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Data scientists are part of a new type of analytical data professional who have technical computer science and data skills to solve challenging business problems. These workers are part mathematician, part trend-spotter, and part computer scientist. They are able straddle the IT and business worlds effectively, so they are wanted for many positions and are well compensated. (SAS.com).
Many data scientists started their careers in statistics or data analysis. But as big data grew and evolved, these roles evolved into more of a data scientist occupation. Data is not just an afterthought for the IT department to handle. It is vital information that needs careful analysis so that business-critical decisions can be made.
Common duties for data scientists include:
- Collecting large quantities of random information and transforming it into usable data to make business decisions.
- Solve complex business problems with data-driven techniques.
- Work with many programming languages to manipulate and interpret data, such as R, Python and SAS.
- Have an excellent understanding of statistical tests and distributions.
- Stay current with analytical techniques including machine learning, text analytics and deep learning.
- Seeking order and patterns in large datasets, as well as looking for trends that can help a company save or make money.
Data Scientist Salary Outlook
If you want to become a data scientist, you will probably need a bachelor’s and/or masters in data science, computer science or a related field. These are tough majors, so you will want to review the salary potential of data scientists before you make such an important educational decision.
Below is detailed salary information.
Bureau of Labor Statistics
The Bureau of Labor Statistics does not provide specific salary data for data scientists. But the related profession of computer and information research scientists has an annual median wage of $118,370, with a range between $69,230 and $183,200. (BLS.gov). Median wages are highest in this field in the following industries:
- Software publishers: $140,200
- Research and development in physical, engineering, and life sciences: $128,500
- Computer systems design and related services: $124,200
- Federal government: $109,800
- Colleges, universities, and professional schools: $82,600
Payscale.com reports the average salary for data scientists is $95,998, with a range between $65,000 and $134,000. The website also reports the following company salaries: (Payscale.com)
- Booz, Allen, Hamilton: $80,000
- Microsoft: $122,000
- Amazon: $118,000
- Facebook: $121,000
- IBM: $98,000
- Ford: $93,000
- Apple: $126,000
- Google: $138,000
The following skills are important for data scientists and the pay offered for them is high:
- Machine learning: $99,100
- Python: $97,600
- Data analysis: $91,800
- R: $89,m500
- Statistical analysis: $95,600
Pay for data scientists also will vary based on experience:
- Zero to one year of experience: $85,600
- One to four years of experience: $94,000
- Five to nine years of experience: $107,200
- Ten to 19 years of experience: $120,00400
- More than 20 years of experience: $134,100
Pay by the city will vary as well for data scientists above or below the average wage of $95,998:
- San Francisco: +26%
- Seattle: +12%
- Boston: +5%
- New York City: +4%
- Los Angeles: +2%
- Washington DC: -7%
- Chicago: -9%
Ziprecruiter.com reports the average national salary for data scientists is $118,042, with a range between $35,500 and $178,500. Most data scientist salaries currently range between $92,000 and $137,500. (Ziprecruiter.com)
This website states the national average salary for data scientists is $120,495, with a range between $88,000 and $163,000. (Glassdoor.com)
University of Wisconsin
The University of Wisconsin’s Data Science Department reports the average data scientist’s salary is $113,400. The site says the major factor driving high data science salaries is that companies are realizing the great power of big data and want to use it to drive critical business decisions. As the supply of data scientists has not yet caught up with the supply, starting salaries for these positions can range from $50,000 to $95,000. (Wisconsin.edu).
This source also states that work experience will dictate in part how much you earn as a data scientist:
- Entry-level data scientist: Median starting salaries have been reported as high as $95,000.
- Mid-level data scientist salary: Median salary for someone with several years of experience is $128,700.
- Experienced data scientist salary: Median salary for the most experienced is $165,000.
Also, one’s job title in the field influences your salary. According to Datajobs.com, these job titles have the following salary ranges:
- Data scientist: $85,000-$170,000
- Data analyst: $50,000-$110,000
- Data analytics manager: $90,000-$140,000
- Big data engineer: $70,000 to $115,000
Further, the industries with the highest median salaries for data scientists are in cloud services; hosting, and CDN; search and social networking; and banking and finance.
Data Scientist Job Outlook
Employment for computer and information research scientists will grow by 16% from 2018 to 2028, which is much faster than the average for other occupations.
