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3/27/2012
11:32 AM
Doug Henschen
Doug Henschen
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Big Data Talent War: 10 Analytics Job Trends

A gap is emerging among data-savvy professionals, with big-data-analysis and predictive skills trumping routine business-intelligence and information-management talents.
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Trend 7: Big-Data Practitioners Seek 'Data Scientists'
Ancestry.com, the popular genealogy website, is a big data shop looking to hire. Scott Sorensen, Ancestry.com's senior VP of engineering, says the company is looking to hire 80 new tech employees in Provo, Utah, and San Francisco. Most new hires will fill routine positions as Web developers, database administrators and the like, but the company is also looking for a dozen big-data-savvy professionals, including a handful of data scientists.

What exactly is a data scientist? It's tough to find an authoritative definition, but Sorensen says it's someone who is "skilled in taking a statistical approach to algorithm development. Many times they're statisticians, and they understand how to create statistical models that allow you to use massive amounts of data to develop algorithms."

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D. Henschen
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D. Henschen,
User Rank: Author
3/28/2012 | 9:40:33 PM
re: Big Data Talent War: 10 Analytics Job Trends
Editors note: the following comment was received by e-mail and posted here on his behalf:

Great piece, Doug. In our work with manufacturers, equipment data in time series format is ever increasing and the move toward what we call G«£Industrial Big DataG«• is the trend. With better analytics, manufacturers are saving data at higher fidelity so time series signals from equipment can be gigabytes a day per equipment type. Trying to analyze this data over time when there are terabytes of data presents real challenges. Thanks for bringing Industrial Big Data to everyoneG«÷s attention.

Brian Courtney
General Manager, Operations Data Management
GE Intelligent Platforms
dbell947
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dbell947,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/15/2013 | 5:40:05 PM
re: Big Data Talent War: 10 Analytics Job Trends
Very interesting. My shop is definitely bucking the trend of the offshoring of "back office low level" projects. Virtually all our staffers with Big Data or advanced programming/ statistics/ app dev skills are being discouraged from applying those skills in favor of manual report generation/ extract generation/ and low level data cleaning clerk typist duties. All the more complicated (or interesting) projects are outsourced or contacted out. This appears to be used to justify low pay scales (i.e., help desk pay for BI) in lieu of paying more for higher talent. The strategy is to outsouce the big ticket talent to show how cheap such skills are in order to reduce pay scales for such talent. Then, reduce the pay skills and work environment for all. So far that has worked in that many higher skilled staff have either quit or are looking at working elsewhere. What we have left are staffers who know nothing about fundamental data structures, algorithms, OOD, statistical mechanics, etc. Most are, at best, hack programmers in SQL and as much Java as one community college course can teach. Definitely degenerates the workplace environment and lowers the paycheck values.

Wonder if this is true of other shops?
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