Data Science Is The New Rock & Roll

July 7, 2020  |  Mark Hillary

Every now and then there is a particular skill or discipline that just suddenly becomes important, especially in the IT industry. In recent years app developers suddenly found they were hugely in demand and before that it was coders who could quickly create interactive websites. Now it’s happening in data science.

As an academic discipline data science has existed for decades. Many universities have long-established departments that may have been running alongside the mathematics or statistics departments since the 60s or 70s.

But data science is developing a new importance in the business environment of 2020 because data mining, big data, unstructured data, and machine learning are all becoming important tools for modern companies struggling to handle vast quantities of data.

We are creating more data than ever before. The World Economic Forum has estimated that by 2025 we will be creating 463 exabytes of new data daily – that’s about 212 million new DVDs everyday. IBM has estimated that 90% of all the data that exists was created in just the past two years – and that is growing exponentially.

In 2019, 2.9 million data science job openings were created – this will certainly increase in 2020. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 11.5 million new jobs in data science will be created by the year 2026 – that’s just in the US. It is safe to say that if you want a secure future over the next few years then studying data science will help.

There are many applications for data science across many industries, but just to illustrate how wide-ranging the application of this technology really is think about some of these examples:

  • Agriculture: machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) will increasingly help with pricing, forecasting, and improving farm output.
  • Healthcare: companies like IBM already have oncology diagnostic systems. The application of AI in further health diagnostic systems will be a huge growth area.
  • Aviation: improving flight schedules, customer experience, planning maintenance are all area where airlines can use improved insights into the data they have.
  • Cyber Security: the ability to spot unusual activity inside a company by constantly analysing data on the network activity of all employees and customers
  • Customer Experience: being able to predict the behaviour of customers will be an important attribute for many different companies. Banks can predict customers who may default and retailers can predict what customers may want to buy.

Data science is changing how companies are organised. Many are stating that they see an ability to use AI as their future. So it’s a great place to seek a job, but if you are working in a company that has yet to explore the benefits of data science then it might be time to start thinking about an expert partner – before it’s too late.

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