One Year Later, It’s time to Get Back to the Basics – Part 1

As most of you know, I moved here one year ago from the United States. I left behind a 15 year career as an analyst with Wells Fargo to set up a business here in the Philippines to train analysts. Over the past year, my path has diverged and expanded to encompass several different analytics solutions including social media outsourcing, recruitment analytics training for corporate HR professionals and speaking engagements at schools promoting analytics careers in the IT-BPO industry. I have trained close to 200 people from a large cross section of schools and companies.

This morning I started thinking though about why I came here in the first place. Are there more analyst jobs out there then their is talent available for them? When I first started looking at the demand side, I analyzed things like looking at postings in job street with the term analyst in them… I got back over 1000 postings. A year later I do the same thing, but am now getting back 1300 postings.

My analysis has always been that there are several factors which make a training program like I have developed not only necessary, but imperative.

First off there is not a lot of analytics related education being taught at the college level. You see it in some programs at some schools, but overall higher education is not producing analytics talent ready to fill the jobs.

Secondly, there is such a dichotomy of skills required for the job postings… soft or people skills like communication and cross-department project work combined with the technical skills in specific programming languages or experience with certain types of analytics tools. It is very hard to find people who can balance the art and science of analytics and no one here is training people on both… its all one or the other.

The third reason why a training program like mine is important is the job requirements are getting increasingly complex in both quantity and quality. Traditional methods of recruiting don’t work well for analyst positions because most recruiters are focused almost exclusively in the technical skills and not of the soft skills. It is very hard to assess someone for curiosity or the ability to conceptualize big data schemes in a way that can be explained both to techie developers and people skill focused managers. To make things more challenging, few companies are trying to retain and train up analytics talent within, they instead turn to recruiters to pirate or poach talent from somewhere else.

The need for training approaches that are innovative and effective is growing much, much faster than most people are able to grasp. The massively overwhelming amount of data we have to analyze in our businesses each and very day is mind numbing.