Data scientists in demand as 80% of companies look to hire

New twist in the UK digital skills crisis as the vast majority of companies look to hire in computer science expertise next year. The Data Surge report, conducted by MHR Analytics surveyed 200 business leaders on attitudes to big data, skills and planning for 2019

by News Reporter on 25 September 2018 09:58

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Data scientists are in high demand as UK companies look to increase digital skills outputs for 2019, according to a new poll from MHR Analytics. The findings form part of the company’s Data Surge report, which polled 200 business chiefs from across the country on hot topics such as digital skills, data expertise and IT strategy for next year.

Of the businesses surveyed by MHR Analytics, one third (34 percent) said they would definitely be hiring a data scientist or specialist, with 45 percent saying they were considering such a move. Only 22 percent ruled out extra investment in big data expertise completely. However, many of the organisations polled failed to recognise that successful data management can reduce operational overheads, with only four per cent citing reduced administration as a benefit.

Instead, 25 percent cited more accurate decision-making and 20 percent said better understanding of business information was a key outcome.

Nick Felton, MHR Analytics senior vice president said, “It’s now clear that 2019 will be the year of the data surge, with eight in 10 companies seeking specialist skills and expertise to help navigate potentially uncertain market conditions. Many organisations have now switched onto the fact that data analytics improves forecasting and enables more accurate decision-making. Data scientists are increasingly being relied on to give the clear picture when it comes to strategic business planning. What’s striking in our research though, is that so many organisations are overlooking the potential for cost savings associated with a smarter data strategy, which can help reduce costs and admin.”

Felton continued, “A good data strategy can improve efficiency across the whole of the organisation. IT can provide unrivalled visibility into real time business information and help identify future opportunities as well as potential risks to profitability.” A third (34 percent) of the companies polled by MHR Analytics said they have considered a data strategy, which is in the further stages of implementation. 30 percent said they regularly conduct big data projects and only seven percent say there have been no talks regarding a data strategy. More than half (51 percent) said their organisation’s response to the challenge of big data had been good, with 21 percent saying it had been very good.

The Data Surge Report and survey was conducted by independent polling company Censuswide.

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