What are the Career Paths for Data Scientists vs Software Developers?

To help you find the right job or career for your future, I have identified two (2) of the most promising Information Technology (IT) careers available in the 21st. century.  

So, read on to learn more about the Data Science and Software Developer career paths. 

The Data Science Career Path

Data Scientists specialize in "using computer programs / automated routines to analyze big data (large amounts of data) and then identify trends, patterns, insights from them". 

Big data represents extremely large data sets that may be analyzed using software programs to reveal patterns, trends, and associations.

A data scientist's job may include researching and identifing the best software algorithms for detecting patterns in data and then implementing these data mining algorithms as part of an automated data analysis or data mining software program.

A data scientist may specialize in the following career paths:

  1. Data Analysis
  2. Data Reporting / Data Visualization
  3. Data Mining / Machine Learning
  4. Algorithm Development / Software Development 

The Job Outlook for Data Scientists

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are lots of occupations that work with big data in one way or another.

These big data workers have job titles which may include:

  • Managers who work with big data as chief data officers or chief information officers. These managers create policies for how their organizations use data, as well as supervise other data workers like data analysts and computer programmers.
  • Post secondary teachers who use big data to instruct students in statistical analysis and computer science. 
  • Software developers who write the computer programs for aggregating, processing, analyzing and visualizing big data as well as identifying trends and other insights from data.

The Software Developer Career Path

Software Developers specialize in automating or streamlining business processes using computer programming code like CSharp (C#), Java, JavaScript, etc.

Software Developers typically build desktop / web / mobile software applications by architecting, designing, developing, testing and deploying custom software programs.

A software developer may specialize in the following career paths:

  1. Desktop Development
  2. Web Development
  3. Mobile Development
  4. Systems Engineering
  5. Database Design / Database Development
  6. Business Intelligence Development

The Job Outlook for Software Developers

According to the US Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of software developers is projected to grow 17 percent from 2014 to 2024, which is much faster than the average for all occupations.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are several factors that will increase the demand for software developers in the future.

Some of the factors that will be driving the increasing demand for software developers are:

  • the need for more software applications that can run on mobile devices and tablets
  • the need for more healthcare software for managing new and existing healthcare policy enrollments 

So, now you have it ... two (2) of the most promising career paths in the near and forseeable future.

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