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Is A Data Science Career the Right Choice for the Future?

In 2009, Google’s Chief Economist, Hal Varian, predicted that in the next decade, the “sexiest” job would be of statisticians. Statistics has always been considered a dry subject amongst high school students. So what was Hal Varian indicating?

Let’s take the example of Coronavirus. This virus that halted the entire world and instilled immense fear amongst the public came with absolutely no guidebook. Fortunately, as the virus spread worldwide, scientists were able to study trends and gather information to better understand the virus. This understanding helped devise plans to combat it and slow down its spread, all thanks to the data collected since the outbreak.

Hal Varian indeed was correct. The statistics and the scattered data certainly helped scientists and healthcare workers understand the virus better. And not only did it benefit them, businessmen, economists and practically every person in every field profited from this collected information to plan their way forward in the pandemic.

Statistics were not just relevant during the pandemic. Before its outbreak, the abundance of data had made many large corporations hire personnel with the knowledge of handling big data. And this is precisely why the demand for a data scientist increased significantly. This caused many high-school students to be intrigued by this field and consider it a career.

The opportunities for students to progress along this career path are tremendous as many well-known universities are offering undergraduate and graduate degrees in it. Also, distance learning has helped many aspirants find a solid career in this field by applying for online masters in analytics and data sciences.

The opportunities are there; the proper education is there. Now let’s dive in and understand what it truly is and what future are the latest trends predicting for this field.

Has the amount of data collected grown over time?

Advancement in technology meant higher dependency on machines. Paper was slowly replaced, and every available information was automated for speedier processing. With the dawn of the era of social media, it became easier to collect information directly from the public in the comforts of their homes. This opened vast opportunities for businesses to understand their consumers’ needs. Everything became available at one click. This ease led to an abundance of data. According to recent stats, 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are generated daily. So who handles all this? Who can understand this mountain high information, screen through it and filter out useful information?

What is data science, and what does a data scientist do?

Data science is considered a multi-disciplinary field. The name may suggest it only has to deal with science and computers, but it also deals with statistics, business analytics and the understanding of human psychology. A data scientist is equipped with excellent statistical analysis and data visualization. In addition, they are proficient in the utilization of machine learning methodology. Using well-designed programs, they comprehend and assess conceptual challenges linked to businesses. 

How pivotal is the role of a data scientist?

Social media has encouraged businesses of every size to focus on their consumers. This has created a considerable emphasis on consumer behavior data. All future predictions, marketing strategies and product designing are made after understanding what the public desires or pays attention to. Organizations are now constantly working to gather information. This makes a data scientist extremely central for every business. For example, a data scientist can help a pharmaceutical company plan its production for the upcoming year based on the demands. Also, a data scientist can help a business predict its sales in a particular area for a new outlet. Furthermore, a data scientist can help an educational institute study the ongoing job market trends so that they can help their students polish those skills. Every industry, you name it, is known to benefit from having a data scientist on board.

Does higher demand mean more salary?

So, now that we have established how important a data scientist is, this automatically means a career in data science means big bucks. The latest stats show that the average base salary of a data scientist is $5,308 per month in the US. In the first year of the pandemic, data scientists’ salaries were estimated to rise by a whopping 10.5% since June 2016. Analysts predict that this skill will likely see an increase in its demand over the next five years, and thus an increase in their salary is automatically foreseen.

Is data science for everyone?

We may have successfully intrigued you towards this field. However, a common confusion many students and their parents face is that this field is just for students who possess prior knowledge of computers or have a knack for coding. Well, we have good news. As discussed earlier, data science is a multi-disciplinary field. It branches out to many different roles that have lately been introduced that don’t necessarily deal with coding. So we’ll breakdown a few for your better understanding:

  • Business Intelligence and Strategy Making involves the study of past data to develop strategies for the future.
  • Data Engineering involves designing databases and organizing data from multiple sources for analysts to use.
  • Data Analytics involves the use of data to improve a company’s current operations.
  • Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence Specialization involves high-end programming and requires great knowledge of different database languages to handle big data.
  • Market Data Analytics involves collecting data directly from the market to understand the consumer’s needs and expectations to help plan marketing strategies accordingly.
  • Cyber Security Data Analytics involves using deep analysis and design to implement algorithms using large datasets that detect bugs and vulnerabilities. These algorithms then can predict future attacks and threats so that the company in question can take pre-emptive measures accordingly.

Conclusion:

Data science indeed has proven to be the most in-demand career choice right now. The trends predicted by scientists show that this skill will still hold its value in years to come as technology is rapidly growing and information is increasing. In order for businesses and companies to have a profitable future, they need to rely on precise data collection to predict a strong future. These predictions are only made more accurate by studying the past and present data trends. And this job is for a data scientist. Now, who wouldn’t want to be this desired?

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