Why Is There Increased Demand For Data Science Candidates?

No need to throw your hands up because we can help

There is undoubtedly an increase in the demand for data scientists so we thought we would take a look at the factors that are affecting the demand and also those factors impacting upon the lack of suitable candidates.

Not only have companies been using data science to handle their own data pre-Covid-19, but during the pandemic they have scaled up their data usage to measure the effects of the pandemic on their businesses in order to find solutions to newly-emerging problems.

The explosion within the sheer amount and complexity of data that each and every person produces thanks to our interactions with technology, has led to an urgent need for companies to mine, clean, sort and model that information in order to make sense of it in relation to their business.

The actual global value of data science has increased from around $4bn in 2019 to $64bn in 2021, which goes some way to demonstrate why everyone is requiring data scientists, and that is not counting other disciplines such as data analytics.

Before the pandemic, the role of data scientist was still very much in demand, being considered cool and displaying huge growth. The reason behind the heralding of data science to such a crazy height back then is possibly down to the fact that there is much overlap and misunderstanding between data science and the other newly emerging roles. When a hiring manager does not understand the differences between these seemingly similar roles, the job specs and hiring can draw in candidates who are then given more responsibilities, some of which are outside their skillset. A lot of the time the candidates just get on with it, tired of having to explain themselves and their role to management who are not listening. This can ultimately lead to projects falling behind because certain roles are stretching the data scientists or because there is just too much work to do in the allotted time. If ‘data scientist’ is considered a one-size-fits-all title, then of course when polls are done, it will seem that the only jobs in that realm are those of ‘data scientist’.

With the ramping up of data projects, the market for data scientist roles has bounced back from a lull during 2020 due to the pandemic and lockdowns affecting the economy. There was, even then, a demand for data scientists, even if the job boards didn’t reflect this, and there is even more of a demand now for those skilled individuals.

And there is no sign of a slowdown. Data is expected to be worth $103bn by 2027 and that is without taking into account those sectors connected to it either, which could lead to an increase of jobs of over 15 percent within the USA alone, probably mirrored globally.

With advances in technology, human beings’ data creation becomes more complex and increases constantly. As it improves, more businesses use and harness its uses. Something like the Cloud, which did not exist in its present form a decade ago, is becoming integral in how companies handle their computing, storage and data, and with this comes the need for more workers who can handle and control it.

A major factor in an even more increased demand is that firms are seeking to improve efficiency and use their data to grow their business beyond their traditional model. There has been an increase of data science courses in order to fill the skills gap, which is still a huge problem for companies filling the vacant or newly created roles.

Right now, the correctly qualified and experienced candidates are hard to find because they are already in roles where they are using those skills already. Only dedicated experts and partners know where to find them. It will take a while before the shortages can be corrected and until then, you either need to know where to look or you need to know someone who does.

Curious about how Zenshin Talent can help your organisation? Contact us today for a no-strings conversation about your needs and our experience.

What Is Behind Recent Recruitment Difficulties?

I spy with my little eye, we can’t recruit but why?

You will have heard about the fact that there are hundreds of thousands of job vacancies out there on the market. What you may not be so aware of are the difficulties in recruiting.

Post-lockdown positivity has led to a boom for jobseekers yet that boom may turn into a bust, as employers are finding it more and more difficult to track down candidates for the vacant job roles.

The UK and Ireland are currently experiencing the strongest growth in Europe.

After redundancies and job freezes last year, companies are looking to bounce back. Yet, of the 61% of companies that were recruiting in the 3rd quarter, 77% of them noted difficulties. There is enhanced customer demand but on the flipside, there are not enough employees to fill these roles.

The British Chamber of Commerce noticed that the number of businesses struggling with recruitment has been rising. The impact is huge and there is real fear that it will continue to rise for some time. The ManpowerGroup also noted an increase of 13% in hiring intention.

Half of those who took part in the BCC survey revealed that they had difficulty hiring skilled tech staff. We have highlighted this previously.

The service industry and manufacturing were hit hardest and both are on, or very near to, the highest number since the data started to be recorded. Consumer services are the least affected. Unskilled roles are affected too and it is this all-encompassing recruitment problem that makes it so unique, as it is touching every sector.

Companies experiencing this are shocked and frightened by this, not having experienced anything similar in recent memory. Full-time posts are most affected and within this fact, lies the most damaging trend. A lot of companies are raising the pay they offer but it makes no difference.

These shortages are having a serious impact on the economic recovery. The longer a vacancy goes unfilled, the less a firm can operate as it needs to.

Investment can help but things like apprenticeships take time to come to fruition, time that these companies don’t have. Some have criticised the government for this, and while they can certainly take some of the blame, they also can’t fix it quickly, with any initiatives they may put forth also taking time to come to fruition.

Rising rents, rising energy prices and pressure to increase wages that have stagnated, are all contributing to problems for companies. If the pressure continues unabated, those companies may fold in the near future.

So what is behind this. The main theory is that Brexit, which made migrant workers return to their home countries, or at least to go to another EU country where they still had a right to work, has contributed significantly. This has also led to a skills shortage. The UK skills shortage is also the largest in Europe.

Additionally, Covid-19 has had a two-fold impact, with an estimated 160,000 deaths, many of whom were of working age, and the self-isolation/pingdemic disrupting employees’ ability to go to work or commit to work. This has led businesses to increase wages but to no avail. Haulage firms have increased their pay by 20%, for example, just to get things moving.

Those businesses who had prepared for a shortage when Brexit came in have then been blindsided by the Covid-19-related perfect storm. It is going to be a tough winter and fingers crossed that visa problems can be solved, there are no more lockdowns, firms continue to employ specialist recruitment partners and we all have a very merry Christmas.

