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Career as Data Scientist

Data Science is an integrative subject which uses many statistical methods, scientific algorithms, information science, data analysis, machine learning concepts, and other related subjects to extract knowledge from a large group of data – both structured and unstructured to produce a strategy for the companies to know about their data and its analysis. Data Scientists possess industry-specific knowledge along with an ace in technical and programming skills. They write highly complex algorithms to bring large amounts of data together. Depending upon the output given by a data scientist, a company plans its business strategy and its plans. Data Science is an emerging career option in the present age. With a steep rise in big data, the biggest high tech companies to medium-sized firms have opened up positions for data scientists to make future predictions about the business based upon the data. The demand is going to increase in the coming future.

Job Profile

Career as Data Scientist

A work routine of a Data Scientist revolves around data. They help the company make strong decisions and improve business strategy in the competitive market depending upon data analysis. They pull the data, merge it, and analyze the trends in the data using many tools such as Python, MATLAB, R, Tableau, Hadoop, SQL, and/or Excel. They write new algorithms based on the analysis and tests them in real-time.

After the job is done, Data Scientist will conduct important meetings with the clients and explain the data analysis and the science behind it to the non-technical people of different departments such as Sales, Marketing, and Planning, etc. The job of a Data Scientist is an indoor-based one. The work pressure may build up at times when the predictive models did not work as expected or when the code goes wrong. The job of a data scientist can be an individual as well as team-oriented work depending upon the size of the company, nature of the business, etc. An average work hour of a data scientist is up to 60 hours per week. There can be extensions in the work duration depending upon the nature of the business.

In an ever-growing industry of Data Science, the demand for employment is very high. This trend has been increasing in recent years. The most coveted roles in Data Science are Data Analyst, Business Analyst, Data Scientist, Business Analytics Manager, Data Engineer, Big Data Specialist and MIS Consultant/Data Visualization Consultant.

The average salary of an entry-level data scientist in India is around five to six lakh per annum. As the experience and skills increase, a person can expect from Rs 30 Lakh to Rs 50 Lakh per annum as the average salary. The salary can also depend upon the nature of the company you have been employed, the industry, etc.  The different types of specialization in Data Science are Data Mining, Statistical Analysis, Cloud and Distributed Computing, Data Engineering, Business Intelligence, Data Visualization and Presentation, and Artificial Intelligence. These are some areas where people can get their expertise and be viable to the ever-changing needs of the industry. 

Every role in Data Science offers the best growth. No role in Data Science is stagnant. It is an icing on the cake for the data scientist to enhance their knowledge and skills. they will be in constant demand by the majority of the companies.

Name of Job/Role

Average salary offered (at 2-5 years work ex)

Top recruiting companies

Data Analyst/Business Analyst

4 lakh PA

Small and medium-sized companies

Entry-level Data Scientist

5 to 6 lakh PA

Small and medium-sized companies

Data Engineer

8 Lakh PA

BitCasa, Quora, Udemy, Shopkick, WePay etc

Big Data and Hadoop Developer

8.5 Lakh PA

Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook, Google

Big Data Manager

16 Lakh PA

Microsoft, Flipkart, Google

Machine Learning Engineer

7 Lakh PA

Google, Apple, Facebook

Senior Data Scientist

17 Lakh PA


Future Growth Prospects and How to get there faster

As there are complex and unmanageable data in the companies, the future of a data scientist is wide and clear. There is a steep demand in Big data and the data privacy regulations are being changed, which creates more demand for data scientists. According to LinkedIn, Data Science is the most promising career of 2019. On average, a person may take seven years or more years to get established in the field of Data Science. This period can be shortened if the person has the required skills and is keen on learning new methods and technologies the job demands.

Pros and Cons of Being a Data Scientist


  • Highly rewarding career

  • Abundant opportunities

  • Unique and Challenging work nature

  • Exposure to many industries and domains

  • Job security


  • Ever-changing job prospects

  • Data Privacy is not ensured

  • Extensive Domain Knowledge required

  • A large amount of data cannot be manageable every time

How do I get there?

Any student who intends to seek a career path in data science after 10th 

  • Can opt for science stream in higher secondary. 

  • Concentrate on learning PYTHON programming language along with Statistics and MySQL.

  • Develop an interest in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML). 

  • Keep track of recent developments in AI and ML. Follow the companies depending upon AI on Social media.

  • Expose yourself to the world of AI. Keep writing the sample code.

Any student who wants to make a career in data science after 12

  • Many colleges are providing a Bachelor’s degree in Data Science and Analytics. Students can opt to study it or can take a degree with computer science as the main subject.

