Weekly Word on the Street: Big Data Jobs Abundant

Takeaway of the week is that prospective IT job candidates shouldn't be shy when it comes to promoting a wide variety of skill sets that may very well apply to booming IT industries. Look at the blossoming Big Data sector, because more and more folks with out-of-the-box backgrounds are being considered. Might Take a Village to Fill Big-Data Jobs Gap The type of resume sought for the booming IT field of Big Data isn't as limited as one might think, if recent accounts are any indication. Scienti ...

Takeaway of the week is that prospective IT job candidates shouldn't be shy when it comes to promoting a wide variety of skill sets that may very well apply to booming IT industries. Look at the blossoming Big Data sector, because more and more folks with out-of-the-box backgrounds are being considered.

Might Take a Village to Fill Big-Data Jobs Gap

The type of resume sought for the booming IT field of Big Data isn't as limited as one might think, if recent accounts are any indication.

Scientific research, understanding of algorithms and experience with strategic decision-making are just some of the out-of-the-box skillsets that are catching the eye of hiring managers who are almost always on the hunt for a data scientist role that is still evolving, according to tales in a recent article in CIO.com.

Locating individuals capable of handling Big Data, the term associated with gathering and analyzing large quantities of information at corporations' virtual fingertips, is proving to be a bit of a struggle for hiring managers who have become more open to a breadth of background options.

Technology and staffing executives note that not only is the field relatively new to enterprise IT, but the talent need to fill these roles is still maturing.

According to a report published last year, a country-wide shortage of workers with data science skills need to make strategic decisions using Big Data will reach 1.5 million positions by 2018.

Colleges are already doing what they can to prepare their students to fill this gap with degrees and certifications programs that address data science needs, but businesses are looking elsewhere in the meantime.

DataXu, a Boston firm with a product used for online ad campaigns, looks for Big Data staffers with strong math, code, and business skills, but often will take those who are strong in two out of three.

As one hiring manager noted, "Companies are really looking for higher level quantitative skill sets for these roles."

"It's not every developer you come across," the manager said. "It's someone with that business acumen who can parlay those skills into strategic decision making."

Top IT Skills

We all respect the value of IT industry certifications - heck, look where you are - but experience in the following skill sets is hard to beat.

That's the basis of a recent posting at ZDNet by technology maven Joe McKendrik, who broke down a list of in-demand IT skill areas that didn't necessarily need certification.

McKendrik did put in the caveat that certifications are especially valuable when times are tough in IT hiring, but having said there, here's a sampling of his hot handful of skills:

  • Mobile application development: Java, HTML5, Android, iOS and JavaScript
  • Database development: Oracle Developer Suite, Informatica, MongoDB and MySQL/MySQL Cluster
  • Big Data: Hadoop, Hbase, Cassandra, SAS and Greenplum
  • Infrastructure architecture: virtual computing, storage, network, backup and recovery, management services and mobility

As McKendrik said, when it comes down to it, employers want good, knowledgeable and experienced candidates.

Big Apple Tech Slowdown

Is the New York tech boom already a bust?

Some new statistics might point in that direction, but a deeper look shows there's still plenty of bloom in that boom.

According to findings from a headhunting group, hiring at technical firms in New York has slowed as this year has progressed.

Chicago-based Cook Associates pointed out, in a recent post on All Things D, that hiring at digital firms in the area increased 3.2 percent in the third quarter of 2012, yet that represented a slowdown from the 5.6 percent increase the prior quarter. The figure is nearly half the increase (6.2 percent) that took place the first quarter of the year.

A variety of reasons offered up for the lower hiring numbers include the still-stagnant overall economy and a lag in venture-capital funding.

However, it should be noted that there's still plenty of mad hiring going on in New York's tech environs. The 320 firms surveyed by Cook added about 900 new jobs during the third quarter, nothing to sneeze at.

And, lest we forget, tech giant Google - which topped the city's list of those adding tech jobs - is still filling the spaces within the block-long Chelsea building the firm snapped up a couple years back.

Another good sign: Many of the firms in the hiring frenzy are companies that weren't even around just a few years ago.

New York's top five tech hiring firms, according to Cook findings, are Google, Rent the Runway, Amazon, AppNexus and eBay.

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