London leads the field in vacancies for data scientists

DataIQ News

London is home to more data scientist jobs than anywhere else in the country, almost 13 times more than second place Cambridge and over 16 times more than third place Manchester, according to an analysis of vacancies which have been posted in the past 12 months, which also shows limited scope for those seeking entry-level roles.

According to recruitment platform Joblift, 8,672 data scientist vacancies have been posted in the UK in the past year, rising by an average of 3% a month, compared to a 2% increase in the whole UK job market.

The capital housed 53% of all vacancies last year, while 51% of the 3,530 job postings that stated a wage in London, advertised a salary of over £50,000.

Only 7% of all job vacancies stated a salary below £30,000, meaning at least 93% of data scientist vacancies offered pay significantly higher than the UK’s average wage of £28,600.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, knowledge of programming systems was the most requested hard skill, being mentioned in 83% of job ads. Delving deeper, Python, mentioned in 6,334 postings, was the most popular programming language to understand.

The data suggests junior roles are scarce; previous work experience is essential for data scientist employers (5,537 mentions), as is post-graduate studies. Some 849 job ads mentioned the need for candidates to hold a PhD and 1,342 requested a Master’s degree.

Adding to the need for highly qualified and skilled candidates, knowledge of SAS was requested in 1,456 job postings, while the ability to work with unstructured data was asked for in 563 vacancy postings.

Joblift also analysed the most frequently asked for skills in data science vacancies to determine what employers are looking for when sifting through candidate profiles. Based on all the vacancies that were advertised in the last 12 months, the most desired soft skills in data science candidates are communication skills, an analytical mind-set, passion, dedication and confidence.

On the other hand, being caring or empathetic, charismatic, people, assertive, and spontaneous were the least requested skills.