Big-Data Hiring: 5 Facts From The Field

Human Resource | Sectors   |   
Published February 25, 2014   |   
Laurianne McLaughlin

IT recruiting always has to have a bright, young, new thing. The data science role has been hogging the spotlight for months now, with recruiters citing strong demand and CIOs griping about where to find big data pros. One key question: Should you be hiring from the small pool of outside experts, or training up existing staff from the inside? Also, how can you break into big data from another IT path?

Many IT pros say this is just another example of a supposed IT talent shortage. While there’s little dispute that PhD-level data science experts are a small pool, that isn’t the only hiring need. Are companies unwilling to invest in training workers to acquire new skills such as Hadoop? While visiting EMC this month, I heard some interesting perspectives from David Menninger, head of business development and strategy for Pivotal, a subsidiary of EMC.

Part of his job now is sending in data science teams to do early work with companies that are simply trying to understand the value of data science projects. They might have data analysis experts but not data science or big data experts and they are just starting down the big data path. In other words, these EMC teams do early engagements with companies that EMC and Pivotal will pitch for future data analysis business.

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