Critical Shortage Of “Data Geek” Talent Predicted By 2018

June 28, 2011
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Author: Steve McDonnell – Spotfire Blogging Team

Author: Steve McDonnell – Spotfire Blogging Team

New research by the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) forecasts a 50 to 60 percent gap between the supply and demand of people with deep analytical talent. These “data geeks” have advanced training in statistics or machine learning who have the ability to analyze large data sets. The study projects there will be approximately 140,000 to 190,000 unfilled positions of data analytics experts in the U.S. by 2018 and a shortage of 1.5 million managers and analysts who have the ability to understand and make decisions using big data.

demand for analytic talent1 300x250 photo (data analytics)MGI models employment of data analytics experts between 2008 and 2018. It estimates 2008 employment to be 156,000, forecasts an additional 161,000 graduates and a loss of 32,000 through attrition. That brings the projected 2018 supply to 285,000 FTEs, with an expected demand of 425,000 to 475,000 positions.

McKinsey’s research looks at nine occupational categories as published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics: Actuaries, Economists, Epidemiologists, Industrial Engineers, Mathematicians, Mathematical Scientists, Mathematical Technicians, Operations Research Analysts and Statisticians. It provides a cool interactive graphic that shows current employees concentrated in just 19 of 146 industries.  MGI believes a steady stream of analytic talent will be required in all industries, as companies use big data analytics as a primary source of competitive advantage.  A similar sentiment was echoed on our blog last week.  Check out “More Proof that “Data Geek” Jobs are Hotter than Hot” or subscribe to Trends and Outliers to stay current on this and other data anlaytics topics.