Newspaper article International New York Times

Less Noise, More Money for Data

Newspaper article International New York Times

Less Noise, More Money for Data

Article excerpt

Salaries rose 8 percent on average in the past year, with bonuses adding $56,000, according to a salary and employment survey.

The outlook for data scientists: less hype, more hiring.

The exuberance surrounding big data has passed its peak and is trending down, the technology research firm Gartner declared last August in its annual "hype cycle" report on perceptions of technology.

Perhaps, but it remains a rising market for data scientists. Salaries rose 8 percent on average in the last year, with bonuses adding $56,000, according to a salary and employment survey released on Tuesday by Burtch Works, a recruiter of professionals with quantitative skills.

The median base salary for entry-level data scientists was $91,000 nationally and $110,000 in Silicon Valley, the survey found. For experienced data scientists, leading teams of 10 or more, salaries are up to $250,000. The report was based on telephone interviews with 371 data scientists

The survey also points to a shift in demand for data scientists. The share of workers with deep data skills who are employed by start- ups fell by more than half, to 14 percent this year from 29 percent last year.

Linda Burtch, managing director of the recruiting firm that bears her name, said the change reflected how much companies in mainstream industries like retailing, consumer products, insurance, health care and manufacturing were building up data science capabilities.

The appeal for data scientists, Ms. Burtch said, is that "you get to work on really good problems, and these established companies can offer them a decent work-life balance."

Khalid Ahmed, 25, is finishing up his Ph.D. at the University of Michigan. His field of computational physics and materials science, Mr. Ahmed said, has increasingly become a data science -- and he has veered in that direction. He was recruited by several companies including start-ups. …

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