Data Scientist Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A Data Scientist, or Data Analyst, analyses raw data and turns it into meaningful information that companies can use to improve their business processes. Their primary duties include analysing large data sets, creating algorithms that manage and organise information and writing applications that translate data and identify patterns. 


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Data Scientist duties and responsibilities

A Data Scientist uses a range of coding practices to build scalable data products. Some of their duties and responsibilities include:

  • Generating large databases from various sources of structured and unstructured data
  • Analysing data and generating statistical information to identify trends and patterns 
  • Understanding the phases of product delivery and expert analyses across product life cycles, running the analysis for each stage and contributing to decision making
  • Using a range of programming languages to transform big data into data sets
  • Translating technical data to simple language and giving recommendations and conclusions to stakeholders
  • Developing interactive dashboards that combine visuals with real-time data
  • Building scalable machine learning pipelines and using feature engineering and optimisation methods to improve data set performance  
  • Working with Technologists to integrate and separate data feeds to map, produce, transform and test new scalable data sets


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Data Scientist Job Description Examples:


Example 1

Are you a machine learning expert? Are you good with data and programming? We’re on the hunt for a talented Data Scientist to work with large data sets for a fast-growing software company that uses AI to boost productivity and engagement! Work with dynamic datasets, solving problems and giving insight Help build and improve tools to train, monitor and analyse performance and data quality Develop statistical models, algorithms and new ways to collect data Work with designers on collecting user data for training model purposes Test, evaluate and improve the analytical results on live systems Must-haves: Some experience with testing frameworks [website] PyTest) Have previously worked with multiple Machine Learning techniques as well as python Machine Learning Experience in design and usage of relational databases (SQL, PostgreSQL) A good understanding of Docker Benefits: Share options A generous yearly learning budget Fun monthly socials A flexible working culture - 3 days in an East London office and 2 from home Flexible hours A generous salary of £25k - £35k If you have an eye for data and analytics, a passion for machine learning and the drive to join a fast-growing startup, apply to this exciting Data Scientist job now and we’ll try to get back to you within 5 working days! About DigitalGrads: Is your CV holding you back? Are you fed-up being ghosted by recruiters? Or tired of being rejected after interviews? Finding a graduate job can be brutal. Competition is fierce. Before you know it, everyone who you went to university with has a new job and you’re still living at home. You apply for countless jobs every day and don’t hear a word back - it’s soul destroying! DigitalGrads’ free training, internships and exclusive job opportunities are here to help you kick-start your career in the tech industry. We'll help you prepare for life after uni, make confident career decision and get hired by the hottest tech start-ups in the UK.

Example 2

First Derivatives plc is a global leader in consulting, business services and technology. We are the home for diverse thinkers and innovators. We know that our people are vital to our success and we are proud of the diverse and vibrant team we have built across the globe. We are committed to hiring top talent, creating an environment where they can thrive, and recognizing and rewarding their dedication as they progress within the company. To meet the growing demand for our technology and services, we are currently recruiting for our Graduate Options Programme. Options Program – Data Science: On the Data Science stream of our Options Graduate Scheme, you will be offered a unique opportunity to enter the Big Data world where the emphasis is on problem-solving using a combination of analytics, imagination and business understanding. Data Scientists explore vast amounts of information to detect patterns, trends and correlations that enable our clients to improve their products, services and revenue. As a Data Scientist, you will work with our clients at their office sites, so you must be willing to travel extensively. The projects you may be working on will vary – our clients range from financial services to manufacturing to telecoms, just to name a few! What we look for: An inquisitive mindset, an aptitude for problem-solving and technical skills to combine them Excellent communication skills to present findings and articulate their business benefits. Experience with Java, C/C++ and/or UNIX is beneficial but not a requirement A self-starter who is constantly looking for opportunities to improve Willingness to travel to various parts of the world to work with clients Strong academic background – ideally a 2.1 degree in Computing, Mathematics, Statistics, Data Science, Physics, Engineering or a similar quantitative discipline. Commitment to the 2 year training period, which rolls into a full-time permanent position Working for FD: At FD, you will embark upon a career with life-long learning at its core, facilitating rapid professional and personal development and the opportunity to design your own path. We support a variety of external training courses and accreditations and are truly passionate about our Mentor Program, through which our senior colleagues generously set aside personal time to coach and support others in their career progression. We are delighted to have several active internal networks, social committees, and charity initiatives, designed with the intention of meeting the holistic needs of our employees and giving back to our communities. Our employees are rewarded with numerous benefits as part of their employment, including: Competitive Salary Extensive Health Care Package Pension plan Employee Assistance Programme Annual leave increasing with service Group Life Protection Benefit Training opportunities FD Internal Network and Sports & Social Calendar Who are we? First Derivatives plc (FD) is a leading software and services company, with world-leading intellectual property in ultra-high-performance analytics (KX) across industries, and extensive domain expertise and capabilities in capital markets systems and technology (managed services and consulting). KX KX technology is designed to capture and analyze data to make real-time decisions in a world where data volumes generated by markets and machines are increasing exponentially, and existing technologies fail due to technological or commercial limitations. KX is widely adopted throughout the financial industry and is poised for accelerated growth across high-tech manufacturing, automotive, oil and gas, utilities, and telecommunications. First Derivative First Derivative provides a range of managed services and consulting worldwide to its clients in the capital markets sector, including many of the world’s leading banks, focused on supporting systems as well as helping them to achieve and maintain regulatory compliance.

