What exactly data scientists do?
When you log into your regular food or pizza delivery app, do you notice that it provides suggestions for new food items even as you scroll up or down and select the dishes you want? The new items the app suggests usually are similar to your habitual selections—gluten-free, cheese-filled crust available, vegetarian, non-vegetarian or spicy. The app does this by collating data of your previous purchases, creating a buyer profile of you, and then making personalized recommendations. So how do apps make sense of your data and make you buy more? The data scientists in their team do it.
The SaaS companies constantly collect data on their customers like location, employee strength, core business, and product usage, to try to identify other markets or locations with similar customer profiles that they could attract and expand their business. Data scientists in companies use various statistical tools to make sense of all the data collected to understand the underlying patterns and trends. Data scientists crunch figures, specifics and help develop artificial intelligence tools that will do these tasks intelligently.
In a highly competitive market, especially after Chat GPT, the field of data science involving converting text to numbers—also called natural language processing– is booming. However, finding data scientists with relevant knowledge and experience is challenging in smaller cities.
Scarcity of data scientists in small cities?
One of the main reasons for a shortage of data scientists in the market is that it requires Mathematics. Most students do not prefer to specialize in Mathematics for under-graduation because they do not enjoy the subject or believe the field lacks job opportunities.
Data shows that enrolment in BSc Maths has dropped by 50% in Madras University. This trend is seen across the country. Colleges report that most people opt for computer science over Mathematics because they believe it provides more job opportunities.
Most of my fellow batchmates, juniors, and seniors opted to get into Academics, banking, or UPSC. The people opting for data science is very low comparatively because of lack of awareness on its opportunities,
says a senior data scientist at Kovai.co, Pavithira Rajendran, who pursued a diploma in data analytics after her undergraduate degree.
Bharathiar University offers a two-year Masters in data analytics; however, most students are not fully aware of the opportunities in the field, says the Head of Data Science at Kovai.co, Selvaraaju Murugesan.
Students who also pass out of data science and analytics courses don’t come out with the required skillsets because the teachers don’t have any practical experience in analytics. They teach them theoretically, he adds.
So, pass-outs are difficult to hire immediately, he adds.
Processing complex noisy data at Kovai.co
In Kovai.co, our data science team works on two aspects of our products—Document360 and Churn360. While one aspect is cost optimization of marketing efforts and initiatives, the other is helping produce new AI features, including our new SEO meta description generator.
I have always enjoyed playing with numbers since childhood, so converting words into numbers and crunching them to find insights is super exciting, says Pavithira.
We provide insights into which marketing channels provide us the best leads, which regions or countries generate more revenue for us, which industries we can start targeting based on their online search data available along with others, she adds.
They have also developed some cool AI features besides SEO meta description generators, like Tag generator and related article suggestions.
Once you key in the article in Document360, it studies your content and provides “tag” suggestions based on your keywords, so it makes the article more findable for Google. The related article suggestions are given based on the article currently being read by the user, allowing the user to read more on the subject if they opt to,
says Murugesan. “Data science can truly make a difference in someone’s life. All our above features largely help technical writers worldwide,” he adds.
Opportunities outside SaaS
Outside Kovai.co and SaaS too, data scientists have abundant opportunities in tier II cities. Many education companies in e-learnings use artificial intelligence for automated course recommendations for upskilling and dynamically changing questions during student assessments. Finance companies use AI for financial risk assessments, cyber security and fraud detection.
Data analysis also has plenty of opportunities in small cities across the country. For example, Micro Small and Medium Industries use data analytics to understand their business health, process efficiency and cost optimization. Many homegrown brands who have begun selling online and on social media platforms use data analysis to create buyer persona profiles so their advertisements reach the right audience.
Thus, if you love numbers and have enjoyed Mathematics and Statistics in school or college, data science is a field we recommend you consider. We have extremely exciting tasks and opportunities for you at Kovai.co.
Candidates interested can keep tabs on openings for data science roles by visiting our Kovai.co Careers page.