep) talent pool.
Big data is no longer a “wish” for companies, it’s a must-have. The ever-increasing demand will only continue to deepen the skills gap in the market. Having a partner who can connect you with big data talent can ease the pressure. If your organization is on the lookout for data scientists and analysts, and you’re worried about the skills gap, contact OnBoard Recruitment Advisers today. We work with a network of big data professionals who are ready, willing, and able to accept new challenges. We can help you develop a team of analysts who will help drive the success of your business today, tomorrow, and well into the future.