Why You Need to Budget Today for More Data Analysts Tomorrow

With national unemployment at a low 4.9%, being able to recruit and retain seasoned, experienced data analytics experts is going to be challenging. Here are 5 ways your company can maintain its competitive hiring advantage.

1. Compensation considerations. The median salary for professionals with big data expertise is $103,000 a year, according to Forbes. If you need a staff of 10, that’s $1 million in salary costs just for data analysts. That doesn’t include benefits, which usually run about one-third the cost of the salary. Be sure to budget appropriately.

“With an average of 35 data jobs available in every state, why would the best of the best want to work for you?”

2. Standing out from the crowd. Glassdoor’s 2016 jobs survey showed that being a ‘data scientist’ is one of the 25 ‘best jobs in America’. According to Glassdoor, there are currently 1,736 data scientist jobs available today, at a median base salary of $116,840. With an average of 35 data jobs available in every state, why would the best of the best want to work for you? You’ve got to ensure that your HR staff, your data analyst supervisors and your advertising can answer that question well.

3. Location, location, location. Consider locating your business in or hiring from markets that have an abundance of data analysts now. The top three markets for these experts are San Jose/Sunnyvale/Santa Clara, San Francisco/Oakland/Fremont, and the DC/Arlington areas, according to the Dept. of Labor.

4. Training internally. Make sure your team supervisors are looking across the company at the education, experience and skills of the people you already have. Are they applicable to those needed by a data analyst? Is there anyone on your staff that you feel is trainable? Consider that there are no recruitment costs for these people and that their retention score is already high.

5. Be willing to pay for H1b visas. For certain positions, especially those in math and science, the best people may not be available in your market. Look to the market that has the right skills you need, and consider covering the cost of the H1b visa for that person. For maximum benefit, you can always have your best foreign data analysts train your U.S. employees.

As one of the best jobs in America, data analytics employees are not going to just fall at your door. You’ve got to woo them and win them. Start working with your CIO and your HR head today to understand what’s needed, and commit to giving them the resources required so that your firm can find the best data analysts and keep them long into the futu

Melissa Behrend
Melissa Behrend is a business writer, yogi, and dog lover who lives in Tampa, Florida. She is a proud graduate of Rollins College.

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