6 ideal roles for entry-level data scientists

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Becoming a data scientist is a career opportunity in high demand, but what jobs exist for those just starting? First, let’s take a quick look at what data science is, then check out some of the best entry-level data science jobs available!

Being a data scientist means having a talent for statistics and vital technical skills. Data science is essential across many organisations and is needed in nearly all industries.

What does it involve? When you’re working as a data scientist, you’ll be extracting valuable knowledge from raw data, obtaining actionable insights, producing results from the data that allow businesses to understand customer behaviour and market trends, and developing predictive models that increase efficiency and satisfaction – and much more.

Learning from the data is how a data scientist can provide solutions to real-world issues by using statistical methods, programming languages, and algorithms. There are many ways a data scientist can do this, but the five main steps are:

The first step when projects are started from scratch is to capture all the necessary data. By acquiring the available data, the data scientist extracts the information into a medium that is easily used and is concerned with data entry and signal reception.

Next, data maintenance is conducted. This includes: data cleansing, staging, processing, and creating a data architecture. Maintaining and organising the data’s home is vital.

Following that comes data processing. This is when data scientists work with stakeholders to determine what needs to be captured and how that data should be processed and viewed.

It also encompasses data mining, classification, modelling, and summarisation. Data analysis, which can sometimes fall under machine learning, includes confirming data, predictive analysis, regression, text mining, and qualitative analysis.

Finally, there is data communication: presenting the knowledge they’ve gained from the data to relevant stakeholders.

As with anything, when you’re just starting out it can feel almost impossible to get that first job. But the good news for data scientists (or anyone considering entering the field) is that the employment of data scientists is set to increase by 22 percent by 2030, outgrowing nearly every industry.

1. Junior Data Engineer

Entry-level data engineers develop, maintain and manage data feeds and pipelines. Ensuring the information extracted for business purposes is accurate, their role is to fix bugs and any flaws in the data system. Data scientists run their algorithms in the data systems that the engineers have built.

The engineers are also responsible for ensuring the system is up to date, upgrading it to the latest technologies when needed. It is great to have a working knowledge of APIs and ETL tools and be confident in Hive, NoSQL, R, Ruby, Java, C++, and Matlab.

The roles and responsibilities of a junior data engineer include:

  • Determining value databases
  • Improving automated extraction systems
  • Cleaning and organising structured and unstructured data
  • Categorising patterns and trends from data analytics
  • Engaging machine learning principles to create algorithms and predictive models
  • Applying visual features and methods to design presentations
  • Developing business outcomes

2. Junior Machine Learning Scientist

This high-demand role might come with challenges due to it being a relatively new industry role, though it does come with a range of benefits and opportunities. What is needed in this role is a comprehensive understanding of complex technologies like SQL, REST APIs, etc. and an ability to implement A/B testing, create data pipelines, and apply standard machine learning algorithms such as classification and clustering.

It is also essential to have an inclusive knowledge of statistics, mathematics, and programming languages such as Java, Python and JS.

The roles and responsibilities of a junior machine learning scientist include:

  • Planning and creating machine learning systems
  • Investigating machine learning algorithms
  • Assessing machine learning procedures
  • Building apps and products for client requests
  • Extending existing frameworks
  • Studying and visualising data for a clear understanding
  • Training and retraining systems

3. Junior Database Administrator

The role of a database administrator is primarily concerned with the management of data, as well as ensuring the security and maintenance of it. The efficient functioning of data is their responsibility, as well as database ups and recoveries.

Ensuring the integrity and accessibility of the information is done through tools like Oracle DB, IBM DB2, and MySQL, and it doesn’t hurt to have skills in disaster management either.

The roles and responsibilities of a database administrator include:

  • Updating, managing and maintaining data structures
  • Coordinating the development of database systems
  • Involvement in database design and development
  • Undertaking security measures for database
  • Data archiving
  • Preparing reports, documentation, and operating manuals
  • Working with programmers and project managers to meet strict deadlines and project success

4. Junior Business Analyst

Business analysis concerns how the data can be transformed into actionable business insights contributing to business growth, efficiency, and satisfaction. They understand both sides by acting on a link between data engineers and management executives.

They can comprehend business intelligence, finances, and information technologies such as data modelling and visualisation. Relying heavily on data and using related principles, business analytics can identify business needs and provide solutions, including software deployment, policy changes and even organisational restructuring. Business analysis aims to facilitate and deliver strategic business operations.

Business analytics relies heavily on data. Analysts can identify business needs and cater to them using related principles. In contrast, the solutions they provide may include some software deployment. They may also include a policy change or organisational restructuring in some cases. However, business analysis facilitates strategic business operations.

The roles and responsibilities of a junior business analyst include:

  • Comprehending the business of the company
  • Providing meticulous business analysis that includes outlining potential problems and their corresponding solutions
  • Developing opportunities for improvement and potential in the pre-existing processes
  • Conducting detailed business analysis and outlining issues
  • Analysing, designing, and implementing new technology and systems

5. Junior Data Architect

The role of a data architect is to develop the foundations for data management in such a manner that it is centralised, can be easily integrated, and has full security measures. Essentially, their job is to maintain the integrity of a database structure within an organization, ensuring the data engineers are provided with the best system to work with.

From data collection to data processing and, finally, data management, architects provide IT support through their expertise in data warehousing, modelling, and extraction, transformation and loading (ETL). They have a comprehensive understanding of big data operating tools such as Hive, Pig, Spark, etc.

The roles and responsibilities of a junior data architect include:

  • Creating a data strategy that corresponds with the aims of the business
  • Isolating data collection sources that relate to data strategy
  • Collaboration with other departments and stakeholders
  • Development and handling of end-to-end data architecture
  • Supporting database architecture efficiently and securely
  • Undertaking regular auditing and improving when needed

6. Junior Data Analyst

Processing vast quantities of data, visualisation and munging (transforming) are just some of the tasks data analysts are responsible for. In addition to this, performing queries on databases is also required.

An essential skill in undertaking this role is optimising output due to working with such high volumes of data through creating and modifying algorithms that remove information without corrupting it. A well-versed knowledge of SQL, R, SAS, and Python is needed alongside the ability to solve problems on the fly.

The roles and responsibilities of a junior data analyst include:

  • Creating and managing databases
  • Examining datasets to determine trends
  • Performing data analysis and make recommendations from the reports
  • Extracting data using automated tools

If you’re keen to get involved in the fascinating world of data science, don’t let yourself be put off by the thought of being entry level. There are still a huge range of potential career paths and opportunities that upskilling in data science can provide you.

The increasing demand for skilled workers of all experience levels in this industry means that there is no time like the present to expand your skill set. This ever-evolving industry is an excellent opportunity for those wanting to work in a fast-paced environment with transferable skills across multiple fields. To take the first step towards a career in data science, contact one of our course advisors today to find out more.

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