Terry Bandy

Terry Bandy Shares What a Data Scientist Does

Terry Bandy
One of the jobs with the highest demand in the workforce today is the data scientist. This job has become increasingly important to businesses due to the expanding ability of technology to keep vast stores of records at an affordable cost.

So what does this job involve? What kind of person would do well in this career? What kind of skills are required to do the job effectively and what is a typical day like in this career? These are some of the questions we’ll endeavor to answer.

What Are Some of the Things a Person Does in this Job?

Data scientists collect and analyze large amounts of data for a given enterprise or business to troubleshoot various problems. They can also use this data to boost productivity and make general improvements in other areas of the business.

The massive amounts of data some large businesses can accumulate are sometimes referred to as “big data.” The two types of data that most often make up big data are structured data and unstructured data. To keep it brief, structured data involves the hard numbers like website traffic and raw statistics about product use. Unstructured data, which is the fastest growing form of data, involves less concrete information such as social media posts, customer reviews, and email.

A company usually employs IT personnel to handle the structured data that a computer can more easily process. The job of the data scientist is to analyze and act upon information given largely by the unstructured data available.

While there are IT aspects to this work, it often involves a more business-oriented brain-storming focus. It isn’t just about the organization of data but finding creative ways to make that data useful.

What Kind of Individual Would Enjoy and Thrive in this Career?

People that thrive on problem-solving using numbers and statistics will do well in this career. Having the patience to deal with some repetition in the workplace is important. This is a job for those that enjoy working indoors and sitting at a computer rather than being outside on their feet. An individual that would do well in this type of job is one that enjoys working with new technology and feels at home working with complex software.

What Kind of Skills are Required for the Job?

A firm grasp on mathematics and statistics is essential. An understanding of business is imperative when working in applicable jobs. The best data scientists also have the creativity and logical reasoning capacity to use data in new and unexpected ways to improve business operations and solve problems.

An innate ability to use technology effectively and an aptitude for learning new programs quickly are also important skills to have. Good programming knowledge is a must in order to manipulate programs effectively and create tools to deal with unique situations.

Lastly, data scientists need to have good communication skills to help others within the company understand their analysis of the data and be able to demonstrate how to effectively use this information. They have to work well as part of a team and have the humility to accept constructive feedback from their fellow co-workers.

What a Typical Day on the Job is Like

Most people will spend their days as part of a team working together to solve problems and achieve the goals of the company they work for. But some people, such as Terry Bandy, are self-employed. He reports that his typical day involves working from his home office mining data and reporting his results to clients or preparing presentations. Terry Bandy is able to manage his own home business while maintaining a balance between family and his work.

Those that work at a corporate office and report to a manager would experience a similar workload, but with specific variations dependant on the products and goals of the business, they work for. Knowing the goals and expectations of the business is essential in creating solutions that match the company’s vision.

Why This Type of Work is Important

As technology advances, the ability to access vast amounts of data in a short period of time has become readily accessible. Having a person dedicated to the analysis of all this big data and actively finding methods to use it in ways that improve company procedure is invaluable for many different types of businesses.

This career is needed everywhere data is an important component of success. Companies that market directly to consumers, businesses that sell to other companies, and organizations that process big data for research purposes can all benefit from the employ of data scientists. As technology makes it easier and cheaper to store and process large amounts of information the role of the data scientist will only continue to grow with time.

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Ideas to Increase Donations to Animal Shelters

Marty Stallone gives you some things to consider:

Take stock of your nonprofit’s current strategy and gather your development team to reflect on the organization’s mission, vision and goals prior to planning any further. Analyze the current state of the nonprofit in reference to funding practices.

Try delving deeper by asking questions such as:

• How long has your nonprofit provided its current services or resources to the community?

• Does your nonprofit have documented credibility within the community or cause?

• What kind of programs do you offer? Are these programs attractive to donors?

• Does your nonprofit collaborate with any like-caused organizations, community groups or federal, state or local government?

• Who is your target donor audience? Are there organizations within the community that share this same audience or have a similar vision and mission? Do they have a secure fundraising program in place?

• What is your nonprofit’s image within the community with constituents? With current donors? With prospects?

• Has your nonprofit’s current fundraising strategy been successful? How often are elements within the strategy updated or rethought? Are donors bored with your strategy’s tactics or have they come to expect it?

More Tips And Ideas

S – Specific. Be very clear on what you are hoping to do. Use exact numbers and concise phrases. Answer the who, what, where, when, why and how to make your goals quantifiable.

M – Measurable. How will you recognize success unless you measure your efforts? Whether it in dollars raised, new donors obtained or impressions made, make your

goals measurable … and then, measure them!

A – Attainable. Don’t set your nonprofit up for failure by working toward a goal that just can’t happen. Know the resources you have to work with, and address challenges.

R – Realistic. This one goes hand-in-hand with “Attainable.” While it’s nice to dream, setting goals that aren’t realistic are not going to help your strategy or team morale.

T – Timely. Goals have a timeline—a start and an end. Not only will this aid in measurement, but the progress of your overall fundraising strategy will be based on this timeline.

As you determine your goals, think about what gap the fundraising efforts will fill. Is this an annual campaign, a capital campaign, a holiday appeal or is there a specific program that is in need of funding? Does your nonprofit hope to receive a spike in gifts, or are you seeking a series of gifts from a donor throughout his or her life-cycle? These questions will guide in determining your nonprofits fundraising goals and outlining the overall strategy.

Once goals are established, a budget and timeline should follow suit. The budget and timeline should be developed with the action plan and tactics portion of your strategy in mind. A budget should outline the anticipated expenses for covering the costs of your strategy, and from what sources these costs will be covered.

Expenses may include:

• Staff time

• Printing, photocopying, equipment and supplies

• Postage and shipping

• Telephone, fax and internet usage

• Travel (for general coordination and to meetings with donors)

• Food and entertainment (during meetings and at special events)

• Professional services or consultants (sponsorship consultants, party planners, etc.)

• Promotional material

The timeline should address what needs to happen, when it will happen, how it will happen and who is responsible for it. Also take into account holidays, staff vacations or potential conflicting community and competitor events.