Job Profile: Data Scientists

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6 January 2017
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The field of data science has been described as “part science, part art.” Data scientists are responsible for organizing and analyzing complicated data sets, and reporting their findings to members of the executive team to help them drive decision making. That means that these professionals must have top-notch mathematics and computer science abilities, and they must be able to draw insightful and creative inferences from the data they analyze. Further, they must be able to communicate those findings and insights to non-technical decision makers in a way what they can fully understand.

The skills and qualifications of data scientists typically include:

  • Familiarity with SQL
  • Expertise in analytics functions (median, rank, over, etc.)
  • Predictive analytics skills
  • Math, statistics, and correlation expertise
  • Data mining
  • Expertise in R
  • Excel, SAS, MATLAB experience
  • Extensive experience working with extremely large data sets
  • Data visualization

Educational Requirements for Data Scientists

Data scientists are typically required to hold a master’s degree, and some positions require a PhD. However, professional data scientists come from a variety of backgrounds and educational disciplines. They can hold degrees in any combination of subjects including data science, computer science, business intelligence, statistics, mathematics, machine learning and even business.  Data scientists should also have several years of practical experience working with data on the job as a data analyst.

Highly successful and well-paid data scientists are experts in a particular industry. Because data is such an industry-specific subject, professionals who choose a focus and gain expertise about what makes companies in that field “tick” can command higher salaries and can climb higher up the career ladder.

Salary and Job Outlook for Data Scientists

According to Glassdoor, the average salary for data scientist jobs in the United States is $118,700.  Indeed cites a similar average annual salary of $117,000. It is important to remember that these websites aggregate salaries based on user input. Individual salary will always depend upon the employer, the job requirements, geographic location, and the qualifications of the data scientist.

Data science jobs have grown at a rapid pace over the last decade, and that growth shows no signs of slowing down. As analytics becomes a must-have for companies of all sizes, the demand will continue to rise. Over the next five years, the field is expected to grow by 30 percent or more.

Career Opportunities for Data Scientists

Data scientists are in demand all across the country, and there has been a well-documented skills gap in the field, meaning there are far more job openings than there are qualified professionals to fill the positions.  Certified and experienced data science professionals who are seeking new and exciting opportunities are encouraged to follow our company page on LinkedIn. Keep in mind that new jobs are always being added, and our analytics recruiters are often working on opportunities that may not yet be available for open posting to the public.

As a specialized analytics recurring firm, OnBoard Recruitment Advisers focuses our attention and expertise on the field of data science and analytics. We work very closely with our data science professionals so that we are able to match them up with opportunities that will allow them to achieve their personal and professional goals.  We look forward to helping you take the next step in your career.

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