The Top 6 Data Jobs Seeked by Employers

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The advent of Big Data is now a reality. In France, many specialists estimate that nearly 45% of companies are in the process of restructuring to seize the opportunities offered by data. Data professions are fuelling strong trends in almost all sectors of activity. With machine learning, new mobility, the internet of things and even ecology, data is now everywhere! Its professions are, therefore, a career choice that is all the more relevant as they are characterised by enormous demand, as well as a notable shortage of qualified talents.

As in any emerging field, Big Data is on the move and its professions are therefore evolving very quickly with it. According to an analysis of calls for tenders and the allocation of business budgets in this sector, six professions emerge. These professions will be the future of data in the coming years and will, above all, be the most requested by employers. 

We’re going to reveal these new jobs to you along with the skills to master to qualify for them. But let’s start by delving into the future of data!


The future of data professions

All the signs are green with regards to the future of data professions. Let’s start with a report from IDC in which it is estimated that global data production will increase from 45 zettabytes in 2019 to 175 zettabytes in 2025. 

Other trends are forcing companies to recruit new experts. This is, for example, the case with new regulations such as the GDPR in Europe. This legislation regulates the use of data and strengthens its protection, requiring a Data Manager at each company. 

In addition, organisations are collecting ever greater volumes of data online. Being able to isolate this data and process it to offer your organisation a competitive advantage is therefore a highly sought-after skill!

A talent shortage in a context of high demand

Those who go into data thus have the advantage of starting a career in a sector in which there are more positions than qualified candidates to fill them. On average, job offers in Big Data remain open five days longer than in other sectors! This is an indicator that the competition is less fierce and that recruiters are more willing to wait to find the right candidates.

LinkedIn has also observed a 650% increase in data jobs since 2012. Glassdoor confirms this observation with job vacancies growing from 1700 in 2016 to around 6500 in 2020. 

Data experts are therefore increasingly needed in virtually all sectors of activity, beyond just new technologies. However, to gain a foothold in Big Data and land the most challenging and best-paid positions, specialised and in-depth training will generally be essential. KDnuggets believes that the data professions are among the most educated. In fact, 88% of them have at least a master’s degree and 46% have a PhD.

Now let’s see what these so sought-after professions are!


Data Job #1: Data Analyst, a position in high demand!

Are you looking for a position in which you can help your company with the operational aspects of managing their data?

The Data Analyst is certainly one of the most complete data professions. You will be in charge of visualising the extraction and processing of massive amounts of data. At the same time, you will also have to perform queries on these databases.

Your main quality? Optimisation. The Data Analyst must create and modify algorithms that can be used to extract information from huge databases, all without risking corrupting them.

Demand of this profession has been rising sharply since 2016, in particular due to the transition made by an increasing number of companies from traditional BI (business intelligence) systems to Big Data.

How can you become a Data Analyst?

The Data Analyst must master Big Data technologies (mainly Hadoop, SQL, R, SAS and Python). They are also supposed to understand data management techniques (formatting, distributed architecture, streaming management and API, among others). Certification in these areas can therefore easily give your applications a boost.

Another important point is to highlight your problem-solving and analytical skills.


Data Job #2: Data Engineer  

Data Engineers create and test scalable Big Data ecosystems. Their role is crucial within the company, since they allow Data Scientists to run their algorithms on stable and optimised data systems.

Data Engineers also update existing systems with newer versions or upgrades to current technologies. They therefore ensure the optimal efficiency of the company’s databases.

How can you become a Data Engineer?

If you are interested in data professions and a career as a Data Engineer, develop practical experience in technologies like Hive, NoSQL, R, Ruby, Java, C ++ and Matlab.

You will also stand out if you are able to work with data APIs, as well as the most popular ETL tools.


Data Job #3: Database Administrator

The role of a Database Administrator is pretty self-explanatory. You will be responsible for the proper functioning of all databases at your company. 

They will also count on you to grant or revoke services to company employees according to their needs. The Database Administrator is also responsible for backing up and restoring databases.

How can you become a Database Administrator?

Among the skills and talents that a Database Administrator must have, we mainly find knowledge of backup protocols and database recovery.

To find yourself a place in data professions, you will also need to be comfortable with data security, modelling and design. If you are good at risk management, do not hesitate to mention it in your CV!

Data Job #4: Data Architect

The Data Architect (or Big Data, depending on the scope of the project on which you will be working) is one of the more technical and functional data professions. 

On the one hand, you will have to decide on the relevant technological building blocks to solve a specific problem. Your role will also be to integrate it into the IT architecture of your company or, if necessary, to modify it to make it as well-integrated as possible.

As a Data Architect, your mission is also to ensure that Data Engineers have the best tools and systems to work as efficiently as possible.

How can you become a Data Architect?

A career in data architecture requires expertise in data warehousing, data modelling and extraction transformation and lending (ETL).

Your future employer may also ask you to master data warehouse infrastructure tools such as Hive, Pig and Spark.


Data Job #5: Machine Learning Engineer

Machine Learning Engineers are undoubtedly one of the most requested data professions. Nevertheless, this high demand has its challenges.

In addition to having in-depth knowledge of some of the most powerful technologies (such as SQL, REST APIs, etc.), Machine Learning Engineers also need to perform A/B testing and build data pipelines. That’s not to mention the implementation of standard machine learning algorithms such as classification and grouping! In short, this advanced knowledge requires specialised training.

How can you become a Machine Learning Engineer?

To begin with, you will need to have good knowledge of technologies like Java, Python and JS. Also consider developing strong skills in statistics and maths. Mastering these two aspects will make it much easier for you to land a job interview!


Data Job #6: Data Scientist 

Of the data professions, the Data Scientist is certainly one of the most interesting. Indeed, it mixes a strategic dimension with in-depth data analysis, making it a popular profession. Data Scientists are, in fact, in charge of understanding the challenges facing companies and proposing the best possible solutions based on data analysis and processing.

To give you an idea of how this profession can be applied, you should start with predictive analytics and comb through “unstructured or disorganised” data. This is to provide actionable information to your employer. You will also be led to identify trends and patterns that can help the company make better strategic decisions. This profession is at the crossroads between business and data!

How can you become a Data Scientist?

To be recruited as a Data Scientist, you must be an expert in R, MatLab, SQL, Python and other complementary technologies. A higher degree in mathematics or computer engineering will also be a plus!

To ensure you have the longest possible career in the data professions, consider adding other strings to your bow. Despite the visibility it enjoys (due in particular to its role in artificial intelligence), the profession of Data Scientist is experiencing a slight decline. This decrease is mainly due to the decline in industrial data science projects.


Data professions with a future: Honourable mentions 

Even though they didn’t have a place in this top six of the most requested data professions, it’s important to mention:

  • The statistician: responsible for extracting and providing valuable information from clusters of data. They also help to create new methodologies applied by Data Engineers;
  • The business analyst: their role is mainly to sort data according to its value. Then they identify the data which will be the most interesting for the growth of the company.
  • The data and analysis manager: they oversee data science operations and assign tasks to their team.