The advancement of new technologies has generated an enormous amount of data and information that can be used to optimize services to consumers, anticipate trends or even carry out more appropriate medical diagnoses and treatments. However, analyzing all this data is not easy, not only because of its enormous volume but also because of its extraordinary variety and the speed at which it is produced. In this scenario, the figure of the Data Scientist is increasingly important.
What is a Data Scientist?
The Data Scientist is an expert in Data Science who applies his knowledge of programming, mathematics and statistics to data to collect, refine and process the relevant information it contains . This professional makes sense of structured and unstructured data by detecting patterns that add value to organizations and allow predicting future trends.
Unlike Data Analytics, the Data Scientist works with unstructured data and uses more advanced analysis techniques that not only allow him to propose solutions for specific problems but also to make long-term predictions, often in new and unknown scenarios. This professional scans the horizon to identify possible trends and define strategies for the future.
For example, a Data Analytics is responsible for estimating the impact of weather conditions on urban traffic based on historical data while a Data Scientist predicts the impact of autonomous cars or other emerging technologies on traffic.
The main functions of the Data Scientist
The functions of the Data Scientist vary according to the company or organization for which they work. However, there are some common tasks to this profession:
- Data extraction. The data can be extracted from different sources, from the web and mobile phones to social networks, the Internet of Things or the information collected by the companies themselves. The Data Scientist collects all this data to obtain as much information as possible.
- Data cleaning. Within the enormous body of data that is collected from different sources, some are more valuable than others, depending on the objective being pursued. The Data Scientist is in charge of purifying and eliminating all unnecessary data, choosing those that can add value and preparing it for processing.
- Data processing. The Data Scientist also processes the data using different statistical methods, mathematical analysis, clustering algorithms, and predictive or prescriptive methods. Then you must interpret the results to find hidden links between variables, make future forecasts or explain phenomena.
- Data visualization. The functions of the Data Scientist also include presenting their results, generally in the form of graphs, so that the rest of the people can understand them and make the necessary strategic decisions based on them.
What to study to be a Data Scientist?
The Data Scientist extracts the most out of data by providing valuable feedback for businesses and organizations that enables them to better understand the playing field and explore new possibilities. For this reason, this profile is being increasingly demanded in sectors such as banking, telecommunications, research and marketing.
Despite being one of the professions with the greatest future prospects, at the moment there are no approved degrees, so there is no single training path. Typically, this professional has completed university studies in Mathematics, Statistics or Computer Science.
In a second moment, he specializes with University Expert courses, such as our University Expert in Data Science and the Expert in Big Data , or studying a Master in Data Science , Big Data, Machine Learning or Advanced Statistics. In Spain, the salary of a Data Scientist ranges between 24,000 and 80,000 euros , depending on the responsibility and tasks of the position, as well as the experience of the professional.