The very nature of data science and machine learning means that it’s a field that is constantly evolving and innovating, so it’s essential to stay up-to-date with the latest technologies and developments.
Recent research conducted by Deloitte Access Economics into the future of occupational and educational data science trends in Australia has revealed that the number of specialists in the field is expected to increase by 38,000 by 2021-22.
This growth rate is indicative of the fact that 76% of Australian businesses plan on increasing investment in analytics capabilities in the next two years, but what are the key skills that employers are looking for and how can you gain them?
The importance of lifelong learning
It goes without saying that continuous, lifelong learning will improve your skill set, and this is certainly not an exception in the field of data science. Undertaking further study in data science is an excellent way to strengthen existing skills, develop new skills and progress your career. Formal qualifications will not only offer valuable knowledge and experience, but they can set you apart from your peers and be the deciding factor in a job interview.
So, what can you do to be a lifelong learner?
Here are some tips:
1. Industry trends – It’s worth staying on top of the relevant trends in your industry, particularly across fast-growing sectors such as healthcare, FMCG or finance. These trends can directly impact your day-to-day work or current projects. Follow these data science and analytics influencers for some fantastic insights and updates in the industry:
- Dean Abbott (@deanabb) is the co-author of IBM SPSS Modeler Cookbook and chief data scientist at Smart HQ
- Hilary Mason (@hmason) served as chief data scientist for Bitly and was named in the Fortune 40 under 40 list
- Kenneth Cukier (@kncukier) is the data editor for The Economist and presenter of Ted Talk ‘Big Data is Better Data’
- Lilian Pierson (@BigDataGal) is the author of ‘Data Science for Dummies’ and has her own YouTube channel explaining different data science concepts
- Andrew Ng (@AndrewYNg) specialises in deep learning and machine learning and was the founder of the Google Brain project.
2. Further study – online courses such as a Master of Data Science can be a part of a long-term career plan, by increasing your earning potential and broadening your career pathways.
3. Literature – Read up on the latest analytics literature using resources such as blogs, whitepapers, books and magazines specific to the industry.
These are our recommendations for data science and analytics blogs to watch out for:
4. Be aware of the job market – Analysing hiring trends and the wider job market is wise even if you aren’t on the hunt for a new job. Speaking with recruiters about opportunities and the most in-demand skills and tools needed can give you valuable insights.