How much do Data Scientists Earn
By Aditi Bhat
Storytelling is an art unique to a select few. Although potentially priceless, like every other art, it also has a price tag attached to it. More often than not, the price is potentially high. Now take the hotrod data. Merge it with storytelling to form a perfect amalgam of analytics and influence. What you get is the most sought after profession of the current times – a data scientist. And yes, the price to hire them is potentially high.
Why all the uproar?
Harvard Business Review mentioned Data Scientist as the ‘sexiest job of the 21st century’ in 2012. However, a few skeptics didn’t buy it all good. Against all cynicism, the profession saw a consistent growth over the years. It grabbed the top position in Glassdoor’s ranking of 25 best jobs in 2016.
The job space for data science professionals in India is next only to that of the US. The market for advanced analytics is hot. It is likely to grow over 30% Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR), and that of Big Data at a CAGR of over 25%.
The growth may be attributed to the rise of connected devices. Be it a smart refrigerator, a self-driving car, or a health band, data forms the core of delivering business value out of technology. Constantly evolving technology, advent of machine learning, and booming Indian IT industry, further promise the sector to have greater scope and increased demands.
With great responsibilities, comes great salary!
Indian IT sector has surpassed the borders of Bangalore and Hyderabad. New companies have mushroomed in other metropoles like Mumbai, Delhi-NCR and Kolkata, forecasting a dearth of close to 200,000 data analysts by 2018.
Soaring demands make a data professional highly sought after, reaping out an average salary of above 6 lpa. Established companies like Fractal, TCS or Oracle pay anywhere close to 9 lpa. Start-ups have up the ante by paying as high as 12lpa.
What matters the most?
Although tool knowledge is not the only way up the data science ladder, it does hold the key to better compensation. Expertise and experience in tools like R, Python, SAS, SPSS influences the salary and manifolds it.
Open source tool ‘R’ ranks first in popularity and an expertise in the same helps professionals bag an offer anywhere above 10 lpa. Python, SAS and SPSS follow the trail closely.
However, reliability over one tool comes with its own limitations. Companies today are preferring professionals with multiple tool expertise. A professional with all the aforementioned four tools under his pocket may easily demand a CTC above 12 lpa.
Similarly, big data professionals might score slightly higher than the core data science professionals. However, a master of both would land up easily above a 13 lpa compensation.
Ages like a fine wine!
The salary of data professionals grows exponentially with their experience. A five-year experienced data analyst may expect a hike of around 70%. The average salary, in that case, being well beyond the 12 lpa mark.
Reports suggest that a decade long experience in data industry may springboard the salaries by a whopping 250%, leading the CTC to above 30 lpa. However, it is important to realize that as the pyramid gets higher, it is the business acumen and ease of telling a story out of the data that matters.
Nonetheless, it is clear that if you are clouded by the thought of taking up a career that will keep your bags full, then data science is the field to plow. Be it a Data Analyst, Data Architect, Data Scientist, or any other data science profession, the scope is wide and the prospects bright. All one needs is the knack for data and some wizardry over words.