Career as Data Scientist - When you wear multiple hats
Bhanu Pratap Singh , 22 Feb 2018

Career as Data Scientist - As big data is increasingly playing a major role in the e-commerce industry, there is a sudden demand for people with career as a data scientist. A high paying job and a chance to contribute towards the society, a career as a data scientist has a lot to offer to those who are ambitious. Read the complete article below to know more about a career as a data scientist. With the advent of e-shopping, there has been a rapid increase in the number of people using various e-commerce platforms for shopping purposes. Increasing use of big data for business needs for shopping portals has now created a need for data scientists. Before we delve further into what a data scientist is, we need to know what data science means. Data science is a multi- disciplinary area, where a number of scientific methods, processes and systems come together to get data for a particular purpose. Speaking in terms of business, data science is a combination of data analysis and statistics which helps in achieving certain business objectives.

Varnith Chordia“Over the past few years, there has been an increase in the demand for data scientists across the world. Firms have been investing in capturing all forms of data which is important to the business. Trying to get the maximum out of the data to make better decisions is the focus,” says Varnith Chordia, a data scientist, who has done his Masters in Data Science from Rutgers University, New York.


Who is a data scientist?

A data scientist is a person who is ideally a mathematician, computer scientist and a trend-spotter as well. Such individuals were virtually unknown a few years ago, but now, since big data is increasingly playing a major role in the e-commerce industry, there is a sudden demand for data scientists. The earliest data scientists were statisticians and data analysts, but as the field of data science evolved, especially the evolution of big data, there has been an evolution of a data scientist as well.



Making computers learn without human interventionNilotpal Sinha


Nilotpal Sinha,

Data Scientist,

Emirates Airlines


Careers360: Do data scientists face a lot of challenges?

Nilotpal: The size of data grows at a rate much faster than the computing power of our hardware as a result of which it is generally observed that deeper and more complex computation tend to become costlier in terms of resources and time.

Data scientists mostly make predictions in terms of mathematics and statistics whereas the clients mostly speak a business language. Converting the results of an analysis into a business language which the clients can easily comprehend is something that does not always come naturally to a mathematically minded data scientist.


Careers360: What are the popular growth trends in Data Science?

Nilotpal: In recent times, there is greater focus of unsupervised learning where humans do not tell the computer what to do. Instead, we build enough intelligence in the computer so that it can start looking at things and learning them on its own without human intervention. With the passage of time, as the computer encounters new data or observation, it continues to learn on its own and add to its previous learning. Unsupervised learning using Deep Learning methods, especially with Google TensorFlow is the hottest topic in data science at the moment.


Careers360: Who is a good data scientist?

Nilotpal: A person with career as a data scientist is an ideal combination of a person with good skills in three fields: mathematics/statistics, computer programming business knowledge per cent of these, the business knowledge can vary from client to client.


Skills required for a data scientist

Being a data scientist requires a person to have technical as well as non-technical skills such as business sense, you need to know how to turn those numbers into profit.

Education: If you are planning to pursue career as a data scientist, you should know that you need to have a high level of educational qualification. A majority of the data scientists have a Master’s Degree and at least half of the data scientists have PhDs. Becoming a data scientist requires a strong and an in-depth knowledge in the field of Mathematics, Statistics, Computer Science, and Engineering.

Knowledge in statistical tools: With career as a data scientist it is important for you to have a complete know-how of statistical tools such as SAS (Statistical Analysis System) or the R Journal (Refereed Journal) or any other statistical tools which are available.

Coding: Coding is an important part of a data scientist’s job profile. As a data scientist, you should know how to code using python coding (The most common type of coding) techniques such as Java and C++. Another important is the use of the Hadoop Platform for coding purposes. Many data scientists tend to ignore this platform as it is not considered as a major requirement, but since it is used in most of the cases, it is important to know it, as it will give you an edge over others.

Unstructured Data: As a data scientist, it is important for you to work with data which is unstructured and it can be in the form of social media, video and audio files.


Non-technical skills required by data scientist

Cognitive curiosity: It is one of the most important soft skills that are required to become a data scientist. If you are intellectually not curious, you might not be able to see a solution to a particular problem or you might not be able to interpret data in the correct way which will help the business to grow.

Business acumen: This one goes without saying, in order to be successful in career as a data scientist; you should have a keen business sense. You need a thorough understanding of the industry your business deals in. This understanding will help you solve problems for your company. You should also know how to get more business for your company by leveraging the data.

Communication skills: As with every other skill which results in the growth of the business, it is important for you to have good communication skills. These days, companies are looking for data scientists who can present their ideas effortlessly to non-technical teams of the company (marketing or the sales teams).

Salary: In India, the average starting salary of a person with career as a data scientist is rupees six lakhs per year depending on your experience and the company you join.

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