What skills should data scientists have in 2016?

What skills should data scientists have in 2016?

By Justin Tenuto

It's a brand new year and that means you'll be seeing scads of trend pieces this week. As you can probably assume from the title, we're not necessarily immune to that sort of thing ourselves. That said? Ours isn't based on analysts and insider opinion. It's based on real live data–in this case, thousands of LinkedIn job openings for data scientists.

What we were looking for is pretty apparent if you read this tremendously high-concept title: what are the most in-demand skills in the data science field?

The job itself was actually pretty simple. We first pulled about 3500 relevant job openings from LinkedIn. We looked at postings for data scientists and analysts at every level–from intern to associate to senior to VP–then asked our contributors to visit each posting and note which common skills were present in each. The results?

The answer to our question, then, is get your SQL on. Hadoop, Python, Java, and R round out our top five in-demand skills. It's worth noting that we didn't ask about Excel skills and that's still something you see in myriad job listings. Old habits die hard.

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Tags: data, python, science, skills


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Comment by george twohig on February 11, 2016 at 10:07am

This is consistent with what I am seeing and using, although we are using more R than Python. I also agree with Anja - the data engineers are taking on more of the data pipeline development, freeing the data scientists to focus on the algorithms.

Comment by Leena Kamath on February 10, 2016 at 8:03am

Very well said, Anja. A mix of core programming skills PLUS knowledge of business content and context is the perfect combo. #FTW

Comment by Anja Šostar on February 10, 2016 at 1:46am

I am sure that in next 5 years programming skills (for data scientists) will become less important, the main focus will be in business content. The main skill will be how to bring new knowledge from data mining process into a competitive advantage for company.

Comment by Phoebe Anderson on February 9, 2016 at 2:00pm
This is definitely true my world (Talent/People Analytics).
Comment by Eugene De Los Santos on February 9, 2016 at 1:21pm
For me, functional programming in Scala and Apache Spark

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