What does a Data Scientist do?

Data Scientists interpret large amounts of unorganised, raw data. They analyse and synthesise data into results and findings that are more easily understood. Data Scientists must be good at machine learning  so that they can convert data into various forms and develop algorithms to solve problems. They must be proficient in a variety of computer programming languages and be capable of conducting advanced statistical analysis. They also communicate their findings to a company’s management in order to help them solve business problems or make informed business decisions. 


Data Scientist skills and qualifications

A successful Data Scientist candidate will have various prerequisite skills and qualifications that typically include:

  • Experience in data visualisation and presenting data in graph or pictorial format
  • Proficiency in designing algorithms and using statistical and problem structuring methods
  • Ability to clean and validate data to ensure uniformity and accuracy
  • Ability to use linear and non-linear regression, logistic regression, models and classification techniques for data analysis, clustering, dimensionality reduction, k-NN and pipeline
  • Proficiency in mathematical computing 
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Proficiency in various programming languages such as Java, C, Python, R along with strong coding skills


Data Scientist experience requirements

Data Scientist must have several years of experience using a variety of data analysis, data mining methods and data tools. They should also have years of experience using and developing algorithms, developing and implementing models and creating and running simulations. Some companies prefer candidates with experience in a particular field, such as database management, research, machine learning or artificial intelligence. 


Data Scientist education and training requirements

Data Scientist must have at least a master’s degree in data science, data analytics, business analytics or big data, though most companies prefer candidates who have a doctoral degree. Some employers accept candidates who hold a bachelor’s degree in statistics, information technology, computer engineering, computer science or applied mathematics. 

Some large companies offer data science graduate training programmes, which usually take around two years to complete. Some programmes accept graduates from any discipline. Others specify the degree subjects they will accept. Other companies also require candidates to obtain industry-recognised certifications, such as the Institute for Direct and Digital Marketing certification and the Chartered Institute of Marketing certification.


Data Scientist salary expectations

According to Indeed Salaries, the average salary of a Data Scientist in the United Kingdom is £53,963 per year. This figure varies depending on factors such as, experience, geographical location and company. 


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Data Scientist job description FAQs


What is the difference between a Data Scientist and a Data Analyst?

A Data Analyst figures out what happens to make certain outcomes occur, for instance, why sales dropped. They also create dashboards to support the key performance indicators (KPIs) of the company. A Data Scientist works with what will, or what could happen. To determine answers, they use data modelling techniques and big data frameworks.


How can you make your Data Scientist job description stand out?

Open with an attention-catching summary and include what makes your company unique. State the exact location of the job, so it appears higher in a job search. Outline core responsibilities using bullet points and give information on how the position fits into the company and how data mining is used.


What are the different types of Data Scientists?

There are many different types of Data Scientists. These include Reporting and ETL Analysts, who focus on extracting data and generating reports or dashboards, Data Science Generalists, who focus on using statistical and machine learning techniques to create models, solve business problems and generate insights and Machine Learning Research Data Scientists, who focus on applying machine learning techniques to develop and implement models, which an emphasis on research and development. Other types of Data Scientists include Machine Learning Software Engineers or Data Science Specialists. 

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