With the world starting to open amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of jobs available in data science sees an upward trend in India as we inch closer to providing vaccines for everyone.
The number of vacancies for data science jobs on the top job portals in India increased by 53% from when India eased the lockdown restrictions on June 8 to Nov 30, according to the data collated by AIMResearch. Although it is difficult to ascertain the exact number of open jobs, the top job portals in India, Naukri, LinkedIn, and MonsterIndia together showed almost 125,000 vacancies on Nov 30.
However, the pandemic did result in a decrease in the number of open data science jobs at the start as vacancies reduced from 101,562 from Dec 17 last year to 81,704 on June 8. Despite this decrease, India’s share of open data science jobs in the world increased from 7.2% in January to 9.8% in August.
A lot of research has been done to study the trends in the data science sector amid the pandemic as the lockdown impacted its job market. And thus, several reasons can be attributed to the upswing in data science jobs in India and across the world.
Change in the way businesses function
Businesses realised the importance of data-driven solutions even before the pandemic. However, most data science teams in firms worked in siloes, or some firms did not have data teams at all. But now, irrespective of the company’s analytics maturity, firms realise the significance of assembling cross-functional crisis-response teams to develop analytics solutions.
Uncertainties due to pandemic have made businesses more cautious. While automated decision making (ADM) systems were available before the pandemic, there was a lack of adoption across firms due to concerns or apprehensions with the technology. However, this has changed since the pandemic as businesses realise the importance of adopting ADM systems to make fast and accurate decisions.
Significant rise in the amount of data generated
As the pandemic spread across India, most of the processes became online, generating huge amounts of data across sectors. This has led companies to develop more sophisticated algorithms, creating a need for more data science roles.
With that being said, the consumer’s spending behaviour completely changed with everything going online. While the number of online activities has returned to pre-covid times on e-commerce platforms, the industry is investing heavily to retain customers by developing intelligent data science solutions.
With 37 million students enrolled in higher education in India, e-learning platforms observed a significant jump in the number of students enrolled for online courses and in the use of video conferencing tools. This has made more data available to analyse and improve customer experience on these platforms.
Payments transactions became online due to the fear of touching notes during the pandemic. As the number of frauds increased along with the number of transactions, banks are looking for data-driven solutions to detect malpractice.
The lockdown helped streaming platforms double their subscribers during COVID. The media and entertainment industry, thus, looks to use all this data to keep customers engaged with their platforms.
The manufacturing and automation industry also has an increased significance as companies look to make their processes contact-less and efficient using various IoT solutions after the pandemic.
Leveraging data for COVID-19 solutions
COVID-19 itself is producing data, including the number of cases, deaths, recoveries, tests, and clinical data like chest X-rays and vitals.
Government and municipality organisations are playing a proactive role in publishing data at regular intervals in this period. This is being used by health-tech firms to develop new AI applications for treatment and intervention, creating a need for data scientists.
Apart from the COVID-related data, the pandemic has also made socio-economic data, like demographic immunity, political stability, security incidents and other factors that could be impacted during a national crisis, available. Thus, non-profits, policymakers and governments are also hiring data scientists for effective data-driven policymaking.
India, being one of the largest producers of data and so many companies working in data science, the pandemic has furthered the adoption of intelligent data science and AI applications.
While the pandemic stopped job hirings at the start, it is creating several opportunities in the field of data science for almost every sector.