Data is everything today, it runs the world, whether one is working in the tech industry or not, and hence, there is not a single industry or function that hasn’t be touched by or benefitted from data science. Solely going by one’s gut is thing of the past when it comes to running a successful business because the process of decision-making is being driven by data more than ever before. “What is your case? How can you use data science for that particular case? This makes all the difference.” Therefore, Shweta Doshi, co-founder of GreyAtom, predicts that data science is going to become an essential limb of every business. Moreover, women make awesome data scientists, she says, because it’s more than just technical skills.
Work towards becoming a holistic “T-shaped” professional
Data science is quite a loose term and there is a myriad of roles in the spectrum. At the entry-level, data analysis is the place to start to find correlations, after which, one can specialize in data visualization for key stakeholders, like in Python. Machine learning roles and full-stack data are also some other roles professionals can explore. Going a level deeper, you can concentrate on one area, like natural language processing, etc. Another branch is computer vision where you make predictions based on images. But, the important thing is that professionals need to figure out what their calling is so that they can become a “T-shaped” professional.
Companies are not blown away by certifications, but rather the evident skills & projects worked on
Hence, data scientists must be “eternal students”, taking the time to code up to stay in the know with what’s happening in the industry. There is always something new each month and to stay relevant, they must be educated on the latest libraries, etc. Ideally, spending two hours a day on upskilling, reading papers, problem-solving, attending virtual events and webinars, all of which can give your career a huge boost. However, don’t confuse certifications for skills, because, the industry is now deviating from certifications to skills and projects that candidates have worked on.
Transition to data science is possible with the right training and upskilling
Furthermore, organizations are also looking beyond LinkedIn for talent; platforms like GitHub are a great place to showcase your skills, projects, and all the code that you’ve written. In terms of transitioning to data science from another field, GitHub is great for this very purpose. So, what if one wants to get into it from a sales or marketing background? Shweta believes that although not easy, it’s possible; she has enabled many learners to do so. She suggests that people should identify what’s their superpower in their years of experience and then build data science on top of that. Take HR or marketing analytics, for example, which is a huge space. According to her, people are terrified of coming from a non-tech framework, however, with so many no-code ML tools available, it can be done.
Making the transition within your organization is the easiest because it is a familiar context and domain
But can you make the pivot within your existing organization? Of course, yes! If there are data projects within your organization, you can ask to contribute as a POC, while building up your technical skills on the side. More importantly, making the transition within your organization is the easiest because it is a familiar context and domain. With regards to life post-COVID-19, even though professional life has forever changed, Shweta reveals that this new normal has accelerated tech and as a result, the demand for data and data analytics will only increase.
GreyAtom focuses on hands-on and industry-focused learning
Three and a half years ago, Shweta Doshi and her co-founders started GreyAtom with the single goal to ensure that tech learning is aligned to the needs of the tech industry today; a tech boot camp of sorts. Starting as a computer science engineer, she has worked with top companies like Accenture and Nielson. 2015 was when she started working in data science and back then, the field was relatively new and therefore, the need was hands-on and industry-focused learning. Hence, they set out to bridge this learning gap. Since its inception, GreyAtom has been pivoting and upskilling professionals in different areas of emerging technologies like AI, data science, deep learning, natural language processing, computer vision, and also full-stack web development. An incredible tech-focused company, Shweta’s focus is to enable every learner from their programs can start working in their areas and be the best they can be.
Image credit: Outlook India