A career in Data Science & Artificial Intelligence – Is it worth it?

Data science is one of the most challenging domains. Several leading organizations of the world including Harvard Review have called it a promising field of career. By numbers, it is also one of the highest paid jobs around the world. The average salary of a Data Scientist is $128,750.

This is more than the average salary of any tech job. In fact, AI, of which data science is a part has garnered huge popularity among those looking to start career in tech. In the last few years, there has been phenomenal growth in the demand for AI related roles.

Unfortunately, there’s a huge gap in the demand and supply of Data Scientists. According to a Linkedin Study, businesses around the world need at least 150, 000 more data scientists in US alone.  In fact, presently, a lot of positions are unfilled. Companies are struggling to find qualified AI professional. This has resulted in companies hiring foreign nationals and paying them over the top salaries.

The primary reason for this are the skills required for this role. Data science requires an extensive set of skills. From statistics to machine learning algorithms, it keeps you on your toes. Crunching huge amount of data is a sisyphean task and data scientists are required to do all. Lucrative salaries and demand for job opportunities in data science related jobs make it a perfect time for anyone to learn the required skills and get a job. At present, data science careers are among the most rewarding ones.

Further, AI professionals too are in great demand. According to a report from Economic Times, there is huge demand for professionals with skills in NLP (Natural Processing Language). This gives a perfect opportunity for those who are yet to start their tech career to get skilled in latest AI technologies and carve a career in it.

These are some of the roles that are hugely in-demand and pay good salaries–

  1. Data Analyst– This one requires good analytical skills. Additionally, one needs to have good hands-on knowledge of technologies including statistics, R, Python, Excel and more.According to Springboard, the average salary of a Data Analyst is between $51,939.
  2. Statistician — These Assist Data Scientists to derive accurate conclusions. For this role, one needs to have extensive knowledge of applied statistics. According to Payscale, the average salary of a Statistician is $85,433.
  3. Machine Learning Engineer — These are the people who work on making machines learning. They are required to have good hands-on experience with computer vision, NLP and other sophisticated technologies.

Other than these there are Data Engineers, Big Data Engineers, NLP Experts and more.  All these roles require extensive knowledge and hands-on experience with several technologies. All in all, there has been an increase in number of AI related jobs. However, there’s gap between demand and supply of talent in this space. Certifications and other mediums to learn these new technologies are available worldwide which can be helpful in learning the skills required for the role.

As the adoption of AI increases across the world, there will be demand for more skilled talent in AI. Even though, currently, there’s no competition in this space. Eventually, it will get more competitive. Those who are already here or get in it in the coming few years will have an advantage. All in all, it is worth striving for a career in AI.
However, to excel in this field will require rigorous effort and continuous skill learning.