Profit From Big Data: IT Skills in Demand

Posted by Jeff Pelliccio on Oct 25, 2017 9:00:00 AM

In ICS insights

You have probably already read about the growth of big data. For instance, you may have seen statistics that demonstrate that more data has been accumulated within the past two years than in the rest of human history.To access that data, Google alone handles 40,000 queries per second, or about 1.2 trillion searches each year. In addition to collecting and accessing all of that data, companies also need ways to store information and make the information useful.

In order to understand why that matters to your particular business, it helps to consider some other facts about big data:

  • By doing a better job applying information from big data, healthcare could save an average of $1,000 each year for every person they serve.
  • For the largest enterprises, an increase in data accessibility of only 10 percent could help them earn an additional $65 million each year.
  • Today, less than half of one percent of data collected ever gets used.

What Skills Will Your IT Department Need to Profit From Big Data?

Of course, big data could impact all departments in your company. At the same time, the responsibility for collecting, storing, and serving that information usually falls upon your IT department. You will need the right IT specialists to perform these jobs.

Data specialists might be divided into data scientists and data engineers. Data scientists study information and data engineers handle the practical matter of making this information accessible.

This should provide some insight into specific IT skills that you may need to have in order to make the most of your information:

  • Data collection: Data engineers have to collect information before it can be used. Sources may include the internet, your own software and existing databases, and the IoT. To collect relevant information, data professionals will need to understand sources of data and how to access them.
  • Data warehousing: Your company will need a way to store all of that information in an affordable and efficient way. Data engineers need to know the best input, output, and storage methods. To do this, they need to understand that basics of the hardware, databases, and software that can handle large amounts of data.
  • Data transformation: Most of the time, reams or raw data must be formatted, summed, or grouped before it can be compared to other information or even become useful at all. This usually requires knowledge of specific systems and scripting languages.
  • Data analysis: Data scientists need to step in and make sense out of all of the numbers. As the final result of this analysis, these professionals may need to produce reports that clarify their findings for managers or clients. These professionals will need to understand the business, statistics, and software that can handle large amounts of information.

Does your business already have data engineers and data scientists available to perform these skilled tasks? If not, you should know that you may face a seller's market when you need to acquire skilled and experienced data professionals. For instance, CNBC listed data scientist as one of the most in-demand professions. Their analysis expected the demand to grow by about 16 percent within the next decade and for companies to pay well into six figures for experienced employees in this field.

Of course, companies that may expect to improve revenues by seven or even eight figures will compete to attract the best in the business. Other companies may choose to hire data professionals on a contract or temporary basis until they can train qualified employees who they can promote from within. Either way, companies will have to make some investment before they can enjoy returns from big data.

We Can Help Prepare Your IT Department for Big Data

Can your company enjoy growth through better collection, storage, or use of information? If so, you should know that we are already on top of your requirements. If you contact us today to tell us more about your business, we will start connecting you with the best people. We can provide your business with data professionals on a full-time, temporary, or consultant basis. 

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