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How do you really become a data scientist? What you should know about training, salary and tasks

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The demand for digital professionals has increased tremendously. According to the digital association Bitkom, more than 96,000 jobs in the IT industry were vacant in 2021. At the same time, the technology industry can be found at the top of many rankings, for example when it comes to the employee satisfaction or wages. But jobs in the IT industry can be very different: from software developers to IT administrators to scrum masters. A job profile that is also sought after in many companies is data scientist.

But what exactly is that and what are the requirements for this job? Here you can read what the job profile is like, what training you need and how much you can earn in this position.

What does a data scientist do?

Many cannot imagine exactly what the job description “data scientist” means. A data scientist is responsible for structuring, processing, and evaluating data. This means: In the company or project you work on, there is a large amount of data that you have to process and evaluate.

For example, if you work as a data scientist for an online store, you will receive data on how customers behave, which pages they click on, which products they buy or which points they cancel. Your task now is to structure and interpret this data and make it understandable to others. Their analytics can be used, for example, to see which products are searched for, bought or returned most often, or what customers who have already bought a different product like.

So you examine the data, apply analytical methods, and can use them to make forecasts. Wherever companies generate large amounts of data, they also need data scientists to be able to evaluate it.

What education is needed to work as a data scientist?

The work of a data scientist consists of several disciplines: computer science, statistics, business administration and mathematics. So it can help you if you have studied any of these topics. However, data scientist is a new profession, so there is no fixed prescribed training path yet. Some universities in Germany offer courses. Degrees in mathematics, computer science, linear algebra or analysis, probability theory, or statistics are usually required to earn a master’s degree.

In fact, there are also many training and higher education offers. Ling Cheng, a data science manager at Glassdoor, told Business Insider that many people in other professions train to be data scientists. “There are numerous boot camps, online courses, continuing education courses, and online communities.”

Therefore, it is also possible as a career changer to find a job as a data scientist. Cheng says that he must have some technical and business knowledge that he can learn, for example, in advanced training courses. These are for example:

  • dealing with SQL

  • Programming languages ​​such as R, Python, Java, C/C++

  • data modeling

  • Board

  • Various big data tools like Hadoop

Data specialist Mina Saidze, who taught herself to code when she changed careers, told Business Insider: “I keep hearing people say they want to learn to code. But that can mean a lot because there are so many different programming languages. , such as Java, Python, or SQL. You’d better ask yourself: Why do I want to learn this? What problem do I want to solve?”

For example, if you want to develop websites, you must first learn HTML, CSS, and Javascript, he advises. “And the most important thing is: Apply what you have learned, link it to a user case. People often pay a lot of money for expensive online courses or books, but then find that they can’t apply their knowledge at all.”

How much does a data scientist earn?

According to the job comparison platform kununu, most data scientists in Germany earn an average of 63,900 euros per year. The starting salaries of employees with less than three years of professional experience range between 46,500 and 55,800 euros per year.

With more professional experience, specialization and personal responsibility, you can also earn significantly more: according to Kununu, there are salaries of up to 100,000 euros a year. According to Kununu, data scientists earn above average in the industrial, automotive and internet sectors in particular.

This article was last updated on March 15, 2022. It was released on March 14, 2022.

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