Information scientist holds a critical position in any organization. They are the people who directly collect and maintain the organization’s databases to ensure that information is always safe and available to use.
If you are interested in this field and aspire to be an information scientist, this article is for you. It covers everything about the job description, education requirements, skills, and everything you need to know to succeed in this field.
Keep reading to get the useful information!
The information scientist is no longer strange in the context of the strong development of today’s technology world. So what is an information scientist?
Where do they work, and what are their responsibilities? To help you answer those questions, I will provide you with some reviews below.
Information scientists are people who undertake data research, statistics, and information repositories. Then, they find ways to make this information valuable and accessible to users.
Information science is the practice, collection, storage, and retrieval of information. It relates to technologies and services that transfer data between organizations and individuals.
You will be in charge of transmitting knowledge, organizing, and retrieving the necessary information if you want to do this job.
Information scientists manage and oversee tasks such as collecting and distributing critical information within one or more organizations to users. Their primary duties and responsibilities include:
- Organize, categorize, evaluate, and distribute informational data in a variety of formats and categories
- Build a database system
- Ensure information is updated and renewed regularly.
- Comply with and apply specific data protection laws
- Intranet development support
- Respond to Freedom of Information (FOI) issues and requests.
- Check, and monitor information and internal requirements.
- Maintain statistical and financial records
- Write various report types.
Information scientists often work in corporate offices, business organizations, and factories. They spend time communicating and researching in the archives with their colleagues or groups.
Information scientists will work in different contexts and needs. For example, some people hold research roles in universities, while others support jobs in hospitals or medical facilities.
Also, they can be an excellent help for executives or those looking for crucial data information.
Any career requires primary education, and information science is no exception. Specific information scientist educational requirements will be in the section below. Continue reading to understand!
Equipping yourself with a background in information science or information and library studies is essential to getting off to a good start in this field. It gives you a better competitive edge and attracts the attention of employers.
You can enter this industry with any skill and degree, depending on the industry you are pursuing. For example, a degree in history is the right choice if you want to hold a senior position in the historical database management industry.
Many employers often require candidates to have an undergraduate or postgraduate degree from the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP).
That’s why I recommend that you carefully check the list of qualifications on the CILIP website to better prepare for your career.
Also, consider applying for positions related to other areas, such as information technology, data governance, and intensive training. It is the ideal solution for you to improve your specialized knowledge and gain valuable experience.
There are several experience requirements to become an information scientist. The thing is that an internship will give you practical learning and experience opportunities to add to your resume.
Most employers give greater preference to candidates with more experience. Hence, I recommend applying for an internship in computer science.
Also, consider finding a position that offers close employment opportunities with experts or senior information scientists. All the above will make you an attractive candidate, creating favorable conditions for career development.
To succeed in this field and become a great information scientist, you or anyone needs to equip yourself with both hard and soft skills:
Hard skills are critical, which is the premise to create concrete steps for you on the development path. Cultivating these hard skills helps you build credibility and trust from potential customers.
Some hard critical skills are such as:
- Excellent research and practice skills
- Has a broad vision and attention to detail
- Effective organization and teamwork skills
- High computer skills and proficiency in supporting tools
- Deep understanding of database systems and the internet
- Good analytical thinking skills
- Effective management skills
- Solid knowledge of computer operating systems, hardware, and software
Along with hard skills, the following soft skills will help you improve performance and increase work efficiency:
- Logical thinking
- Public speaking skills
- Good stress management
- Effective time management
- Ingenuity in problem-solving
- Good written and verbal communication skills
- Well adapted to the new working and living environment.
Next, I cover the tools that every information should master to work efficiently and smoothly through the stages:
- Open Refine
- Statistical Analysis System (SAS)
- Apache Hadoop
- Jupyter Notebook
- Open Refine
- Apache spark
- Apache Pig
Demand for information scientists is expected to grow faster than average over the next several years. As for the salary, they are likely to receive more than expected. For more specifics, let’s explore in the section below.
Data science development has had a significant impact on the way businesses and organizations operate. As the need for data income grows, they realize the value and clear benefits of information scientists in their staff.
At the same time, artificial intelligence (AI) has also become equally important. They also desperately need information scientists to free up time in automating tasks and developing new products and services.
Furthermore, an information scientist has more career growth opportunities as data security becomes a more significant concern.
On average, an information scientist will earn about $92,789 per year, which equates to $44.61 per hour in the United States.
The salary range for information scientists depends on qualifications, skills, and years of experience. It usually ranges between $56,000 – $152,000.
Information scientists have made significant contributions to innovation and career prospects.
Yet, becoming an information scientist also comes with its disadvantages. The good news is that its downsides are compared to the benefits it brings.
Here are its main advantages and disadvantages that you need to consider.
- Advancement opportunities: The demand for information scientists has increased in recent years. So, computer science professionals have career advancement opportunities for professional or management positions.
- Dynamic and flexible working environment: An information scientist can choose to work at the home, office, or anywhere as long as it ensures work efficiency. Also, they have the right to decide on their company culture and workplace.
All in all, it’s easy for information scientists to get flexible schedules to achieve work-life balance and wellness.
- High income: Becoming an information scientist will allow you to have the opportunity to receive a high salary. Most employers are willing to offer compensation up to 50% above average for excellent candidates.
- Training costs are pretty high: The cost of pursuing a computer science education is much higher when compared to other fields. It will depend on the training period that you sign up for.
- Faced with many challenges: You will face many challenges as an information scientist. Some common challenges are changing technology, new advancements, up-to-date information, and creativity.
- Health problems: Sitting at a desk and being exposed to a computer screen for a long time, you will feel back pain, eye strain, and discomfort.
Computer science and information science are two fields with quite similar development goals. Yet, they have very different content and focus goals.
Computer science deals with problems using technology, while information science focuses more on interpreting, organizing, and gathering information.
Information science collects, stores, processes, and uses information efficiently. Therefore, it does not need a degree or certification in coding.
Yet, it is helpful to have experience in coding in some cases, and I highly recommend that you equip yourself with this skill.
The short answer is yes. It is a good value sector with a very high investment return. The average annual salary for information scientist positions tends to increase sharply.
The truth is yes. SQL is essential for creating the perfect test environment for performing analytics stored in Oracle, Microsoft SQL, and MySQL.
Information scientists in computer science apply algorithms to enhance their techniques and processes. It is also one of the ideal solutions for designing software and using machines more efficiently.
Information science is an essential factor that positively impacts all practical business activities. With the high demand for information scientists and promising future career prospects, studying and pursuing this field is a bright choice.
Understanding and capturing the data lifecycle is essential for evolving and improving your operating model afterward.
It would help if an information scientist took the time to talk with colleagues and learn knowledge from professional software engineers or experienced people. It lets you know more about best practices and the most effective tools.
Data science covers a lot of bases and knowledge, so you won’t be able to learn everything in just one day. You should keep the spirit of learning, diligently updating your knowledge, and finding new exciting things for your knowledge.
Thank you for your interest in the article!