Data scientists and data engineers work together in the field of Data Engineering. This is the complex science behind some of today’s most used and most fascinating technology. From self-driving cars to the coding of social media websites, there are plenty of opportunities out there for newly certified data scientists.
A highly skilled data scientist is extremely sought after these days by many technical companies. And that is because a data scientist can add a lot of value to a company.
A data scientist may be a great asset to a company, but they are only as worthwhile as the data that they have access to. Many companies will store their data in a variety of formats such as text files or complex databases. This is where data engineers are needed.
These scientists create the programs that allow data to be transformed into a viable format that data scientists can use.
So, while data scientists and data engineers may have different jobs, they need each other’s help to get the task done.
What Is a Data Scientist?
A data scientist can design and create brand-new approaches to various computing tactics. They can find new ways to use current technology or come up with brand new innovative tools that help make life easier. These scientists study and conduct research to solve a variety of complex issues in the industries of business, healthcare, science and numerous other fields.
The duties of a data scientists can include everything from wiping data clean from a machine to deploying predictive models. But while they are able to work on a full spectrum of issues, it is rare for a single data scientist to take on so many diverse roles at once.
Usually, a data scientist will focus on a single area of expertise while working with one company. However, they always have the option to move on to another industry to try out something different using their same skill set.
How Much Is the Average Data Scientist Salary?
The average annual data scientist salary according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics was $114,520 in May 2017. The lower 10% of all data scientists received an average that was less than $65,540. The higher 10% of all data scientists received an average that was more than $176,780.
Here are the average annual salaries for all data scientists in the top industries.
The majority of all data scientists work full time. Three out of ten data scientists worked more than 40 hours a week in 2016.
What Are the Duties of a Data Scientist?
Data scientists come up with new approaches to computer technology and innovative methods that work with both old and new technology. They research and study to come up with solutions for complex issues in the computer industry. They are available to help out major corporations, small businesses and the science or healthcare industries.
A few of the common duties that a data scientist performs regularly include:
A data scientist can create or improve computer software or hardware. This often involves working with algorithms. These are computing tasks that tell a computer what to do. Because algorithms can be difficult to understand, a data scientist will do research and work to simplify algorithms. Doing so helps make computer systems run smoother and more efficiently.
A data scientist can also design new computer architecture that can improve the performance of computer hardware. That is why they are also known as data architects.
What Is the Work Environment for Data Scientists?
The largest percentage of data scientists in the United States work for the federal government. This accounts for around 28% of all workers. Around 20% of data scientists work in computer system design and other related services.
Those who work for the federal government can often be found inside an office, sitting behind a computer. Or they may work inside of a lab conducting research on various inventions.
While many data scientists will work on their own or in pairs, some may also work on teams along with computer hardware engineers, electrical engineers and other specialists.
A Data scientist will usually work full time, Monday through Friday, for at least 40 hours a week.
How Do You Become a Data Scientist?
Most of the positions available for data scientists will require you to have at least a master’s degree in computer science or any related field such as information technology. If you take a job working for the federal government, a bachelor’s degree may be enough for some positions. But you will have more opportunities available to you where you can use all your skills if you have a master’s degree.
As stated above, it is best for all data scientists to have a master’s degree in computer science at the minimum. This type of degree will require anywhere from 2 to 3 years of study when you obtain it after earning your bachelor’s degree in computer science or another related field. Data scientists who work in a special field may need to gain more knowledge in that particular area. For instance, a data scientist who works with biomedical applications should take some medical or biology classes to supplement their knowledge.
Room for Advancement
Becoming a data scientist is considered an advanced career, but there is still some room to move up. Many data scientists will go back to school to become a computer and information systems manager which will provide them with a higher data scientist salary.
Qualities a Data Scientist Must Have
There are certain qualities that an employer will look for when they want to hire a data scientist.
A data scientist will need to be motivated and organized when it comes to thinking and coming up with useful conclusions.
Good Communication Skills
They will work with a variety of employees that range from those with no technical background to those who have an abundance of knowledge in the field. A data scientist will need to be able to communicate well with both types and everyone in between.
Critical Thinking Skills
A data scientist is required to work on a variety of complex issues and therefore they will need to have excellent problem solving and critical thinking skills.
One of the main tasks that a data scientist much do is come up with new and innovative ways to solve complex problems. And continue to do so even when their ideas fail.
A data scientist will need to be very knowledgeable when it comes to advanced mathematics and other related topics essential to computing.
All computer algorithms require logic to work correctly and for data scientists to understand them. Therefore, these experts will need to have excellent skills when it comes to reasoning.
It’s important for data scientists to always pay close attention to every aspect of the problem they are working on or the projects they are attempting to create. This could mean the difference between their problem-solving technique or project being a success or failure.
What Is the Job Outlook for Data Scientists?
The job outlook for a data scientists currently looks very good for the future. Employment in this field is expected to rise as much as 19% between 2016 and 2026. That is much faster than average for most occupations.
The fast growth for this position could mean as many as 5,400 new jobs for qualified individuals throughout the stated 10-year period.
The reason for such a positive outlook for data scientist jobs is due to the fast growth of data collection by companies. As this growth continues, it will cause an increase in the need for data-mining and other similar services. Data scientists are needed to write algorithms and help configure large amounts of data for businesses.
Data scientists are expected to have excellent job prospects in the future in multiple industries.
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