Big Data Requires Big Talent


Once upon a time, the IT industry was fighting with a “Talent Crunch.” It couldn’t find enough people to hire, so the talent crunch grew. It tried different tricks, but still there were no workers who could keep up with the changing IT industry, so the talent crunch kept growing and growing. Then along came Big Data and the IT industry thought the talent crunch would become monstrous…

Does that story ring a familiar bell to you? You are not alone! I know it does to several colleagues and associates. The IT industry has been struggling with the talent crunch for a while. With advances in data collection, data analysis tools and decision making based on intelligence gleaned from data, there is more need than ever to put together teams that work seamlessly.

As companies become aware of the benefits of collecting and analyzing data, they are drawn to the ability to use data for decision making. Data Science is at the core of this new world of Big Data and Business Intelligence.  However most of the successful Big Data projects are not started with scientific inquiry, but they are started with one simple question – “how can we improve business efficiency with the data that we have?”

When you are ready to do something with the data you have, the first step is to spend time to form your Big Data team with “big talents.” You need thinkers, cleaners, analyzers, designers and inspectors on your team. The right team will help you get data insights for your business growth. The time spent in forming the right team upfront will pay huge dividend later. Instead of finding one perfect candidate or 100% matching candidate, you need to look at the mix of skills in your team. You will have some overlapping skills and not everyone on the team will be a data scientist jock.

These are the typical roles and responsibilities you will need:

Business Intelligence Strategist / Program Manager: Understands the big picture of organizations’ Big Data, data sources, its expected outcome and Business Intelligence.

Business Analyst – Understands which business units are interested in getting which kind of intelligence from data.

Data Architect – Finds where data resides, its format, and then pulls it together and cleanses it.

Data Visualization / Business Intelligence Architect – Devises methods to present data in a format that’s understandable and chooses appropriate tools of the trade.

Business Intelligence Analyst / Developer: An expert in BI tools who can design and create reports and dashboards quickly.

Data Scientists – Interprets the trends presented in the data, understands what is causing the trends, and helps executive management make the right decisions.

If you need to discuss this further, GDI is here to answer your questions and help you build your own team.

Oh, and regarding that fight between the IT industry and the talent crunch – we’ll tell you more about it next time.

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