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Businesses seek out data scientists to support big data initiatives

Cliff Saran

A large number of businesses are recruiting data scientists in a bid to build up the right skills to support board-level big data initiatives.

The One Poll survey of 300 senior executives in the UK, France and Germany for Teradata found

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that 42% of UK companies are looking to recruit data scientists in big data analytics roles.

But 58% of the executives asked said they were struggling to find candidates with the right mix of skills. Although technical experience remains of greatest importance, other essential attributes include problem-solving skills (cited by 43%, rising to 55% in Germany), analytical skills (42%) and creativity (35%).

The survey reported that 39% of UK CIOs and 12% of CMOs are pushing for additional resources to maximise big data analytics.

Executives said they were looking for a blend of skills to successfully implement big data analytics initiatives. The survey found that 37% of executives anticipate that potential candidates will come from existing employees with business skills, such as business intelligence or business analytics expertise, compared with 46% who expect recruits to have an IT background.

 

Over half (51%) of new recruits working on big data analytics projects will report to departments other than IT, rising to 63% in the UK. In almost one quarter (23%) of companies, the new team will report directly to the board.

“The survey found that there is no shortage of candidates with departmental expertise. By contrast, nearly half of those questioned believe that the real problem lies in finding more recruits with a more blended combination of business, IT, analytics and communications skills, a problem felt especially acutely by UK firms. This mix is essential to identify the huge competitive benefits which effective big data analysis can deliver,” said Duncan Ross, Director Data Sciences, Teradata International.