Trends in Data Scenсe 2020


Google Trends for “data science”


  • According to our estimates, nearly 1 million people worldwide have jobs in advanced analytics, 291,000 of them in the United States.
  • Over the past two years, the shortage of work in the field of data science has significantly decreased – about 800 thousand specialists were hired, but at the moment, dozens of vacancies remain untouched, with the vast majority of them in the United States.
  • The highest demand for workers in advanced analytics is in the San Francisco Bay area with the highest salaries and the largest number of jobs, followed by large urban centers like New York, Boston, Washington, and Seattle.
  • The average salary in the country for data scientists remains above $ 100,000 – this trend is visible in almost all states, job satisfaction and prestige also remain at a high level.
  • For training specialists in advanced analytics, more than a hundred educational programs have been created.


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For the past few years, data science has been one of the brightest trends in business. In 2012 Harvard Business Review called data scientists work “The sexiest work of the 21st century.” Numerous reports (1, 2, 3, 4) wrote that the world is facing a huge shortage of data scientists. Bootcamps and university programs were created to address issues related to the huge demand for skills in this area.

By “advanced analytics” we include everyone who considers himself to be a data scientist, machine learning specialist or AI researcher.

Demand and supply of data scientists – May 2020

Total number of workers in advanced analytics

Today in the world there are a little less than one million workers in the field of advanced analytics (see the methodology section below), of which 290 thousand, or about 30%, belong to the United States of America. At the moment, the number of data scientists significantly exceeds the number of machine learning engineers and AI researchers both in the US and around the world, however, both engineers and researchers are new in the labor market and can grow significantly in the future.


Comparison of the total number of advanced analysts in the world by position, May 2020

Open and scarce vacancies

To date, about 86 thousand vacancies in advanced analytics have been opened on LinkedIn, the majority (53.4 thousand) are in the United States. It is interesting to note that the United States represents a disproportionately large number of open vacancies (62%) compared with the share of workers in advanced analytics worldwide (30%), although this can be attributed to a false data collection methodology (see the methodology section below).


The number of open advanced analytics roles compared to the total number of professional advanced analytics employees

We can use the number of open vacancies (compared to the number of employees available) as an approximate indicator to understand how many employees are missing. The graph below shows that there are 9% more open vacancies worldwide than directly employees, while in the United States this number reaches about 18.7%.

Deficit reduction

Today in the USA there are approximately 53 thousand free jobs in the field of advanced analytics. However, in August 2018, LinkedIn published a report – at that time the deficit was about 151 thousand jobs. Over the past two years, the deficit has decreased significantly – around 831 thousand professionals in the field of advanced analytics have been hired around the world (see below).


Apteo estimates the total number of advanced analysts over time


Shortage of advanced analysts in 2018 compared to 2020

Distribution of open vacancies and lack of workers in US cities

Total number of specialists and vacancies

It will not surprise anyone that the largest part of the employees in advanced analytics are located in the San Francisco Bay area – about 45.7 thousand people, as well as the largest number of open vacancies – about 8 thousand. In second place is the New York agglomeration – about 38.8 thousand employees and 5.9 thousand vacancies. In third place is the Greater Boston area – 15.9 thousand employees and 3.3 thousand vacancies.

Highest per capita

In first place is the San Francisco Bay Area – 5.9 thousand people per million. In second place is Seattle – 4.3 thousand per million, Boston completes – 3.2 thousand per million.

Greatest labor shortage

The largest percentage (39.2%) of open vacancies is in the city of Washington.


Advanced analytics of employees and vacancies by city


US Salary and Job Satisfaction

Salaries in this area vary across America. Based on data from various sources, we calculated that the average salary of specialists reaches approximately $ 114,000 per year, which corresponds to approximately $ 14,000 in the San Francisco Bay area.

In 2020, work in data science took third place in America according to Glassdoor (right after Front End Engineer and Java Developer). From 2016 to 2019, data scientists ranked first.


Educational programs and skills required

To meet the needs of the business, many new educational programs have appeared. At the moment, there are at least 79 bootcamps, 62 undergraduate programs and 111 master’s programs focused on data science. Below we list the most mentioned software tools and skills for advanced analytics professionals.

Top tools

  • Python
  • SQL
  • R
  • Spark
  • Cloud
  • Aws
  • Java
  • Tensorflow

Top skills

  • Machine learning / regression
  • Statistics
  • Research
  • Prediction
  • Visualization
  • Recommendation
  • Optimization
  • Deep learning
  • Natural language processing


Educational programs


Obviously, data science continues to be extremely popular today. While the world seems to be quickly meeting this demand, there is still an acute shortage of workers in advanced analytics. It is interesting that new positions are emerging such as machine learning engineer or A.I. researcher, and it is likely that they will require additional employees, as more and more companies are working on the internal promotion of data science.

The increase in the number of posts reflects the growing desire of organizations and companies to use data for more competent decisions. Although organizations are hiring more and more people, it is highly unlikely that everyone except the most prestigious companies will be able to hire a sufficient number of employees to meet their business needs.


Calculation of employment and deficit

To identify data scientists and open vacancies in data science, we searched on LinkedIn keywords for the three most common job names that we associate with mathematical, engineering and analytical work, which, in our opinion, is the work of a data scientist with using the premium account of Apteo CEO and Co-founder Shanif Dhanani. The job titles are as follows: “data scientist,” “machine learning engineer,” and “artificial intelligence researcher.”

“Data scientist” and “machine learning engineer” can also be associated with keywords such as “data science” and “MO engineer,” so we used binary search to prevent double counting — we searched for exactly one term at a time, excluding all the others terms. For example, we combined the results from the following two queries to search for “data scientists”:

“Data science” – ”data scientist” – ”machine learning engineer” – ”ml engineer” – ”ai researcher” and “data scientist” – ”data science” – ”machine learning engineer” – ”ml engineer” – ”ai researcher ”

Since LinkedIn displays results only from its expanded network, it is likely that the results can be slightly lower than real numbers, but we believe that these figures give an approximate estimate of the calculated values, which can be useful in analyzing the labor market in the field data science.

Sources of information:

  • LinkedIn job search data retrieved May 1, 2020.
  • Google (population)

Payroll preparation

There is simply no single true source for calculating wages. The US government, recruiting companies and independent reports publish different salaries for advanced analytics. For our reports, we collected as many independent values ​​as possible at both the state and national levels and used the average value.

Sources of information:

Employment growth

As with payroll, in recent years there is very little information about the number of employees in advanced analytics. Using many different sources, we calculated the best estimate of the number of employees for each year. In some cases, we used external data as ours, in others, we made a conclusion based on a curve using the data we have.

Sources of information:

Educational programs and skills required

It should again be said that it was difficult to evaluate educational programs. Each university has its own name for the program in data science, so we had to subjectively determine which programs to include in the list and which to exclude from it. We tried to select those programs based on mathematical rigor, computational work and analytics. We examined various reports and aggregators for collecting data on university programs, as well as various bootcamps to determine the total indicators for the year 2020.

Sources of information:

Read more

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