  • Strong statistical and mathematical skills will help you shine in the data science field. Practice them thoroughly.

  • Degree in Statistics or Mathematics can also help you along with programming skills.

Students who complete graduation and want to take up data science as their career 

  • Can choose masters science and analytics.

  • Can choose a master’s degree in Mathematics/Statistics along with an online course in Python for Data Science or an online course in Hadoop or Big data.

  • Join the community of Data Scientists in Social media and be up to date with all the recent developments in the industry.

  • Know R Programming, its uses in data science. Study about managing Big Data with R Programming.

  • Learn about Data Visualization tools such as Tableau, Kibana, Qlikview, etc.

  • Go for some sample data science projects from to get hands-on experience.

  • Take up online certifications in Data Science from Udemy, Udacity, Simplilearn.

Students who complete Post graduation can go for PhD programmes in Data Science along with the courses mentioned above to be done after graduation. Students should be aware of the developments in the Data Science field and never stop learning even after their education is complete. To get promoted to the next level in this field, one should keep track of every small change in Data Science and its related fields.

How much does it cost ?

The average cost of an engineering course in Big Data Analytics in top colleges ranges from 3.50 Lakh and can go up to 6 Lakh per annum. The average cost of a Bachelor’s degree in Data Science, analytics and other related subjects costs from Rs 50000 to 1 Lakh per annum. The average cost of a Master’s degree in Data Science costs range can go up to Rs 5 Lakh per annum. The PG Diploma course in Data Science and analytics costs range from Rs 10 Lakh and can go up to Rs 13 Lakh. The fees mentioned here are approximate figures. The fees can increase or decrease depending upon the type of college, rating of the college and the type of the course. Some colleges take capitation fees, lab fees, club, or association fees, etc. apart from the tuition fees.

What are the Top Colleges where one should be studying to become a Data Scientist?

Data Science is an ever-evolving subject and gaining popularity from the past three to four years. Below are some of the premier colleges in India which offer Data Science courses.

Rank of College as per 2019 

Name of College, City

Programme Fees 


IIT Kharagpur, IIM Calcutta and ISI Kolkata

PG Diploma in Business Analytics – 2 years – Rs 20,00,000


Jigsaw Academy by MAHE (Manipal Academy of Higher Education) – Bengaluru and Hyderabad

PG Diploma in Data Science – 11 months – Rs 4,95,000, 


Praxis Business School - Bengaluru, Kolkata, Tirupati

Post Graduate Program in Data Science - 9 months – Rs 5.4 Lakh.


Great Learning – Bengaluru, Mumbai, Chennai, Gurgaon, Hyderabad, Pune, and Online Classes

PG program in Artificial Intelligence – 5 months - Rs 2.4 Lakh PA to Rs 3.6 Lakh PA


NMIMS’s Mukesh Patel School of Technology Management & Engineering - Mumbai

M. Tech Data Science & Artificial Intelligence – 2 years - Rs 5 Lakh PA.


International Institute of Digital Technologies - Tirupati

PG program Business Analytics – 1 year- Rs 5 Lakh.


Symbiosis Centre for Information Technology - Pune

MBA Data Sciences and Data Analytics – 2 years -  13.14 Lakh PA.


S P Jain School of Global Management

Graduate Certificate in Big Data and Visual Analytics – 8 months - Rs 5 Lakh.

Books and other Study Material

Some books which can be of great help to students who wish to take up a career in data science are:

  1. Python Data Science Handbook by Jake VanderPlas

  2. Think Python by Allen B. Downey

  3. Understanding  Machine Learning: From Theory to Algorithms by Shai Shalev-Shwartz and Shai Ben-David

  4. Practical Statistics for Data Scientists by Peter Bruce and Andrew Bruce

  5. Python Machine Learning By Example: The easiest way to get into Machine Learning

  6. Python for Data Analysis by Wes McKinney

What if this career does not work out for me? What are the other options for a person with these credentials?

Data Science is for those who can deal with large data with the help of multiple subjects at the same time and can produce an output based on the data analysis. However, having a degree in data science and not being able to succeed in the field is not a failure which means one should always have a Plan B if Plan A did not work. There are various subjects you study in Data Science, such as Statistics, Python Programming, and Mathematics. Skills such as Tableau development, SQL are also a major addition to your career. If you are proficient in any of them, you can be a python programmer, Statistician or a Tableau developer. The options are endless for hardworking and aspirant individuals.

Content on this page is by Career Expert
Mrs. Kum Kum Tandon
MA (Psychology), M.Ed, Diploma in Educational Psychology, Vocational Guidance & Counseling (NCERT, Delhi) | View Complete Profile

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