Why do consulting skills matter in data science?

Using statistical averages with data is like, “trying to see what’s inside the room by peering through the keyhole,” according to former chairman of the UK statistics Authority, Andrew Dilnot. This is very much the case for businesses who are drowning in raw data but do not have the necessary skills to analyse the information. Which is why data scientists are in such high demand.

According to Domo’s most recent Data Never Sleeps figures of 2017, it showed that on average every single minute there were 456,000 tweets, 45,787,54 Uber trips, 3,607,080 google searches, 527,760 shared Snapchat photos and $258,751.90 that Amazon makes in sales. But which of these figures are meaningful and which are meaningless,  how do data scientists successfully convey such colossal amounts of information without getting lost in translation?

The increase of data scientists simultaneously increases the value for consulting skills in a commercial environment. When working on a project, communication is key both internally and externally with clients. This is because for us to get the maximum results, the data required needs to be clear. But these skills can also help us develop other abilities such as decision making, teamwork and leadership.

How does Brightblue do it?

We continuously encourage our data scientists to build on their consultancy skills. This usually consists of close mentorship with senior members and creating an environment where we are not afraid to ask the silly questions. Essentially, we break down the information and ‘clean’ it for our clients. When presenting the information back, it is of the utmost importance to make sure that the details of our findings are clear.

Additionally, we also encourage our members to partake in weekly and monthly presentations to improve their presenting and writing skills. When displayed correctly these skills are incredibly advantageous because it leads to better organisation, confidence and a general positive impact on the company as a whole.

Data scientists who possess consultancy skills are capable of creating stories out of complex facts and figures to a variety of audiences. This is because we look at this from a business perspective which means that our recommendations are practical and flexible. It allows for businesses to create a clear strategy out of the data presented to them to achieve the maximum results.

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