The research and development of data scientists and computer and information research scientists are what transforms ideas into technology that leads to industries. As the demand for better technology grows, there will be more demand for good data and computer scientists.
Strong growth in the collection of data by companies will cause a greater need for data-mining services, and computer scientists will be required to devise algorithms that help companies use massive amounts of data. With this important information, businesses will have a better grasp of their customers. Also, a greater need for robust cybersecurity should bring new data scientist and computer scientist jobs to prevent cyberattacks that put personal and proprietary information at risk. (BLS.gov).
Data Scientist Salary by State
|State||Hourly Wage||Annual Salary|
|New York - Data Scientist Salary||$62.51||$130,011|
|Massachusetts - Data Scientist Salary||$61.99||$128,949|
|New Hampshire - Data Scientist Salary||$60.84||$126,540|
|Maryland - Data Scientist Salary||$57.76||$120,143|
|Hawaii - Data Scientist Salary||$57.13||$118,824|
|Alaska - Data Scientist Salary||$57.12||$118,811|
|Nevada - Data Scientist Salary||$57.12||$118,811|
|Montana - Data Scientist Salary||$57.12||$118,811|
|North Dakota - Data Scientist Salary||$57.12||$118,811|
|Wyoming - Data Scientist Salary||$57.12||$118,811|
|Idaho - Data Scientist Salary||$57.12||$118,811|
|Vermont - Data Scientist Salary||$57.03||$118,615|
|Nebraska - Data Scientist Salary||$56.95||$118,459|
|Connecticut - Data Scientist Salary||$56.88||$118,310|
|Washington - Data Scientist Salary||$56.79||$118,133|
|Rhode Island - Data Scientist Salary||$56.22||$116,946|
|California - Data Scientist Salary||$56.16||$116,819|
|Virginia - Data Scientist Salary||$55.89||$116,245|
|New Jersey - Data Scientist Salary||$54.75||$113,881|
|Arizona - Data Scientist Salary||$54.48||$113,322|
|West Virginia - Data Scientist Salary||$54.38||$113,102|
|Colorado - Data Scientist Salary||$54.24||$112,824|
|Pennsylvania - Data Scientist Salary||$54.06||$112,435|
|South Dakota - Data Scientist Salary||$53.98||$112,281|
|Minnesota - Data Scientist Salary||$53.97||$112,256|
|South Carolina - Data Scientist Salary||$53.88||$112,075|
|Oregon - Data Scientist Salary||$53.84||$111,977|
|Tennessee - Data Scientist Salary||$53.78||$111,865|
|Delaware - Data Scientist Salary||$53.64||$111,567|
|Utah - Data Scientist Salary||$53.48||$111,247|
|Kentucky - Data Scientist Salary||$53.40||$111,062|
|Kansas - Data Scientist Salary||$53.16||$110,579|
|Ohio - Data Scientist Salary||$53.07||$110,384|
|Indiana - Data Scientist Salary||$52.81||$109,837|
|Oklahoma - Data Scientist Salary||$52.68||$109,568|
|Wisconsin - Data Scientist Salary||$52.48||$109,168|
|Iowa - Data Scientist Salary||$52.41||$109,019|
|Louisiana - Data Scientist Salary||$52.24||$108,652|
|Maine - Data Scientist Salary||$51.99||$108,148|
|Texas - Data Scientist Salary||$51.46||$107,044|
|Alabama - Data Scientist Salary||$51.06||$106,209|
|Georgia - Data Scientist Salary||$51.06||$106,197|
|Arkansas - Data Scientist Salary||$51.02||$106,120|
|New Mexico - Data Scientist Salary||$50.59||$105,234|
|Mississippi - Data Scientist Salary||$50.32||$104,660|
|Michigan - Data Scientist Salary||$50.11||$104,229|
|Illinois - Data Scientist Salary||$49.99||$103,984|
|Missouri - Data Scientist Salary||$49.01||$101,944|
|Florida - Data Scientist Salary||$48.07||$99,982|
|North Carolina - Data Scientist Salary||$43.76||$91,023|
Source: Ziprecruiter.com, January 2020.
Data scientists are highly sought after in all industries to help companies make use of massive quantities of data, so they can make better business decisions, from which products and services to market, where, at which price, and much more. Professionals with a strong background in computer science, statistics, and/or data should be able to have a long, profitable career as a data scientist with a starting salary of $70,000 per year or more.