Curious about how Zenshin Talent can help your organisation? Contact us today for a no-strings conversation about your needs and our experience.

Why Is Everyone Resigning?

When your best employees are packing their boxes, you need to take action

One of the most interesting trends affecting recruitment recently has been the large wave of resignations so we thought it would be a good time to highlight and discuss this trend.

With resignation rates spiking, and the trend not looking to slow down any time soon, companies are having to deal with recruiting problems from multiple sources. Not only are there resignations, but candidates are harder to find, seeing as the power balance has swung back to the candidates and away from the employers, a fact a lot of businesses are still failing to get to grips with.

Voluntary turnover, especially in industries like tech, means replacements must be sourced from somewhere, somehow. This could indicate that they are being poached but in a field such as Cloud computing, experts are thin on the ground and can only be sourced by recruiters who know what they are looking for.

Plans for returning to the office, which are always up-in-the-air, have not yet happened fully to the degree that some businesses need. Working from home seems to be returning and looks like it will not go away any time soon. Burn out was a key reason for high turnover in the past 18 months but now it is about choice.

The brightest and best are leaving companies at a staggering rate, leaving those companies desperately scrabbling for replacements that match the calibre of ones who have just exited, and this impacts profits. Yes, there is always going to be turnover, but as turnover accelerates, instability within an organisation ensues.

A workforce empowered can make demands in a market that is bouncing back, so those who do not agree with the company’s ethos and no longer feel, or never have felt, valued will vote with their feet and walk. As we have said before, millennials and gen Z are looking for respect, meaningful work and good communication. Job satisfaction matters but why is it so difficult for businesses to comprehend this fact?

Research shows that trust is at the forefront of the new employee experience and if an organisation cannot prove itself trustworthy, then seasoned employees will leave and new ones will not join. WFH has exacerbated an already strained relationship, with communication breaking down and the company’s belief system being tested and found wanting on some occasions.

Employees who have recently considered their own mortality recently have now decided that life is too short to work in a job that makes them miserable. Management who demand unrealistic workloads from their workers or who undermine their employees’ authority on issues of which they are the expert can grind away good will. To avoid this, managers must empathise with their employees.

The expectation that, if an employee is working from home, that they are available whenever they are needed, which leads to a workday with no clearly-defined end-point, will inevitably lead to burn out and resentment. With no workmates around to chat to and vent about the problem, it festers.

Productivity is also under the microscope these days, as the past definition and measurements do not hold muster with the newer generations. What is generally lacking is a result based culture with clearly defined outcome measurements and a standardised assessment framework, rather than a haphazard system based around how many hours have been worked.

By appreciating the old and new pressures their employees were under, managers can stem the flow of workers exiting the business and by building career development into each role, they can give some hope to those who are under their care.

Curious about how Zenshin Talent can help your organisation? Contact us today for a no-strings conversation about your needs and our experience.

Is DevOps The Future?

Is DevOps a stepping stone to your future?

Everyone is talking about DevOps. In the 2020 emerging roles report compiled by Linkedin, DevOp engineer featured prominently which has further boosted its reputation.

DevOps combines development and operations which are commonly operated separately to create a new role. Originally a cultural thing, it became a new set of skills that is now in demand. With DevOps within an organisation, coding speeds up exponentially as well as offering increased scalability.

A DevOps team is responsible for operations and development, creating a bridge between IT and development departments, to update the company’s own software or product, guaranteeing smooth sailing.

A DevOps engineer is a one-size-fits-all title that applies to anyone who is working with development and operations, so they don’t necessarily need to be an engineer. Collaborating across departments, the DevOps engineer works alongside colleagues to make sure that releases of new code happen in a timely fashion.

In order for Data Scientists and those working within Machine Learning to do what they do, thye require DevOps engineers to make the coding happen. DevOps build infrastructure for the company’s IT needs. They also test and monitor to ensure that everything runs well. Systems always need updating and DevOps develop what is needed.

A lot of what DevOps do would traditionally be considered by businesses to be tasks for the IT department, but as knowledge grows and new roles arrive to fit the need, that mindset is changing. This frees up IT to do what they do best.

DevOps may maintain systems but they must be adept problem solvers. With so much data flowing around companies, DevOps are tasked with creating automation where it is necessary, to get that data flowing faster and making life easier for Data Scientists. The developer will always know their code better than anyone else.

With growth within DevOps engineers, progress in the tools they use is speeding up, equipping them to develop full solutions for their companies, which includes Cloud and security. The KPIs needed, such as deployment time, are more understood within the business than they were previously.

DevOps exists to make the processes quicker and the flow of information shorter. Attempting to bring that into a top-down structure defeats the point. Having management who are in charge of the team but have little or no knowledge of the discipline slows down what needs to speed up.  If in doubt, contact a specialist recruitment partner who can advise on team structures.

DevOps engineers are needed but a company cannot scrimp on the amount needed. Understandably, with a new role, managers are a little confused. What we are encountering is ratios within companies where developers and scientists severely outnumber DevOps engineers. If you desire speed, weighing down DevOps engineers with more work than they can handle is not the way to go about it.

With the Cloud emerging during the Covid-19 pandemic as an essential for businesses dealing with large amounts of data, the bonus for DevOps is the ability to cooperate and delegate so much more easily.

As with everything new, the mindset of DevOps must become part of the company’s culture. Success must not be viewed purely through traditional eyes, but in time, we have no doubt that DevOps will become another solid and intuitive part of every business dealing with data.

Curious about how Zenshin Talent can help your organisation? Contact us today for a no-strings conversation about your needs and our experience.