How Data Science Became the Most Popular Job on the Market

In the past few years, data science has been the buzzword on the job market. Most people with data science careers have no regrets about studying data science in college. In recent years, however, there have been concerns that data science would lose its popularity as a job.

For over a decade, having data science credentials was really a big deal. Job offers for data science specialists came with excellent pay and a nice working atmosphere. Many professionals did not appear to regret studying data science in college since it offers a wide range of applications and better employment opportunities.


The Goal of a Data Science Career

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Data science is a vast discipline that has applications in almost every business area: production, education, medicine, finance, media, advertising, and the list goes on. Darshan Somashekar, a technology entrepreneur who has founded and sold two business startups, once said: “Data science is a combination of three things: quantitative analysis (for the rigor required to understand your data), programming (to process your data and act on your insights), and narrative (to help people comprehend what the data means).”

Data science includes forming hypotheses, doing experiments to collect data, assessing data quality, and structuring and analyzing data. It essentially involves theoretical and practical approaches along with big data, predictive analytics, and artificial intelligence (AI) applications.

The data science expert’s responsibilities typically include extracting insights from collected data, conducting predictive analytics on future market trends, and providing a data-driven customer experience. The data analytics are made with the aim of finding solutions to major public concerns and business problems.

According to LinkedIn, data science has shown a 650% job growth since 2012. And a person who studied data science can get employed as a data analyst, a research scientist, a machine learning (ML) engineer, or a data engineer.


Concerns About Data Science Losing Its Popularity

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Pursuing a data science career is viewed as an awesome career path. In 2012, The Harvard Business Review praised the data science career as “the sexiest job of the 21st century.” In 2019, LinkedIn declared that data science is “the most promising job” in their job listings. These days, however, there are some doubts if the data science career will be able to keep its status.

In 2019, Forbes, in its article Why There Will Be No Data Science Job Titles By 2029, predicted that data science jobs have become prominent as part of the technological hype cycle. Forbes also added that we recently passed the peak of inflated expectations with data science, and we are about to reach the trough of disillusionment. This is because several data science teams have failed to generate outcomes that business executives can use to assess in terms of return on investment (ROI). Besides, automation is taking over many of the capabilities that data scientists deliver, including ML. Furthermore, major cloud vendors are making significant investments in AutoML. 

On the other hand, Analytics Insight suggested that automation will be used as a supplementary tool to enhance data science jobs and make them more productive. Repetitive and simpler tasks can be handled by bots, while complex and problem-solving tasks can still be handled by data scientists. In addition, the collaboration of human problem solving and technology will boost the data science career rather than endanger it.


The Future Fate of Data Science Careers

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According to Towards Data Science, there are no sharp upturns or downturns. This might imply that data science will not vanish in the foreseeable future. If anything, there would be a gradual drop over time, of which there isn’t currently any evidence.

It’s evident that technological advancements are accelerating faster than ever. A significant number of changes are expected in many fields of careers, including data science positions. At some point in the future, there may be a possibility for all jobs to be replaced by AI. However, it is critical to recognize that data scientists possess valuable expertise that would be very difficult for AI to replicate any time soon.

In the long run, there may not be a data science career because technology may one day outsmart human capabilities. However, the applications of data science will always exist. Except that they would be run by machines.


Photo: Gorodenkoff/Shutterstock


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