Are you good at analyzing data and spotting trends? Do math and statistics pique your interest? If so, you may want to explore a career in data science. Data science was ranked the #1 job in America in 2017, 2018 and 2019 — it made us want to research data science jobs and salaries. Don’t miss out on where to find them. Benzinga will help you in your job.
Overview: What a Data Scientist Does
Data scientists analyze and interpret large amounts of data from businesses to identify patterns and trends. They use this information to evaluate problems within an organization and develop solutions based on that data.
Data scientists share their findings with business leaders so decisions can be made about the next steps. They can work independently or as part of a larger IT team. Data scientists are knowledgeable in computer science, IT, statistics and math. Other tasks could include:
- Collaborating with software engineers, product managers and customer service teams
- Using cluster analysis, pattern recognition and natural language processing to mine, capture and analyze data
- Creating learning-based tools or processes to improve performance
- Forecasting results based on findings
Education, Training and Certifications for Data Scientists
If you’re an aspiring data scientist, you’ll need a bachelor of science in math, physics, IT, computer science, engineering or a related field. A master’s or doctorate is a plus. No matter which degree you pursue, you should take several data analytics courses and others related to data science. It’s also a good idea to obtain as many certifications as possible, such as:
- Python coding
- SQL database/coding
- Hadoop platform
- Apache Spark
Since Artificial Intelligence (AI) or machine learning has become increasingly popular with employers, it’s good to know concepts such as supervised machine learning, logistic regression, decision trees and survival analysis if you want to edge out your competitors.
Jobs and Titles in Data Science
The data science field encompasses many different job titles and categories. Here are a few sample job titles and descriptions to give you an idea of what types of jobs are available.
Data Scientist Jobs
Data scientists gather, review and analyze large sets of data from many different types of organizations, both profit and non-profit. This data breaks down to numbers that represent a company’s performance, profitability, productivity and other metrics. Data scientists can work remotely or in an office as part of a larger IT team.
Sample job titles: Data scientist, data analyst, data specialist
Analytics Manager Jobs
Analytics managers design and implement data analysis solutions and business intelligence tools. You might also:
- Develop strategies for effective data analysis and reporting.
- Train and supervise a team of data analysts.
- Report findings to business decision-makers and leaders for strategic planning.
Sample job titles: Analytics manager, data analytics manager, analytics supervisor
Database Administrator Jobs
Database administrators are in charge of anything related to a company’s database management system, including security, storage and retrieval. They also handle:
- Database design
- Performance monitoring
- System backup and recovery
If anything goes wrong with their database system, the administrator takes care of it.
Sample job titles: Database administrator, system administrator, chief technology officer (CTO)
Data Engineer Jobs
Data engineers develop and maintain database management systems. They also install disaster recovery programs, define and develop processes for data mining and modeling and provide advice on strategies to enhance data efficiency, data reliability and quality.
Sample job titles: Data engineer, systems engineer, database systems engineer
Business Intelligence Developer Jobs
A business intelligence developer works with software and databases to make data understandable for businesses. You also might:
- Design and create tables
- Ensure operating systems are working efficiently
- Create a warehouse database to store a large volume of data
- Translate applications to ensure they’re user-friendly
Sample job titles: Business intelligence developer, data warehouse developer, senior business intelligence developer
Information Research Scientist Jobs
An information research scientist finds new ways to compute and use existing technology. Information research scientists also create and improve computer hardware and software and specialize in computer languages.
Sample job titles: Information research scientist, computer and information research scientist, data research scientist
Salary Ranges and Expectations for Data Scientists
A 2018 survey by Glassdoor reveals the average median salary for data scientists is $110,000, so this is a lucrative field. If you specialize in certain areas such as AI, your salary would increase significantly. Glassdoor used salary, job openings and overall job satisfaction to rank the top 50 job categories.
Projected Growth Rate of the Data Science Field
Data scientists are needed in virtually every industry, from health care and government to biotechnology and transportation. Most companies have large sets of data that need to be interpreted and analyzed. More than 4,500 job openings in data science are currently available. The job growth rate in this field is 16%, much faster than other occupations nationally, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
How to Get a Data Science Job
What’s the best way to get your foot in the door? Here are a few tips and strategies to help you get a jump your job search:
- Check out your college’s career center. You can get resume help as well as job leads, so it’s a good place to start.
- Consider an internship. Interning is a great way to learn the job, plus many companies pay and hire their interns.
- Update your resume. Have your resume written by a professional, and be sure to highlight any business analyst courses.
- Build a portfolio of projects. You can use a tool like Jupyter Notebook to author your project and post it publicly on a site such as Github to show off your best work.
- Register with a staffing agency. Many agencies specialize in placing IT candidates and they usually have leads on jobs that aren’t posted online yet.
- Network. You can connect with peers and find job postings by joining online data science communities, joining LinkedIn or Facebook groups, attending seminars and meetups and joining professional organizations such as the Data Science Association.
- Specialize. By specializing in an area such as business intelligence, cybersecurity, business analytics, computer engineering or computer science, you’ll be more marketable to employers.
- Target your job search. Make a wishlist of the top companies you’d like to work for and search their careers section for job openings.
- Start your own business. You can work remotely and provide data science analysis and consulting services to clients, as well as set your own rates. Create a website and share it with friends, peers and social media.
- Search job-specific sites. Sites such as Upwork, ai-jobs.net, Amazon Jobs, Big Data Jobs, BuiltIn and DataJobs all cater to job seekers looking for data science jobs.
Top 7 Skills of the Best Data Scientists
What kinds of skills do you need to be successful as a data scientist? Here’s a list of our top 7 must-have skills:
1. Communication Skills
Data scientists need to communicate effectively with business stakeholders, colleagues, leaders and end-users. You should be able to explain complex data problems and solutions so even non-technical people can understand.
2. Research Skills
Good research skills are essential if you want to be a data scientist. You’ll be researching large sets of data and interpreting it for organizations who will assume you’ve done your due diligence.
3. Project Management Skills
All of your work as a data scientist will be project-based, whether you work independently or for a large corporation. You’ll need to be able to create project plans, lead project teams and meet key deliverables.
4. Technical Skills
Technical skills should be your strong suit if data science is your desired field. From speaking SQL to programming to data mining and coding, data scientists are techies through and through.
5. Analytical Skills
A big part of your job as a data scientist is analyzing and interpreting data sets, so you’ll need to bring your analytical “A” game. Your ability to identify patterns and trends is critical to helping businesses develop business strategies and solutions.
6. Problem-Solving Skills
The data analysis, mining, and coding you perform for organizations are all geared toward improving processes and solving problems, so your problem-solving skills are critical.
7. Mathematical Skills
Math is the main foundation of data analysis and computer programming, it should come easy to you. You’ll be required to perform complex mathematical calculations and interpret data statistics daily.
Is a Data Security Job the Best Fit?
A job in data science offers a good plan for retirement and a bright future if you’re a computer whiz and excel at data analysis. You can make over $110,000 per year, work remotely and choose a company you’d like to work for. It’s a job seeker’s market, so if this is your forte, you’ll have your pick of great opportunities.